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  • Position paper: Longer and heavier lorries in the EU

    The introduction of longer and heavier lorries (LHVs) could lead to more CO2 and pollutant emissions, increased road accident risk and higher infrastructure bills for taxpayers. These impacts are contrary to the EU’s objectives to make transport cleaner and safer. By making road transport cheaper, it will also undermine the EU (Transport White Paper) goal of shifting freight to rail. Therefore, T&E believes the introduction of LHVs is unacceptable under the present conditions.

    In this position paper, T&E recommends that until the necessary conditions are put in place, the use of LHVs is restricted to national operations only. The requirements to be met before cross-border use is further considered are the following:

    1.A swift update of the road charging directive (Eurotoll) to mandate the full internalization of the infrastructure, safety and environmental external costs of all lorries, in particular LHVs; 
    2.Safety standards for LHVs, in particular with regards to additional safety equipment, vehicle age, regular maintenance, safety checks and driver training;
    3.Measures to reduce negative impacts on rail freight, in particular effective weight limits (44t) and control for lorries and consideration of restricting cross-border LHV use to combined transport;
    4.Safe and aerodynamic redesign of lorry cabs to improve lorry safety, fuel economy and reduce CO2 emissions; 
    5.Even if these requirements are met, it should still be left to national or regional governments to decide whether or not to consider LHVs.