Research Report, Policy Insights,
18 April 2011
- The freight transport task is growing rapidly in most regions and requires effective utilisation of all modes of transport.
- The safety and environmental impacts of road haulage require regulatory intervention for optimal outcomes.
- Compliance can be improved greatly through legislation that assigns responsibility.
- Compliance regimes can be enhanced by exploiting technological innovations.
- A performance based approach to regulation offers the potential to meet community objectives for road freight transport more fully.
- Many higher capacity vehicles have equivalent or even better intrinsic safety characteristics in some respects than most common workhorse trucks.
- Truck crash energies mean safety regulation must pay particular attention to managing truck speeds and driver alertness and impairment.
- Higher capacity vehicles have potential to improve fuel efficiency and reduce emissions.
- Higher capacity vehicles can result in fewer vehicle-kilometres travelled.
- The lower unit costs offered by higher productivity trucks could result in increased overall demand for road freight transport and a transfer of freight from other modes.
- Road pricing systems can be developed to manage use of the transport network more efficiently.
- Road infrastructure and trucks need to be developed in concert.
- Significant opportunities for improvement of the regulation of heavy trucks have been identified.