Heavier trucks risk road safety

Press Release – New Zealand Labour Party

The Government’s decision to allow heavier trucks on our roads is another move by National that will put the safety of Kiwi motorists at risk, Labour’s transport spokesperson Darren Hughes said today.Heavier trucks risk road safety

The Government’s decision to allow heavier trucks on our roads is another move by National that will put the safety of Kiwi motorists at risk, Labour’s transport spokesperson Darren Hughes said today.

“Transport Minister Steven Joyce’s obsession with diverting more heavy traffic on to regional roads and motorways along with moves to slash funding for road policing and maintenance will do nothing to keep roads safe,” Darren Hughes said.

“Labour initiated a trial allowing trucks of up 50 tonnes, but Steven Joyce believes it is safe to allow heavier trucks on our roads.

“The funding to keep provincial roads safe is a shambles. National’s approach has been to starve provincial councils of funding necessary to keep regional roads safe. Many of these roads are vital to the local economy.

“National seems intent on increasing the volume of heavy traffic on our roads but isn’t willing to commit to ensuring motorists are safe on them.”

Labour’s Transport safety spokesperson Darien Fenton said the Government must ensure the safety of truck drivers carrying the heavier loads.

“This is a serious issue as there have been 13 deaths so far this year in crashes involving trucks, including two this week,” Darien Fenton said.

“This is an issue that affects not only truck drivers, but all those who share the road with heavy vehicles.
“National’s recently released Safer Journeys road safety strategy included some initiatives for improving the safety of heavy vehicles over the next ten years.

“The government needs to be doing a whole lot more to ensure the safety of motorists now it has given the green light for heavier trucks on our roads.”

ENDS

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