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Transport body reacts to longer trailer trial

25 June 2014 #News #Top Stories #Trailer

A road transport industry body has responded to the publication of the second annual report of longer semi trailers.

The 10-year trial was launched in 2012 allowing companies to apply for a share of 1,800 allocations to operate longer vehicles.

The vehicles allow more goods to be transported at once, which should allow operators to reduce the number of trucks on the road. The report shows that between 600,000 and 900,000 vehicle kilometres have been saved by use of the longer semi-trailers in the trial so far, which also means reduced carbon and other pollutant emissions.

The report also shows that longer semi-trailers are operating safely, with a lower rate of injury incidents than standard trailers.

Andy Mair, Head of Engineering, FTA (Freight Transport Association) said, “FTA is a supporter of the use of longer semi-trailers, as there are significant environmental and efficiency benefits on offer from deploying these vehicles.

“But FTA has always stated that it is not a vehicle for all sectors and will only be viable on journeys where the goods carried are high volume, low weight as vehicle fill can be improved.”

Speaking about the trial, Transport Minister Stephen Hammond said, “Longer semi-trailers enable freight companies to transport more goods, more efficiently so could have significant economic and environmental benefits – it is great news that these longer trucks are now delivering real results in fewer journeys and it is encouraging that there have been involved in fewer incidents than standard trucks.

“Longer semi-trailers should provide significant economic and environmental benefits to the UK. The operational trial will enable the government to look at these issues further and also represents an opportunity for industry to show the benefits these trailers can bring to the UK.”

The government predicts the trial will save over 3,000 tonnes of CO2 over its duration. The overall benefits are estimated at £33 million over 10 years.

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