Drivers of overheight vehicles to be targeted by RTA campaign

By: Michael House

The NSW Government is cracking down on over-height vehicles which are causing damage to Sydney's motorway tunnels

February 19, 2010

Overheight vehicles will be targeted in a new campaign by the New South Wales Government in an effort to curb pressure on roads and bridges and promote road safety.

Acting Minister for Transport David Borger says last year more than 1,100 vehicles were identified as being over-height on approach to Sydney’s motorway tunnels.

He says despite some drastic measures currently in place, such vehicles still continued on their journey causing significant damage to the roofs of various tunnels.

"All heavy vehicle drivers must remember their vehicles can have a huge impact on other drivers, as well as the condition of bridges, tunnels and roads," Borger says.

"When a vehicle gets stuck in a tunnel it causes delays and disruptions for other motorists and can significantly affect traffic flow."

Borger says the new campaign is about educating drivers to divert to another route before entering the tunnels if their vehicles are too high.

"This is about educating all heavy vehicle drivers to be responsible and aware of the consequences of ignoring the height restrictions," he says.

"The Roads Traffic Authority (RTA) will write to all registered heavy vehicle operators in the state with information about tunnel restrictions so drivers can properly plan routes."

Borger points out drivers who fail to comply with overheight laws face stiff penalties.

"Under Chain of responsibility laws, the maximum penalty for a severe breach is $55,000," he says.

"Drivers may also be liable for any damage they cause to the tunnel as a result of their actions."

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