Apply for NT livestock loading scheme permit

If you’re a livestock transport operator, you can apply for a Northern Territory (NT) livestock loading scheme permit that allows increased mass limits for livestock loads.

An NT livestock loading permit is issued for 12 months.

Entry to the scheme is available to both NT and interstate operators, but is not compulsory. Normal mass limits apply to all other livestock vehicles that don’t have a permit under the scheme.

New scheme rules

From 4 April 2022, all operators must follow the new rules of the scheme.

Changes include:

  • adjusted concessional mass limits
  • new conditions for vehicles, including a speed limit of 90km/h when loaded with cattle.

To find out more, read the NT livestock loading scheme guidelines PDF (884.5 KB).

Current members

If you’re already a member of the scheme, you will need to reapply and have your vehicle inspected.

A 2-year transitional period will be in place from 4 April 2022 to 3 April 2024 to give you time to reapply.

During this period, you can continue to operate under your existing permits under the old scheme.

To find out more, read appendix A of the guidelines.

Interstate members

Mass concessions provided by interstate livestock loading schemes don’t apply in the NT. Without a permit issued under the NT livestock loading scheme, normal mass limits apply.

For interstate registered livestock vehicles without NT livestock loading labels, you can apply for an interstate interim permit.

The interim permit is issued for 12 months to allow time to confirm eligibility.

Before you apply

Vehicles must meet certain technical requirements to be eligible for the scheme.

The following heavy vehicles are eligible based on the following criteria.

A rigid truck that has:

  • been specially designed and built to carry livestock and
  • a dual-tyred, tandem drive-axle group.

A prime mover that has:

  • a dual-tyred, tandem drive-axle group and
  • a fifth-wheel coupling with a D rating of at least 169 kN.

A semi-trailer that has:

  • been specially designed and built to carry livestock
  • a dual-tyred tri-axle group
  • an internal length available for the carriage of livestock of no more than 12.5 metres
  • a kingpin with a D rating of at least 193 kN
  • a tow-coupling with a D rating of at least 191 kN
  • an aggregate trailer mass rating of at least 40 tonnes and
  • an unladen mass of no more than 15 tonnes.

Tandem axle dollies

A converter dolly that has:

  • a dual-tyred tandem axle group
  • a fifth-wheel coupling with a D rating of at least 193 kN
  • a drawbar tow-eye coupling with a D rating of at least 191 kN and
  • an aggregate trailer mass rating of at least 18.5 tonnes.

Tri-axle dollies

A converter dolly that has:

  • a dual-tyred tri-axle group
  • a fifth-wheel coupling with a D rating of at least 193 kN
  • a drawbar tow-eye coupling with a D rating of at least 191 kN and
  • an aggregate trailer mass rating of at least:
    • 20 tonnes if the dolly has conventional suspension or
    • 22.5 tonnes if the dolly has road-friendly suspension.

A B-double semi-trailer that has:

  • been specially designed and built to carry livestock
  • a dual-tyred tri-axle group
  • a kingpin with a D rating of at least 193 kN
  • a fifth wheel coupling with a D rating of at least 193 kN and
  • an aggregate trailer mass rating of at least 40 tonnes.

There is no maximum internal length available for carrying livestock for a B-double semi-trailer on its own. But when coupled with a semi-trailer, the combined internal length of both trailers must be no longer than 18.8 metres.

Livestock loading technical inspection

You must present each unit (truck, trailer or dolly) to a government vehicle inspection facility or a weighbridge for a livestock loading technical inspection.

You might need to book first. Check with the relevant facility.

Interstate schemes and interim permits

To apply for a permit, you must provide evidence that the vehicles are certified to operate under a livestock loading scheme in the jurisdiction they are registered in.

For semi-trailers or B-double semi-trailers, you must also provide evidence of its unladen mass. Read section 4 of the guidelines.

Mass concessions under the scheme

Eligible vehicleAxle groupConcessional mass limit under permit
Rigid truckTandem drive18.5 tonnes
Prime moverTandem drive

The lesser of:

  • the vehicle’s gross vehicle mass (GVM) minus the vehicle’s nominated steer axle operating mass (in tonnes) or
  • the mass rating of the axle group or
  • 21 tonnes.
Semi-trailerTri-axle

24 tonnes

B-double semi-trailerTri-axle24 tonnes
DollyTandem18.5 tonnes
DollyTri-axle

No concessional mass under permit. It must not exceed:

  • 20 tonnes - conventional  suspension
  • 22.5 tonnes -  road-friendly suspension.

How to apply

To apply, follow the steps below.

Step 1. Fill in the relevant application for a livestock loading permit.

VS10(a) Prime mover and dollies livestock loading scheme application PDF (727.4 KB)
VS10(a) Prime mover and dollies livestock loading scheme application DOCX (66.4 KB)

VS10(b) Trailer livestock loading scheme application PDF (256.2 KB)*
VS10(b) Trailer livestock loading scheme application DOCX (65.8 KB).

*Use this additional form if you need to list extra trailers to your application:

VS10(c) Rigid truck livestock loading scheme application PDF (594.9 KB)
VS10(c) Rigid truck livestock loading scheme application DOCX (75.4 KB)

Step 2. Submit your form by email to mvr.permits@nt.gov.au or in person to any MVR vehicle inspection facility.

You will need to pay the permit of exemption fees.

You can pay by MasterCard, Visa, Basics Card, Cash or EFTPOS.

Contact

Contact the permits officer on 08 8951 5263.


Last updated: 02 March 2022

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