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Like most other small towns in Somerset, Bruton is a riverside community with narrow streets, closely packed houses, and a population of fewer than 3,000 people. Yet the town is now apparently at the mercy of HGV drivers using it as a bypass to avoid an 18-mile detour resulting from the closure of a local bridge.

According to BBC News, the A371 bridge near Castle Cary was closed in July for repairs. It will remain closed until sometime in November. In the meantime, detour signs are posted to direct HGVs through an appropriate detour suitable for their size and weight. Yet some drivers are choosing not to take that route.

Instead, residents of Bruton claim the large vehicles are using the roads through their town, because it is a shorter route. They say drivers are not paying attention to the 7.5 tonne weight restriction clearly posted on signs leading in and out of the town. In addition to damaging the roads, the vehicles pose a real threat to houses and other buildings.

In response, a lorry watch has been set up enabling local residents to jot down number plates and report them to the local constabulary. Officials say they will not be shy about issuing tickets to offending drivers. Those tickets can come with substantial fines upon conviction.

Responsible HGV Drivers

The HGV Training Centre wants to encourage HGV drivers to pay attention to weight limits and other restrictions wherever they drive. Situations like the one in Bruton give cause for heavy criticism of the haulage and transport sectors. Unfortunately, a small handful of inconsiderate drivers often give the entire industry a bad name.

Drivers need to understand that the 7.5 tonne weight limit in the town of Bruton exists for the protection of local roads, buildings, and the residents themselves. Constant lorry traffic through the town will inevitably result in damage that someone must repair, not to mention potentially more serious consequences. Heaven forbid an accident should seriously injure or kill a local resident.

Training Is Important

As one of the leading driver training companies in the UK, the HGV Training Centre spends a lot of time focusing on safety and compliance with regulations. Our ultimate goal is to make sure every student passing through our doors not only has the knowledge to operate a vehicle safely, but also the mindset of doing so as well.

When HGV drivers are faithful to their training, it benefits everyone. Roads are safer, towns are protected from unwarranted traffic, and the economy is stimulated through the moving of cargo from one destination to another. Yet those drivers failing to adhere to training standards can cause big problems for highway safety and road maintenance.

The HGV Training Centre appeals to lorry drivers to follow the appropriate detour until that A371 bridge reopens. It may add a little time to your journey, but it will be better for everyone in the long run.

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