Ban HGVs on Sundays, says IHE president
Richard Hayes, the incoming president of the Institute of Highway Engineers (IHE), has certainly started his term with a bang by calling for HGVs to be banned from UK motorways on Sundays and has written to Roads Minister Mike Penning, asking for the Department of Transport to investigate the possibility.
Hayes says that there are precedents’ in mainland Europe for such a move, citing France, Spain and Italy, where vehicles with a gross weight of 7.5 tonnes and above are banned on Sundays and public holidays. Having said that, it is true that there is a wide variation in how long the restrictions last, when they start and finish and which vehicles are covered.
Says Hayes: “Weekends should be a relaxing time on our roads, when the network is used mainly by the general public going about their leisure activities. Many drivers are intimidated by heavy lorries thundering up and down our motorways and major A roads. Surely it is not too much to ask that we take some of the tension out of the system for one day a week.”
He believes the issue of Sunday road use by HGVs should be investigated as part of the DofT’s recently-announced programme for reforming the strategic road network, which aims to increase the quality and efficiency of the national network.