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INDUSTRY FOCUSROAD HAULAGE


The lightning speed at which technology develops is creating


new opportunities for the industry, according to the FHWA.


USD4,245 to USD5,440 in aggregate dollars. The final report acknowledged “the maze


of rules and regulations that specialised carriers face in making interstate movements”. It recognised that, in some states, these regulations are not only dated, but have no basis in any empirical data or evidence.


Significant negative impact “We have long suspected that a lack of permit harmonisation has had a significant negative economic impact in general and has placed an onerous and problematic financial burden on businesses specifically,” said Steven Todd, SC&RA vice president of transportation. “Our objective in commissioning the ATRI study was to see if what we suspected was true.” He added that these studies, as well as the


US Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration’s (FHWA) study, ‘Best practices in permitting in oversize and


overweight vehicles’, continue to support the association’s Uniform Permit Transport 2021 (UPT2021) initiative, which aims to establish permit harmonisation across all 50 states. Two of the primary goals for UPT2021


are to encourage all states to allow minimum weight thresholds for the most common industry configurations, and to analyse and issue permits via automated permit systems. More than 30 states presently use systems that auto-issue permits, in some cases for loads greater than 16 ft (4.9 m) wide and high. The aim is to gain 100 percent compliance nationwide by 2021. The FHWA published its study in


February 2018. It found that with automated permitting, the average permit turnaround time decreased from several days and hours to just minutes for most routine and some OS/OW permits. It also found that the accuracy of permits dramatically improved,


ESTA receives MEP backing


Caroline Nagtegaal, a Dutch member of the European parliament (MEP), has penned a letter to the European Commission (EC) in support of calls from the European association of abnormal road transport and mobile cranes (ESTA) for the development of heavy transport corridors in Europe. ESTA is also campaigning to harmonise the permit


issuing process and to reduce the bureaucracy caused by the maze of different permits required by EU member states. Nagtegaal’s action follows a meeting in March with ESTA director Ton Klijn, who detailed the


130 May/June 2019


problems faced by exceptional transport companies operating across Europe. The timing of the MEP’s intervention is


significant, according to ESTA, as talks are currently under way in Brussels on the financing of key infrastructure networks from 2021 to 2027 as part of the Connecting Europe Facility. Those discussions include a request from


European armed forces and NATO to strengthen the continent’s road infrastructure to make it easier to move heavy military loads. Nagtegaal asked the EC whether it has plans to


as did roadway safety for all motorists. Further still, the FHWA said that, as a result of moving to automated permitting, states were able to achieve staff efficiencies and reduce costs.


Speed of change “The lightning speed at which technology develops is creating new opportunities for the industry,” said FHWA. “Moving forward, specialised transportation will reap the benefits of accurate global positioning system (GPS) data, geo-fencing, and software integration strategies. Similarly, as the technology expands, the cost of using these applications should decrease. This will provide state and local authorities with a broader list of options to serve carriers.” Todd added: “There is a consensus


regarding the safety and efficiency of automated permitting systems and all of this research backs that conclusion.” HLPFI


reduce bureaucracy and simplify licensing arrangements for exceptional transport. She called on the commission to focus on the digitalisation of permits for abnormal road transport operations, something that is already happening for normal truck transport within the European Union (EU). She said: “I am optimistic that my and ESTA’s


concerns will be taken seriously and acted upon because they fit into the EU’s Connecting Europe strategy, something that is high profile. “I will also be raising this issue with colleagues


active in the transport sector and with other countries within the European Parliament’s Liberal Group. ESTA’s concerns are a clear example of how the internal market needs to be developed and reformed,” Nagtegaal added.


www.heavyliftpfi.com


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