UK government spokespeople have stated that longer goods vehicles might be permanently allowed on Britain’s roads from as early as next year. The Department for Transport has published its response to its consultation on the introduction of longer-semi trailers (LSTs), with the majority of respondents in favor of their use. A nine-year trial has shown them to be ‘safer, more economical and better for the environment’.
Officials said the vehicles, which can be up to 15.65 metres long, could remove up to one in eight freight journeys by carrying the same amount of cargo in what amounts to a smaller amount of lorries.
Highwaysmagazine.co.uk quoted Transport Secretary Grant Shapps as saying: ‘This Government is committed to fighting climate change and decarbonising our transport network, and we are working at pace to achieve net zero by 2050. Today’s announcement is a vital step forwards as we work to introduce more environmentally friendly freight to our roads and build back greener.’
The UK government will also soon launch a separate trial using heavier-than-normal, 48-tonne lorries, which will be able to transport heavier containers directly to and from rail depots so goods can be transported across the country by train. Officials said that the current 44 tonnes maximum weight makes it difficult to carry heavier goods to rail depots, meaning goods are dispersed between more lorries to be taken to their end destination by road.
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