It is official – maximum truck weights have been increased by the Government to 52 tonnes under a permit regime as announced by the Government in a carefully timed press release just before Easter. What isn’t so clear is how the trucking industry will respond. If they pay according to the current RUC regime, then trucking companies will pay between 16 and 21% more per tonne of freight.
Furthermore, councils are unlikely to approve permits for heavy trucks without compensation of the damage they cause. In moving from 44 tonnes to 52 tonnes, trucks of the same axle configuration are also likely to cause twice as much damage to the roading network.
There needs to be stronger regulation of the trucking industry. There are already too many accidents involving trucks, and the number of roll over accidents will only get worse as trucks get heavier.