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In the Wiltshire town of Westbury, residents have long complained about HGV drivers ignoring area weight limits. Wiltshire Council has responded by forming a volunteer watch group consisting of individuals willing to go out and record registration details from offending vehicles and reporting that information to the local trading standards department. At issue is the Station Road Bridge, which had a weight limit of 7.5 tonnes.

Councillor David Jenkins spearheaded the watch group after receiving numerous complaints from residents. Jenkins says the scheme is being operated on a temporary basis to see whether it works well or not. If it does, the pilot scheme is expected to be expanded. However, Jenkins says he still needs more volunteers to make it happen.

According to residents, weight limit signs for the Station Road Bridge are being routinely ignored by HGV drivers, despite being in full view. They hope reporting violators to the trading standards department will bring an end to the practice. Those reported for the first time will receive a direct warning from the department by way of a written letter. Subsequent violations will be subject to potential prosecution.

The Wiltshire programme is modelled on a similar programme in Bradford on Avon. A voluntary watch group was set up there in 2011, resulting in numerous warning letters and 30 prosecutions thus far. Residents in Westbury hope their volunteer watch programme is equally successful.

Driver Compliance Important

A basic component of any HGV training course is compliance with local regulations, including weight limits. When weight limits are put in place, they are done so for a reason. Weight limits protect roads and bridges from unnecessary wear and tear usually associated with heavy goods vehicles. Moreover, in cases where those roads and bridges are not physically capable of handling the weight, limits is a safety precaution.

There really is no good reason for HGV drivers to ignore weight limits. If a driver misses a sign and ends up on a restricted road inadvertently, that’s one thing. Nevertheless, to see a sign and ignore it, whether it be to save time or avoid some sort of hassle, is unacceptable. It gives the entire haulage and transport sector a bad name. Doing so also causes safety and road wear concerns.

Train with Us

The HGV Training Centre emphasises the need for drivers to obey local regulations in every HGV training course we offer. We spend a lot of time talking about safety and regulations because we know it is best for both drivers and the industry. It is also best for local residents as well. Safety and compliance should always come first.

If you are interested in becoming a commercial driver, we offer training for most types of vehicles including lorries, tipper trucks, box trucks, coaches and buses, and heavy construction equipment. We also offer forklift certification and CPC driver training to individual and company drivers. Regardless of your commercial driver training needs, we have a course suitable for you.

Sources:

Wiltshire Times – http://www.wiltshiretimes.co.uk/news/11085540.Volunteers_wanted_for_Westbury_HGV_watch/

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