Correct as at 21st May 2019. It may be superseded at any time.

Extract taken from: NZTA Vehicle Portal > VIRMs > Heavy vehicle specialist certification > Occupant features

6 Occupant features

6-1 Seatbelts and seatbelt anchorages

Certifier categories: HVEC | HVCD

Reasons for rejection

1. A heavy motor vehicle manufactured before 1 October 2003 has been fitted with a seatbelt that does not comply with the applicable requirements in this chapter.

2. A heavy motor vehicle manufactured before 1 October 2003 has been fitted with a seatbelt attached to seatbelt anchorages that do not comply with the applicable requirements in this chapter.

3. A vehicle of class NB or class NC manufactured on or after 1 October 2003 does not have:

a) lap-and-diagonal retractor seatbelts in the driver’s seating position and front outer seating position, and

b) lap seatbelts in all front middle seating positions.

4. A seatbelt in a front outer seating position,

a) does not have a multiple-sensitive emergency-locking retractor, or

b) does not have a multiple-sensitive emergency-locking retractor seatbelt and has not been exempted from the requirement by notice in the Gazette.

5. A seatbelt fitted in a sideways-facing seating position in a motor vehicle first registered in New Zealand on or after 1 October 2002 is not a lap seatbelt.

6. A seatbelt is not of a design suitable for the vehicle.

7. The seatbelt webbing (including webbing attached to the buckle) has:

a) a cut, including a cut on the surface, or

b) a rip or tear, or

c) fraying, or

d) stretching (eg the belt has unusual web patterns or the webbing is deformed, will not lie flat or is curled or rippled), or

e) fading so that most of the colour has been bleached,

f) signs of chalking, or a powdery residue is evident on the webbing, or

g) become stiff, or

h) been dyed to conceal fading, or

i) contamination from grease, paint, solvents or similar products, or

j) is not securely attached to the tongue or the adjusting buckle or to any fittings that secure a seatbelt to the seatbelt anchorages, or

k) has otherwise deteriorated so as to reduce the performance of the seatbelt to below safe tolerance.

8. The seatbelt stitching:

a) is damaged or insecure, or

b) shows signs of home repairs, for example glueing, stitching by hand or home sewing machine, staples, bolts, or rivets, or

c) indicates that the ‘rip stitch’ system has been activated, that is the stitching is broken and a ‘REPLACE BELT’ label has been exposed near the lower seatbelt anchorage, or this label has been cut off.

9. A buckle and tongue:

a) are mismatched, or

b) do not lock, or

c) do not remain locked, or

d) do not release easily, or

e) are insecure when coupled.

10. A seatbelt stalk:

a) (wire-cable type) wires appear to be broken, or

b) (plastic covered webbing type) the webbing is deteriorated, frayed, cut or faded, or

c) (solid metal type) is corroded, cracked or buckled, or

d) is not the correct type for the vehicle or the seating position, or

e) has other weaknesses that reduce the performance of the seatbelt to below safe tolerance.

11. A seatbelt pretensioning system has not been replaced after activation.

12. A seatbelt anchorage shows signs of cracks or deformation.

13. The seatbelt webbing cannot be adjusted by the wearer.

14. A seatbelt cannot be readily fastened and released by the wearer.

15. When a seatbelt or part of a seatbelt is integral to a seat, the seat and the seat anchorages are not compatible in strength with the seatbelt or with that part of the seatbelt attached to the seat, as appropriate.

16. A seatbelt with a retractor that is not the vehicle manufacturer’s original equipment specification has been fitted and the seatbelt:

a) adversely affects the safety performance of the motor vehicle, or

b) is not recognised by a seatbelt manufacturer or the vehicle manufacturer as being suitable for use in the particular vehicle and seating position.

17. A seatbelt with a retractor that is not the vehicle manufacturer’s original equipment specification has been fitted and the seatbelt anchorages do not comply with the applicable requirements.

18. A seatbelt with a retractor that is not the vehicle manufacturer’s original equipment specification has been fitted and modifications that adversely affect the seatbelt, seatbelt anchorages or the structure of the vehicle are required.

19. A seatbelt anchorage that has not been designed to be fitted with more than one seatbelt has been fitted with more than one seatbelt.

20. A specialist seatbelt, other than one that is the manufacturer’s original equipment specification, has been fitted in any seating position in a heavy motor vehicle, and the seatbelt is not a specialist type approved by the NZTA.

21. If a seat in a motor vehicle can be rotated or reversed to face in different directions,

a) seatbelts are not provided for all seat directions, or

b) a notice has not been attached to the interior of the vehicle, so that it is easily visible to the vehicle’s occupants, indicating the direction in which the seat must face so that a seatbelt can be worn when the vehicle is moving.

22. A seatbelt in a heavy motor does not comply with a version of an approved vehicle standard in Table 6-1-1, List A or List B.

23. A seatbelt anchorage is not of the following type:

a) two-point anchorage for lap seatbelts,

b) three-point anchorage for lap-and-diagonal seatbelts without retractors,

c) three- or four-point anchorage for lap-and-diagonal seatbelts with retractors.

24. A seatbelt that has to comply with an approved vehicle standard does not have markings that comply with the requirements of that standard (Note 1).

25. Seatbelt markings are not legible and securely attached to the seatbelt.

26. A motorhome manufactured or converted prior to 1 October 2003 does not have seatbelts and seatbelt anchorages as required in tables 2.1 to 2.3 of Land Transport Rule: Seatbelts and Seatbelt Anchorages 2002. (Refer Technical bulletin 8).

27. A motorhome manufactured on or after 1 October 2003 or a motor vehicle converted into a motorhome on or after 1 October 2003 is not equipped with:

a) seatbelts and seatbelt anchorages that comply with the requirements for heavy motor vehicles in table 2.4 of Land Transport Rule: Seatbelts and Seatbelt Anchorages 2002 in all front seating positions(Refer Technical bulletin 8), or

b) does not have seatbelts or seatbelt anchorages as required for class MB vehicles in table 2.4 of Land Transport Rule: Seatbelts and Seatbelt Anchorages 2002 in as may seating position in the rear so that there are at least as many seating positions with seatbelts as there are sleeping berths. (Refer Technical Bulletin 13-8), or

c) a notice, attached in a prominent position, that:

i. recommends, on safety grounds, that when the vehicle is travelling, passengers use seats that are fitted with seatbelts, and

ii. advises passengers that it is compulsory to wear fitted seatbelts.

28. A seatbelt has been modified (Note 3).

29. A seatbelt has been modified temporarily to accommodate a child restraint, and the modification, including any device or accessory used in the modification:

a) adversely affects the operation and effectiveness of the child restraint, or

b) breaches an instruction issued by the manufacturer of the child restraint on the installation and operation of the child restraint, or

c) is likely to cause injury to an occupant of the motor vehicle.

30. A seatbelt retrofitted to a heavy vehicle on or after 1 April 2002 has not been assessed against the technical requirements of seatbelt anchorage, regarding geometry and load-carrying capacity, in any of the approved vehicle standards for seatbelt anchorages that apply to light motor vehicles.

31. A seatbelt retrofitted to a heavy vehicle on or after 1 April 2002 does not comply with section 2.3 of Land Transport Rule: Seatbelts and Seatbelt Anchorages 2002.

32. A seatbelt anchorage that is retrofitted in a heavy motor vehicle does not comply with the general safety requirements for seatbelt anchorages.

33. A seatbelt anchorage and its mounting location:

a) is not of a strength appropriate to both the motor vehicle and the attached seatbelt, or

b) is not structurally sound and free of corrosion, or

c) is damaged or distorted.

34. A seatbelt anchorage retrofitted to the vehicle cab does not comply with the requirements of Low Volume Vehicle Standard 175-00(01), Seatbelt Anchorages, sections 2.2 to 2.10 when no calculations are completed.

35. If calculations are used for proof of compliance for a seatbelt anchorage they do not take into account local deformation of the panel the seatbelt anchorage is attached to.

36. The requirements for the permitted areas and loadings from different standards have been mixed to certify a seatbelt anchorage.

37. Retrofitted seatbelt anchorages have not been designed to accept Webbing Grabber seatbelts when designed for front outer seating locations.

38. A repair to a seatbelt or seatbelt anchorage, or a repair to a motor vehicle that affects a seatbelt or seatbelt anchorage, has not restored the damaged or worn seatbelt, seatbelt anchorage or vehicle so that it is within safe tolerance of:

a) the state of the seatbelt, seatbelt anchorage or vehicle when manufactured, or

b) for a retrofitted seatbelt anchorage, the state when retrofitted.

39. A seatbelt has been repaired by someone other than the seatbelt manufacturer or the manufacturer’s agent, and the seatbelt repair is more extensive than a replacement of the webbing.

40. A vehicle that has been repaired after being involved in a crash has no diagnostic report completed by the manufacturer or an approved representative for seatbelts that are connected to an ECU.

41. A seatbelt that was worn during a crash and shows any sign of damage has not been replaced unless:

a) this is permitted in the manufacturer’s instructions

b) the seatbelt has been inspected and certified to be within safe tolerance by the manufacturer or an approved agent.

42. A seatbelt assembly that has been immersed or was fitted to a water damaged vehicle has not been inspected and certified to be within safe tolerance by the manufacturer or an approved agent.

Note 1

A seatbelt that does not have markings complies with the seatbelt rule if it is the vehicle manufacturer’s original equipment specification in a motor vehicle first registered in New Zealand before 1 January 1986, and it otherwise complies with applicable requirements.

Note 2

A motor vehicle that is designed exclusively for transporting a person detained by an officer of the Police or the corrections services, or by a person acting on behalf of the Police or the corrections services, must comply with the requirements for seatbelts and seatbelt anchorages in front seating positions, but does not have to comply with the requirements for other seating positions.

Note 3

A seatbelt may be modified if the modification is approved by the seatbelt manufacturer or vehicle manufacturer and is carried out in accordance with instructions issued by that manufacturer.

Table 6-1-1. Approved vehicle standards for seatbelts

List A

List B

Council Directive 77/541/EEC of 28 June 1977 on the approximation of the laws of the Member States relating to safety belts and restraint systems on motor vehicles

Council Directive 77/541/EEC of 28 June 1977 on the approximation of the laws of the Member States relating to safety belts and restraint systems on motor vehicles

UN/ECE Regulation No. 16, Uniform provisions concerning the approval of safety belts and restraint systems for adult occupants of power-driven vehicles (E/ECE324-E/ECE/TRANS/505/Rev.1/Add.15)

UN/ECE Regulation No. 16, Uniform provisions concerning the approval of safety belts and restraint systems for adult occupants of power-driven vehicles (E/ECE324-E/ECE/TRANS/505/Rev.1/Add.15)

Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 209, Seat Belt Assemblies

Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 209, Seat Belt Assemblies

Australian Design Rule 4, Seat Belts

Australian Design Rule 4, Seat Belts

Technical Standard for Seat Belt Assemblies (Japan)

Technical Standard for Seat Belt Assemblies (Japan)

Japanese Industrial Standard D 4604-1988, Seat Belts for Automobiles

Japanese Industrial Standard D4604-1988, Seat Belts for Automobiles

New Zealand Standard 5401: 1982, Specification for Seat Belt Assemblies for Motor Vehicles

New Zealand Standard 1662: 1969, Specification for Seat Belt Assemblies for Motor Vehicles

Australian Standard/New Zealand Standard 2596: 1995, Seat Belt Assemblies for Motor Vehicles

New Zealand Standard 5401: 1982, Specification for Seat Belt Assemblies for Motor Vehicles

Australian Standard E35.1: 1970, Seat Belt Assemblies for Motor Vehicles

Australian Standard E35.2: 1970, Seat Belt Assemblies (Including Retractors) for Motor Vehicles

British Standard AU 160c: 1971, Specification for Seat Belt Assemblies for Motor Vehicles

South African Bureau of Standards 1080-1983, Standard Specification for Restraining Devices (Safety Belts) for Occupants of Adult Build in Motor Vehicles (Revised requirements)

South African Bureau of Standards 1080-1983, Standard Specification for Restraining Devices (Safety Belts) for Occupants of Adult Build in Motor Vehicles (Revised requirements)

Table 6-1-2. Approved vehicle standards for seatbelt anchorages

Approved vehicle standards for seatbelt anchorages are:

Council Directive 76/115/EEC of 18 December 1975 on the approximation of the laws of the Member States relating to anchorages for motor vehicle safety belts

UN/ECE Regulation No. 14, Uniform provisions concerning the approval of vehicles with regard to safety belt anchorages
(E/ECE324-E/ECE/TRANS/505/Rev.1/Add.13)

Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 210, Seat Belt Assembly Anchorages – Passenger Cars, Multipurpose Passenger Vehicles, Trucks and Buses

Australian Design Rule 5, Anchorages for Seat Belts and Child Restraints

Technical Standard for Seat Belt Anchorages (Japan)

Summary of legislation

Applicable legislation
Application of requirements

1. A heavy motor vehicle manufactured before 1 October 2003 does not have to be fitted with seatbelts, but if seatbelts are fitted, they must be attached to seatbelt anchorages that are of an appropriate type, as specified below, and:

a) the seatbelts must comply with the applicable requirements in this chapter, and

b) the seatbelt anchorages must comply with the applicable requirements in this chapter, and

c) the approved vehicle standards, if applicable, for seatbelts in Table 6-1-1 and for seatbelt anchorages in Table 6-1-2.

Type of seatbelt required

2. A vehicle of class NB or class NC manufactured on or after 1 October 2003 must have:

a) lap-and-diagonal retractor seatbelts in the driver’s seating position and front outer seating position, and

b) lap seatbelts in all front middle seating positions.

Sensitivity of retractors

3. A seatbelt in a front outer seating position must have a multiple-sensitive emergency-locking retractor, unless the seatbelt has been exempted from this requirement by notice in the Gazette.

4. A seatbelt in a rear seating position may have a single-sensitive emergency-locking retractor or a multiple-sensitive emergency-locking retractor.

Seatbelts in sideways-facing seating positions

5. A seatbelt fitted in a sideways-facing seating position in a motor vehicle first registered in New Zealand:

a) before 1 October 2002, may be of any type

b) on or after 1 October 2002, must be a lap seatbelt.

General safety requirements for seatbelts (section 2.2)

6. A seatbelt must be of a design suitable for the vehicle, and must be strong, secure, in sound condition and in good working order.

7. Seatbelt webbing must not be cut, stretched, frayed or faded, or have otherwise deteriorated so as to reduce the performance of the seatbelt to below safe tolerance.

8. Seatbelt webbing must be securely attached to the tongue or the adjusting buckle and to any fittings that secure a seatbelt to the seatbelt anchorages, and must be able to be adjusted by the wearer.

9. The strands of the steel cables of a seatbelt stalk must not be damaged or have deteriorated, and the seatbelt stalk must not have other weaknesses that could reduce the performance of the seatbelt to below safe tolerance.

10. Seatbelt buckles, retractor mechanisms, or any other fittings intended to ensure the safe use of the seatbelt, must not have deteriorated to below safe tolerance.

11. A seatbelt must be able to be readily fastened and released by the wearer.

12. In assessing whether requirements 6 to 11 are complied with, a certifier may take into account evidence that a seatbelt is within the seatbelt manufacturer’s operating limits.

General safety requirements for seatbelt anchorages (section 2.3)

13. A seatbelt anchorage and its mounting location:

a) must be of a strength appropriate to both the motor vehicle and the attached seatbelt, and

b) must be structurally sound and free of corrosion, and

c) must not be damaged or distorted.

14. When a seatbelt or part of a seatbelt is integral to a seat, the seat and the seat anchorages must be compatible in strength with the seatbelt or with that part of the seatbelt attached to the seat, as appropriate.

15. In assessing whether requirement 13 is complied with, a certifier may take into account evidence that the seatbelt anchorage is within the motor vehicle manufacturer’s operating limits.

16. In assessing whether requirement 14 is complied with, a certifier may take into account evidence that a seat or seat anchorage is within the motor vehicle manufacturer’s or component manufacturer’s operating limits, including the type of seatbelt for which it was originally designed.

Upgrading of seatbelts (section 2.4)

17. Any type of lap seatbelt or lap-and-diagonal seatbelt, including a lap-and-diagonal seatbelt with any type of retractor, may be fitted if a seatbelt is not required for that seating position in a heavy vehicle.

18. A seatbelt with a retractor that is not the vehicle manufacturer’s original equipment specification may be fitted only if:

a) that seatbelt:

i. does not adversely affect the safety performance of the motor vehicle, and

ii. is recognised by a seatbelt manufacturer or the vehicle manufacturer as being suitable for use in a particular vehicle and seating position, and

b) the seatbelt anchorages comply with the applicable requirements, and

c) modifications that affect the seatbelt, seatbelt anchorages or the structure of the vehicle are not required.

19. A seatbelt anchorage may not be fitted with more than one seatbelt unless the anchorage has been designed to be fitted with more than one seatbelt.

Specialist seatbelts

20. A specialist seatbelt, other than one that is the manufacturer’s original equipment specification, may not be fitted in any seating position in a heavy motor vehicle, unless the seatbelt is a specialist type approved by the NZTA.

Seats with variable orientation

21. If a seat in a motor vehicle can be rotated or reversed to face in different directions, and seatbelts are not provided for all seat directions, a notice must be attached to the interior of the vehicle, so that it is easily visible to the vehicle’s occupants, indicating the direction in which the seat must face so that a seatbelt can be worn when the vehicle is moving.

Approved vehicle standards for seatbelts (section 2.5)

22. A seatbelt in a heavy motor vehicle must comply with a version of an approved vehicle standard in Table 6-1-1, List A or List B.

23. If a seatbelt is fitted, although it does not have to be fitted, that seatbelt must comply with a version of an approved vehicle standard in Table 6-1-1, List A.

Fitting, position and type requirements for seatbelt anchorages (section 2.6)

24. Seatbelt anchorages must be of the following types:

a) two-point anchorages for lap seatbelts,

b) three-point anchorages for lap-and-diagonal seatbelts without retractors,

c) three- or four-point anchorages for lap-and-diagonal seatbelts with retractors.

25. A seatbelt may be attached to seatbelt anchorages other than those of a type in requirement 24 if the seatbelt anchorages comply with all other applicable requirements in this chapter, and:

a) for a motor vehicle other than a scratch-built vehicle, the seatbelt is the vehicle manufacturer’s original equipment specification and is attached to seatbelt anchorages that are the vehicle manufacturer’s original equipment

b) for a scratch-built vehicle, the seatbelt anchorages comply with the general safety requirements.

Approved vehicle standards for seatbelt anchorages (section 2.7)
Retrofitted equipment

26. Retrofitted seatbelt anchorages must comply with the relevant requirements under modification and repair.

27. A seatbelt that has to comply with an approved vehicle standard must have markings that comply with the requirements of that standard (Note 1).

28. A seatbelt that does not have to comply with an approved vehicle standard must have markings that clearly identify that seatbelt as being of a recognised type for the motor vehicle concerned.

29. A seatbelt that complies with more than one vehicle standard may have more than one marking if at least one of the standards is an approved vehicle standard as required by this rule.

30. Seatbelt markings must be legible and be securely attached to the seatbelt.

Requirements for specific motor vehicles (section 3)
Motorhomes

31. A motorhome manufactured on or after 1 October 2003, or a motor vehicle converted into a motorhome on or after 1 October 2003, does not, for the purpose of this rule, belong to a class of vehicle in the Table of vehicle classes.

32. A motorhome manufactured on or after 1 October 2003 and a motor vehicle converted into a motorhome on or after 1 October 2003 must be equipped with:

a) seatbelts and seatbelt anchorages that comply with the requirements for heavy motor vehicles in all front seating positions, and

b) lap seatbelts that comply with the requirements for heavy motor vehicles in at least as many rear seating positions as the number of sleeping berths exceeds the number of front seating positions, and

c) a notice, attached in a prominent position, that:

i. recommends, on safety grounds, that when the vehicle is travelling, passengers use seats that are fitted with seatbelts, and

ii. advises passengers that it is compulsory to wear fitted seatbelts.

Modification and repair (section 4)
Modifications to seatbelts

33. A seatbelt must not be modified (Note 3).

34. A seatbelt may be modified temporarily to accommodate a child restraint, provided that the modification, including any device or accessory used in the modification:

a) does not adversely affect the operation and effectiveness of the child restraint, and

b) does not breach an instruction issued by the manufacturer of the child restraint on the installation and operation of the child restraint, and

c) is not likely to cause injury to an occupant of the motor vehicle, and

d) does not cause damage to the seatbelt.

Modifications to seatbelt anchorages

35. A modification to a motor vehicle that affects the performance of a seatbelt anchorage:

a) must not prevent the vehicle from complying with the applicable requirements in this rule, and

b) must be certified in accordance with Land Transport Rule: Vehicle Standards Compliance 2002.

Requirements for retrofitted seatbelt anchorages

36. A seatbelt anchorage that is retrofitted in a heavy motor vehicle must comply with the general safety requirements for seatbelt anchorages.

Repair and replacement (section 4.2)

37. A repair to a seatbelt or seatbelt anchorage, or a repair to a motor vehicle that affects a seatbelt or seatbelt anchorage, must restore the damaged or worn seatbelt, seatbelt anchorage or vehicle so that it is within safe tolerance of:

a) the state of the seatbelt, seatbelt anchorage or vehicle when manufactured, or

b) for a retrofitted seatbelt anchorage, the state when retrofitted.

38. A seatbelt may be repaired only by the seatbelt manufacturer or the manufacturer’s agent, except if the repair consists only of a replacement of the seatbelt.

39. A repair to a seatbelt or seatbelt anchorage, or a repair to a motor vehicle affecting a seatbelt or seatbelt anchorage, must comply with Land Transport Rule: Vehicle Repair 1998.

Retrofitted anchorages

40. Seatbelt anchorages retrofitted to the vehicle cab should comply with the requirements of Low Volume Vehicle Standard 175-00(01), Seatbelt Anchorages, sections 2.2 to 2.10 if no calculations are completed.

41. If calculations are used for proof of compliance they must take into account local deformation of the panel the seatbelt anchorage is attached to.

42. If calculations are used for proof of compliance the loads and permitted areas of the following standards may be used:

a) Council Directive 76/115/EEC of 18 December 1975

b) UN/ECE Regulation No. 14

c) Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 210

d) Australian Design Rule 5

e) Technical Standard of Seat Belt Anchorages (Japan)

43. The loadings, conditions and permitted area used must be from the same standard.

44. Retrofitted anchorages should be designed to accept Webbing Grabber seatbelts when designed for front outer seating locations.

6-2 Wheelchair restraints

Certifier categories: HVEC | HVCD

Reasons for rejection

1. Steps used for entry or exit:

a) do not have a non-slip surface

b) do not provide safe entry or exit for passengers

c) extend more than 20mm beyond the adjacent body line of the vehicle when manually operated in either the extended or retracted positions.

2. Protruding steps have not been constructed to minimise any possibility of injury to a person.

3. The floor of a heavy passenger service vehicle at the entrance or exit door is more than 410mm above the surface of the level roadway

4. Where the floor of a heavy passenger service vehicle at the entrance or exit door is more than 410mm above the surface of the level roadway and a step or ramp has been fitted:

a) the distance from the ground to the tread surface of the lowest entrance level is more than 410mm when measured with the vehicle unladen:

b) a panel has not been fitted to prevent the feet of seated passengers from protruding into any nearby stairwell or ramp, or

c) a guard-rail or equivalent item has not been fitted:

i. to the rearward side of any stairwell or ramp, if passengers can stand or sit behind the stairwell or ramp, or

ii. to the forward side of the stairwell or ramp if there is a rearward- or sideways-facing seat in front of it, or if passengers can stand in front of it, or

d) retractable steps do not comply with the requirements of the version of UN/ECE Regulation No. 36 which was applicable either:

i. if they were fitted before the vehicle entered service as a passenger service vehicle in New Zealand, at the time when the vehicle entered service as a passenger service vehicle in New Zealand, or

ii. if they were fitted after the vehicle entered service as a passenger service vehicle in New Zealand, at the time the steps were fitted.

5. If more than one step is provided, the rise from one step to the next is more than 300mm (Note 2).

6. The step depth from front edge to inner riser is less than 200mm (Note 2).

7. The step width parallel to the doorway is less than 550mm.

8. Where more than one step is provided, any intermediate step which is cut away to allow space for the door to open is less than 180mm deep and 250mm wide.

9. A wheelchair hoist and its attachment to a passenger service vehicle cannot be shown to comply with either:

a) the design and construction requirements of the versions of Australian Standard 3856.1-1991 and Australian Standard 3856.2-1991 or AS/NZS 3856.1 1998 and AS/NZS 3856.2 1998 that were applicable at the time of attachment, or

b) or be certified by an HV certifier as complying with, or being equivalent to, the technical requirements of Australian Standard 3856.1-1991 and Australian Standard 3856.2-1991 or AS/NZS 3856.1 1998 and AS/NZS 3856.2 1998 that were applicable at the time of attachment, or

c) all the following requirements:

i. from the driving position, there must be an unobstructed view, either directly or indirectly, of the exterior and interior of the doorway used for entry and exit, and of the ramp and wheelchair parking position, or

ii. ramps must have a non-slip surface, and

iii. ramps must be at least 800mm wide, or at least 760mm wide with a 20mm high safety ridge along the side edges, and

iv. ramps that do not have a small safety ridge along the side edges, must have a conspicuous stripe, at least 20mm wide, along the side edges of the ramp, and

v. there must be adequate illumination of the fully extended ramp to enable safe use during the hours of darkness, and

vi. power-operated ramps must comply with all of the following requirements:

d) if the ramp cannot be seen clearly by the driver, a sensor must be fitted so that the ramp stops or retracts if it meets an obstruction before it is fully extended, and

e) a device must be fitted which gives audible warning while the ramp is extending or retracting, and

f) there must be a safety system to prevent the vehicle from moving off while the ramp is extended. If this system is incorporated in the vehicle’s brake system, it must be known to be a design appropriate to that particular chassis and be installed as is appropriate for that particular chassis or must be approved and certified by a person authorised by the NZTA to do so, and

g) the ramp must be able to be operated manually in the event of a power failure, and

h) a ramp which is fully extended from a vehicle parked on a flat level surface must not have a gradient that is steeper than 1 in 4.

10. A restraint system for a wheelchair, or for a wheelchair and occupant:

a) does not comply with the design and construction requirements of the version of Australian Standard 2942-1987 or the version of AS2942-1994/Amdt1-1998 that was applicable at the time it was fitted, or

b) has not been certified by a person approved by the NZTA to show that it complies with, or is equivalent to, the technical requirements of the version of Australian Standard 2942-1987 which was applicable at the time it was fitted, or

c) does not comply with all of the following requirements:

i. there must be a horizontal handrail adjacent to the wheelchair parking position for wheelchair occupants to steady themselves while the passenger service vehicle is moving, and

ii. the wheelchair must be prevented from tipping backwards, and

iii. a head support must be fitted if the back of the wheelchair occupant’s head would be against a window, bulkhead or partition, and

iv. a restraint system must be fitted to prevent the wheelchair from swinging out of position or tipping over, and

v. there must be a sign adjacent to the wheelchair parking position stating that the restraint system must be secured and the wheelchair’s brakes applied, and

vi. the restraint system must include easily accessible quick-release mechanisms, and

vii. an HV certifier must certify that the seatbelt anchorage or alternative wheelchair restraint system complies with the version of Australian Design Rule 5/03 which was applicable at the time it was installed, or can withstand equal loadings in the case of an alternative restraint system.

Note 1

The following passenger service vehicles do not need to comply with this rule:

a) motor vehicles used in a service which are exempted from requiring a Transport Services Licence, as specified in the
Transport Services Licensing Act 1989,

b) motor vehicles which are specified as exempt vehicles in the Transport Services Licensing Act 1989,

c) ambulances designed to carry recumbent patients,

d) motor vehicles designed or modified for lawfully-detained persons,

e) New Zealand Defence Force dual-purpose trucks with removable seating,

f) New Zealand Defence Force armoured vehicles,

g) motor vehicles operated under a safety plan from the Occupational Safety and Health Service which are either:

i. used in venture tourism, or

ii. trailers designed, constructed and permitted to be drawn at a maximum speed of 50 km/h or less,

h) motorcycles and motorcycles with sidecars.

Note 2

The step dimension criteria specified in requirements 5 and 6 do not apply to:

a) a left-front passenger entrance providing access for less than three passenger seating positions, or

b) any entrance of an outdoor-access vehicle.

Note 3

A passenger service vehicle which has been modified on or after 1 September 1999 must comply with the requirements of this section which:

a) are relevant to that modification and to the vehicle, and

b) would be applicable to a vehicle entering service for the first time on that date.

Summary of legislation

Applicable references
  • Australian Standard 2942–1987
  • UN/ECE Regulation No. 52
  • Australian Standard 3856.1–1991
  • Australian Standard 3856.2–1991
  • AS/NZS 3856.1 1998
  • AS/NZS 3856.2 1998.
Applicable legislation
Entry and exit steps and ramps (section 2.3)

1. Entry and exit steps and ramps must provide safe entry or exit for the occupants of a passenger service vehicle, and the step-tread surfaces must be of a non-slip material.

2. Permanent external steps and ramps on the side of the passenger service vehicle must not extend more than 20mm beyond the adjacent body line of the vehicle, and must be constructed so that they are not likely to injure any person.

3. Manually operated extending steps on the side of the passenger service vehicle must not extend more than 20mm beyond the adjacent body line of the vehicle, and must be constructed so that they are not likely to injure any person either when they are folded away or when they are in the extended position.

Entry and exit steps and ramps (section 2.4)

4. If the floor of a heavy passenger service vehicle at the entrance or exit door is more than 410mm above the surface of the level roadway, there must be a step or ramp which complies with the following requirements:

a) the distance from the ground to the tread surface of the lowest entrance level must be less than 410 mm when measured with the unladen vehicle:

i. on a flat horizontal surface, and

ii. if the height of the suspension can be adjusted from the driver’s seat, the vehicle is in its lowest suspension position, and

b) a panel must be fitted to prevent the feet of seated passengers from protruding into any nearby stairwell or ramp, and

c) a guard-rail or equivalent item must be fitted:

i. to the rearward side of any stairwell or ramp, if passengers can stand or sit behind the stairwell or ramp, and

ii. to the forward side of the stairwell or ramp if there is a rearward- or sideways-facing seat in front of it, or if passengers can stand in front of it, and

d) retractable steps must comply with the requirements of the version of UN/ECE Regulation No. 36 which was applicable either:

i. if they were fitted before the vehicle entered service as a passenger service vehicle in New Zealand, at the time when the vehicle entered service as a passenger service vehicle in New Zealand, or

ii. if they were fitted after the vehicle entered service as a passenger service vehicle in New Zealand, at the time the steps were fitted.

5. Entry and exit steps must meet the following dimensional requirements:

a) if more than one step is provided, the rise from one step to the next must be less than 300mm, and

b) the step depth from front edge to inner riser must be at least 200mm, and

c) the step width parallel to the doorway must be at least 550mm.

6. If more than one step is provided, any intermediate step which is cut away to allow space for the door to open must be at least 180mm deep and at least 250mm wide.

Wheelchair hoists and ramps (section 8.2)

7. A wheelchair hoist and its attachment to a passenger service vehicle must either:

a) comply with the design and construction requirements of the versions of Australian Standard 3856.1-1991 and Australian Standard 3856.2-1991 or AS/NZS 3856.1 1998 and AS/NZS 3856.2 1998 that were applicable at the time of attachment, or

b) be certified in accordance with Land Transport Rule: Vehicle Standards Compliance 2002 as complying with, or being equivalent to, the technical requirements of Australian Standard 3856.1-1991 and Australian Standard 3856.2-1991 or AS/NZS 3856.1 1998 and AS/NZS 3856.2 1998 that were applicable at the time of attachment.

8. A wheelchair ramp and its fitting to a passenger service vehicle must:

a) comply with the design and construction requirements of the versions of Australian Standard 3856.1-1991 and Australian Standard 3856.2-1991 that were applicable at the time of attachment, or

b) be certified  in accordance with Land Transport Rule: Vehicle Standards Compliance 2002 as complying with, or being equivalent to, the technical requirements of Australian Standard 3856.1-1991 and Australian Standard 3856.2-1991 thatwere applicable at the time of attachment, or

c) comply with all the following requirements:

i. from the driving position, there must be an unobstructed view, either directly or indirectly, of the exterior and interior of the doorway used for entry and exit, and of the ramp and wheelchair parking position, and

ii. ramps must have a non-slip surface, and

iii. ramps must be at least 800mm wide, or at least 760mm wide with a 20mm high safety ridge along the side edges, and

iv. ramps that do not have a small safety ridge along the side edges, must have a conspicuous stripe, at least 20mm wide, along the side edges of the ramp, and

v. there must be adequate illumination of the fully extended ramp to enable safe use during the hours of darkness, and

vi. power-operated ramps must comply with all of the following requirements:

d) if the ramp cannot be seen clearly by the driver, a sensor must be fitted so that the ramp stops or retracts if it meets an obstruction before it is fully extended, and

e) a device must be fitted which gives audible warning while the ramp is extending or retracting, and

f) there must be a safety system to prevent the vehicle from moving off while the ramp is extended. If this system is incorporated in the vehicle’s brake system, it must be known to be a design appropriate to that particular chassis and be installed as is appropriate for that particular chassis or must be approved and certified by a person authorised by the NZTA to do so, and

g) the ramp must be able to be operated manually in the event of a power failure, and

h) a ramp which is fully extended from a vehicle parked on a flat level surface must not have a gradient that is steeper than 1 in 4.

Wheelchair and wheelchair-occupant restraints (section 8.4)

9. A restraint system for a wheelchair, or for a wheelchair and occupant, must:

a) comply with the design and construction requirements of the version of Australian Standard 2942-1987 version of AS2942-1994/Amdt1-1998 that was applicable at the time it was fitted, or

b) be certified in accordance with Land Transport Rule: Vehicle Standards Compliance 2002 to show that it complies with, or is equivalent to, the technical requirements of the version of Australian Standard 2942-1987 that was applicable at the time it was fitted, or

c) comply with all of the following requirements:

i. there must be a horizontal handrail adjacent to the wheelchair parking position for wheelchair occupants to steady themselves while the passenger service vehicle is moving, and

ii. the wheelchair must be prevented from tipping backwards, and

iii. a head support must be fitted if the back of the wheelchair occupant’s head would be against a window, bulkhead or partition, and

iv. a restraint system must be fitted to prevent the wheelchair from swinging out of position or tipping over, and

v. there must be a sign adjacent to the wheelchair parking position stating that the restraint system must be secured and the wheelchair’s brakes applied, and

vi. the restraint system must include easily accessible quick-release mechanisms, and

vii. a person authorised by the NZTA must certify that the seatbelt anchorage or alternative wheelchair restraint system complies with the version of Australian Design Rule 5/03 which was applicable at the time it was installed, or can withstand equal loadings in the case of an alternative restraint system.