Apr 29, 2023
Banburyshire village aghast at prospect of 'super lorries' that may cause mayhem on bottleneck corner
Farthinghoe’s parish council chairman Mick Morris said the new jumbo trucks with
Farthinghoe's parish council chairman Mick Morris said the new jumbo trucks with trailers, up to 61 feet long, would be funnelled along the A422 through the village as the only obvious road eastwards from the ever-expanding industrial estates of Banbury.
A government legislation earlier this month will allow the super lorries to roll out from May 31.
Mr Morris said: "A Department of Transport (DfT) consultation has been going on for a long time now with trial fleets of trucks in operation. We’re not aware of any steps to deal with the problems they will cause at pinch points such as Farthinghoe which are already untenable.
"It is very clear the road in Farthinghoe is also collapsing, possibly caused by heavy lorries bouncing off the kerb back onto the road. We can actually see the surface water drain pipes beneath the tarmac.
"Northamptonshire and Oxfordshire are now saturated with enormous logistics warehouses, with more in the pipeline. Our roads will also be saturated with these new trucks in no time." he said.
"It is DfT introducing these larger trucks but it is their offshoot, National Highways, who make pathetic responses to the Planning Applications for logistics warehousing. The A422 (A422/A421) is a designated Major Road Network (MRN) road, with MRN being introduced to more efficiently link traffic between their Strategic Road Network highways - yet they are blinkered to the effect these warehouses have on the A422.
"Anyone who intimates that the A422 is a dual carriageway which links the M40 with the A43 at Brackley has clearly never used that road."
Farthinghoe has been frustrated by years of delays to a £30+m plan for a by-pass for the village.
Currently lorries up to 54 feet long, carrying up to 44 tonnes, are allowed on UK roads. The new semi-trailers will be six feet, nine inches longer than a standard semi-trailer and can be towed by a lorry. The weight limit remains the same.
The Government believes the large trucks are safe for use and will contribute to managing a nationwide lack of drivers. It says because they will carry more, there will be fewer lorries on the roads, reducing carbon emissions while boosting the economy.
The DfT statement said: "Longer lorries and longer semi-trailers on roads will save 70,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide from being released into the air.
"(They) will be introduced… to support the government's priority to grow the economy, boost productivity, slash road emissions and support supply chains. (They) will be able to transport fast-moving consumer goods and retail products, waste packaging, parcels and pallets.
"They will move the same volume of goods, but will use 8% fewer journeys than current trailers. This will generate an expected £1.4 billion in economic benefits and take one standard-size trailer off the road for every 12 trips.
Roads Minister Richard Holden said operators will be legally required to ensure appropriate route plans and risk assessments are made to take the unique specifications of LSTs into account. And he said the new vehicles are also expected to cause less wear on the roads than conventional lorries due to the type of steering axle used.