Kalari gets green light for super B-double trial

Trucking operator Kalari gets the go ahead to run a higher productivity vehicle in regional Victoria

Kalari gets green light for super B-double trial
Kalari gets green light for truck trial
By Brad Gardner | August 23, 2010

Kalari will begin hauling a 30 metre super B-double in south west Victoria as part of a trial to reduce the number of trucks on the road.

The transport operator has been given the green light to haul mineral sands from Illuka’s mining operations in the Green Triangle using a higher productivity vehicle.

The Green Triangle encompasses Hamilton, Warrnambool, Horsham, Mount Gambier, Portland, Naracoorte, Millicent and Penola.

Kalari is the first operator to begin using the vehicle in the region since the trial began in September 2009. VicRoads Director of Vehicle Management and Safety Don Hogben says the trial will run for two years.

Capable of carrying 30 percent more freight per load, the larger trucks are seen as a solution to reducing traffic congestion and emissions while meeting the growing freight task.

"According to work done for the National Transport Commission, a reduction of 25 percent of linehaul vehicle trips is possible," Hogben says.

The decision comes at an important time, with the Government anticipating a fourfold increase in production from Illuka’s mining operations.

"In preparation for carrying these larger trucks on our road, VicRoads has completed bridge strengthening and culvert replacements on the Henty and Princes Highways," VicRoads CEO Gary Liddle says.

He says VicRoads will also finish two more bridge strengthening and replacement projects this financial year to meet the increase in vehicle loads.

"We recognise the importance of the industry to our economy and this is a significant commitment to supporting our future export needs," Liddle says.

"With freight set to double in the next 20 years, this is the first of the larger B-doubles designed to move freight more efficiently."

Vehicles taking part in the trial must go through performance based standards (PBS), which allows larger vehicles to operate in return for meeting rigorous safety standards.

They must also be monitored by the Intelligent Access Program (IAP), an in-vehicle GPS device which records a truck’s movements and reports the information to road authorities if the truck strays onto a restricted route.

Super b-doubles are also banned from using the West Gate Freeway and Western Ring Road between 6am and 9am and 4pm and 6:30pm on weekdays to reduce traffic congestion.

During the trial, Hogben says VicRoads will monitor five key areas to evaluate its effectiveness: productivity, safety, infrastructure, compliance and community acceptance.

Hogben says VicRoads will rely on information provided by operators including payload records, fuel consumption and travel times.

VicRoads will also monitor any incidents involving the larger trucks and review media coverage of the trial to gauge public support for the initiative.

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