Thursday, August 17, 2017

Sverdlovsk officials propose 13.2 ton weight limit for public highways

The Sverdlovsk Ministry of Transport and Communications and the traffic police held a conference on Thursday to address traffic congestion in the area caused by large trucks using area highways.

During the conference, transportation management officials suggested the installation of devices throughout Yekaterinburg that will monitor the weight of each car seeking to enter the highway. With these mobile weight control devices, a commercial vehicle exceeding the weight limit for a highway would not be allowed to drive on it, the officials said, according to Oblastnaya Gazeta.

The ministry representatives said such a process would not only remove a large portion of oversized commercial vehicles from commuter roads, but would give incentive to commercial vehicle companies to reduce the amount of cargo in each truck. Truck companies which attempt to overload their vehicles to reduce expenses could be issued a fine.

"Of course, the implementation of this provision will ensure the flow of funds to the Federal Road Fund that in the future will increase funding for the repair and construction of federal highways," Deputy Transport Minister Sergei Frolov said, according to Oblastnaya Gazeta. "However, the introduction of a charge on federal roads would entail a redistribution of cargo flows on the road of regional significance, which causes well-founded fear in the subjects of the Russian Federation and the owners of public roads of regional importance. In this case, the current legislation does not allow the region to establish a similar claim for payment to the owners of vehicles, in addition to the temporary restriction of movement imposed seasonally."

Area motorists who attended Thursday's conference expressed enthusiasm for any measure taken which would extend punitive measures to transportation companies using public highways to move illegally heavy shipments. The abundance of over-loaded trucks on regional highways in the last few years have lead to the rapid deterioration of public roadways.

The proposed weight limit on any commercial vehicle utilizing a public highway is 13.2 tons, Oblastnaya Gazeta reports.