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Weighbridges used for trade 

Weighbridges determine the mass of a vehicle, including prime movers and connected trailers.

You can use them to weigh goods like farm produce, agricultural products, scrap metal and landscape materials weighing over 3 tonnes.

For trade, you can use weighbridges to:

  • buy or sell goods
  • determine freight costs or other charges based on weight
  • determine a tax.

Public weighbridges

Public weighbridges are open for the public to use, usually for a charge.

Find a public weighbridge

Locate a public weighbridge in your area.

Weighing methods

There are 2 methods:

  • direct: is the most accurate method and weighs the entire vehicle in one weighing, you should aim to use this method
  • end-and-end: if your vehicle does not fit on the platform, you can weigh the front and rear separately. Weighbridges must be approved for this method by the National Measurement Institute (NMI).

Email to find out how to apply.

You can also use a weighbridge to separately record the weight of axles (or groups of axles) to comply with local transport regulations.

Operating a weighbridge

If you own a weighbridge used for trade, you must ensure that:

  • the NMI has approved your type of weighbridge 
  • a servicing licensee has verified your weighbridge
  • you and your operators are correctly trained to conduct weighings in the correct manner
  • you keep the weighbridge clean and in good working order
  • a servicing licensee verifies your weighbridge after each repair or adjustment.

You are responsible for making sure your weighbridge weighs correctly at all times.

You should have your weighbridge tested regularly to make sure it weighs correctly.

Operating public weighbridges

To operate a public weighbridge, the person who makes a weighbridge available for public weighings must:

Conducting weighings

Operators conducting a weighing using a weighbridge must ensure:

  • there is a continuous gap between the weighbridge platform and the edge of the weighbridge surround to prevent binding
  • there are no stones or other foreign matter jammed between the platform and its surrounds as this may cause binding
  • the weighbridge structure and surrounds are in good condition with no loose bolts or broken, missing or rusty components
  • there is no excess water on the weighbridge platform during weighing as water can accumulate and affect zero or balance 
  • there is no debris on the weighbridge before each weighing
  • loose loads, like sand, are not accumulating in the pit or building up on the platform as it can affect zero or balance
  • there is no water or debris under the weighbridge platform
  • the indicator shows zero prior to use.

Weighbridge construction

For weighbridges with or without a pit. 

Weighbridges with a pit

Weighbridges with a pit must be constructed to comply with regulation 3.6 of the National Trade Measurement Regulations 2009.

For the purposes of regulation 3.6, a weighbridge with a pit also includes a full load cell weighbridge constructed without access to the load cells from the external edge(s) of the platform and the load cell(s) cannot be accessed from above.

Weighbridges without a pit

Weighbridges without a pit must be constructed to comply with regulation 3.7 of the National Trade Measurement Regulations 2009

For the purposes of regulation 3.7, a weighbridge without a pit also includes a weighbridge constructed without access to the load cell(s) from the external edge(s) of the platform, but with suitable access to load cells from above to:

  • provide access for servicing and maintenance
  • view the information on the load cell data plate
  • maintain the weighbridge floor so it is clear of obstructions.

This is considered to comply with the requirements of regulation 3.7(1)(c)(i).

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