Superlorries may soon descend on British roads

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Car Rental News - 05/10/2009


EU considering draft porposal to allow larger lorries on roads

'Superlorries' currently banned from EU roads except in Sweden and Finland, may soon be allowed on British roads, if a proposal currently being considered by the European Union is passed.

The draft proposal being discussed in Brussels may see provide the go-ahead required for superlorries to gain free access across EU member states. The regulation, if passed, would increase the permitted size of lorries to be raised to 60 tons and 82ft, beginning next year. Currently, only lorries weighing less than 44 tons are allowed on British roads.

There has been strong opposition to these "road trains" being allowed on UK roads. Opponents insist that allowing these lorries, which can be up to one-third longer than the largest lorries currently permitted to operate in Britain, would pose a significant risk to the safety of other vehicles and drivers.

Superlorries are notorious for the various steering and manoeuvering difficulties they present, particularly at roundabouts. Concerns regarding their weight have also been expressed, with some claiming that bridges in the UK would not be able to cope with the extra weight.

Proponents of the proposed regulation insist that the lorries would in fact reduce congestion, by eliminating the need for repeat journeys. They argue that superlorries, thanks to their weight being spread over a larger area, cause less wear and tear on the roads than say, two lorries only half the size.

A spokesperson for the Department of Transport has, however, said that such a regulation would see strong opposition, and is unlikely to be passed by the EU.

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