Print Download PDF


1 Purpose and Scope

The NZ Transport Agency Waka Kotahi has prepared this document, Vehicle inspection requirements manual: Heavy vehicle specialist certification to enable heavy vehicle specialist and manufacturing inspectors to achieve correct and consistent standards of inspection and certification.

Heavy vehicle specialist and manufacturing certifiers are required to certify specialist aspects of heavy vehicles. They are appointed by the Transport Agency under section 2.2(1)(i) of the Land Transport Rule: Vehicle Standards Compliance 2002 (the Rule) as vehicle inspectors and/or inspecting organisations.

In order to prepare a vehicle for operational service in New Zealand, the owner may be required to fit additional equipment and to modify the vehicle design to optimise the vehicle for the role in which it is to be employed.

This modification and mounting of additional equipment must result in a vehicle that is deemed by the Transport Agency to be safe to operate.

This means that the modifications (including any repairs or addition of equipment):

  • are designed to be technically sound
  • are done to a high standard of workmanship
  • use parts and materials that are fit for their purpose
  • comply with any standards that are applicable
  • do not give the vehicle any unacceptable characteristics.

The Transport Agency has delegated the technical assessment of repairs and modifications to heavy vehicle specialist inspectors (HVS or HVM VI) and inspecting organisations (IO). Since the range of knowledge, expertise and experience needed to make these assessments is very wide, HVS certifiers are appointed to certify various aspects of a vehicle. In this manual, these inspectors are generally referred to as HVS certifiers.

These aspects and the Transport Agency requirements for them are covered in this manual. The purpose of this document is to:

  • restate the conditions of appointment and continued authorisation
  • cover the requirements for the inspection and certification of specialist aspects of heavy vehicles.

This VIRM is published online only and is not supplied in hard copy.

Amendments to this manual will be issued from time to time as inspection requirements change and improvements are made. Details of amendments are available from the Amendments tab on the horizontal menu. Suggestions for improvement should be made using the feedback button found on every page.
HVS/M certifiers must ensure they have access to, are familiar with and use, the latest version of the VIRM.

Where appropriate the Transport Agency will consult with HVS/M inspecting organisations prior to the confirmation of amendments to this manual.

An appointed certifier or inspecting organistaion (IO) cannot use the Transport Agency brand, logo or name in connection with their business unless such use is approved in writing by the Transport Agency.

Contacting the Transport Agency
Phone 0800 587 287
then follow the instructions
Safety Issues – safe work practices

Correct use of this VIRM may involve the use of hazardous materials, work practices or operations and equipment. It is the responsibility of the HVEx/HVxD certifier and IO to establish appropriate safety and health practices required by legislation. Safe work practice shall be employed at all times. An effective compliance process for Health and Safety at work is required by law and is also a requirement of the Transport Agency .

The methods and processes used for the manufacture or repair of a heavy vehicle (HV) shall combine the requirements of the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015 and any relevant manufacturer’s recommendations.

This applies to the protection of staff as well as the avoidance of damage to equipment or the work or, in the case of a repair, further damage to the item being repaired. Refer to your HSE manual and work instructions before commencing any work. For repairs most vehicle manufacturers also make recommendations on safe practices.

Page amended 9 April 2018 (see amendment details)