INDEPENDENT NEWS

83 Foot Long Trucks On Our Roads Would Be Madness

Published: Mon 9 Jul 2001 11:37 AM
8 July 2001
83 Foot Long Trucks On Our Roads Would Be Madness - Greens
Green Party Transport Spokesperson Sue Kedgley said a Transit proposal for new rules to allow 83 foot trucks and 62 tonne trucks on our roads were sheer madness, and should be consigned swiftly to the dustbin of history.
The Transit proposals are part of a series of rules relating to truck size and safety that are being put out for public discussion by the Land Transport Safety Authority. The LTSA have now released their discussion document on their website.
Ms Kedgley said Transit's proposed new rule would allow a fifty percent increase in the weight of trucks and a 25% increase in the length of already long trucks. "Our roads are simply not designed to accommodate these juggernaut trucks. The LTSA acknowledges that many of New Zealand's roads - even state highways - are narrow and mountainous, with steep gradients and narrower road widths than are found in other countries. "It is quite simply hazardous for juggernaut trucks to travel on these roads."
Ms Kedgley is calling on Transport Minister Mark Gosche to reject the proposed Transit rule changes, as heavier and longer trucks would increase the dangers to other motorists, significantly damage our roads and undermine efforts to get freight onto rail where it belongs.
Ms Kedgley said that while trucks make up only 3% of the total vehicle fleet in New Zealand, they were primarily responsible for 31% of fatal crashes and 46% of injury crashes in 1996-8, according to LTSA figures. "Their figures also show that our truck-crash rate is two to four times higher than the USA and United Kingdom," said Ms Kedgley.
"The number of trucks that are involved in crashes in New Zealand is extraordinarily high," she said. If we are to promote road safety and reduce the number of accidents on our roads, our focus should be on getting heavy freight - particularly toxic cargo - off our roads and onto rail or coastal shipping."
Ms Kedgley said Transit proposals to upgrade 14-16% of bridges on our roading network and to redesign many roads to accommodate heavier trucks would be hugely expensive, and did not make sense. "The money would be much better spent reclaiming control over New Zealand's rail network than upgrading our roads for supertrucks.
"It is absurd to encourage the trucking industry to truck even more freight by road, when there are perfectly good, under-utilized railway lines running parallel to our state highways.
"This proposal is madness. It will further compromise the safety of motorists in New Zealand, waste a fortune of taxpayers money in the process and undermine the viability of rail as a safe, efficient and energy efficient means of freight transport," said Ms Kedgley.
Ends

Next in New Zealand politics

21 month prison sentence for sharing mosque shooting video
By: RNZ
Afghan villagers pull out of Operation Burnham inquiry
By: RNZ
Children’s Commissioner to conduct review
By: Office of the Children's Commissioner
ACT: Regulatory Constitution will improve quality of law
By: ACT New Zealand
Revised offer for teachers and principals
By: New Zealand Government
National supporting primary sector growth
By: New Zealand National Party
Review board upholds mosque attack video's classification
By: RNZ
Are intelligence agencies watching the right people?
By: RNZ
Name Release 5 – Christchurch Terror Attack
By: New Zealand Police
Christchurch Mosque Terror Attack 15/3/19
By: Scoop Full Coverage
Withdrawal of Afghan villagers as core inquiry participants
By: Inquiry into Operation Burnham
Operation Burnham Inquiry - Minute No 16.
By: Inquiry into Operation Burnham
Foundation sets up givealittle page for Afghan villagers
By: Human Rights Foundation of NZ
Op Burnham Inquiry: GCSB failed to hand emails to IGIS
By: RNZ
Tova interviews Tanya Sammons, Tyrone Marks, Aaron Smale
By: Newshub Nation
View as: DESKTOP | MOBILEWe're in BETA! Send Feedback © Scoop Media