13 Aug 2009

Auckland rejects heavy truck proposal

12:52 pm on 13 August 2009

Auckland Regional Council has become the second regional authority to vote against allowing heavier trucks to travel on its roads.

The Ministry of Transport has been receiving submissions on its proposal to allow maximum truck weights to rise from 44 tonnes to 53 tonnes.

The proposal is designed to make road freight more economical and to lower the number of trucks on the roads.

Road transporters consider the network between Auckland, Waikato and Tauranga important and as it centres around a lot of agricultural and horticultural activity, freight around those areas is only projected to grow.

But Auckland Regional Council's transport and urban development committee has voted against the rule change, saying the economic benefits would not outweigh the social and environmental costs associated with the proposal.

Chair Christine Rose says larger or heavier trucks would require road infrastructure to be upgraded and cause significantly greater wear and tear on roads.