PBS route promises benefits for Queensland operators

Queensland transport minister sells the benefits of allowing A-doubles to operate between Toowoomba and Brisbane

June 1, 2011

Queensland’s transport minister has backed the use of performance based standards (PBS) to improve freight efficiency and reduce the number of trucks on the road.

Travelling the PBS-approved route between the Port of Brisbane and Toowoomba today in an A-double, Annastacia Palaszczuk says the initiative can halve the number of trucks needed to deliver freight.

The 154km route allows vehicles up to 30 metres to travel between the port and Toowoomba. Transport and Main Roads Director-General Dave Stewart says the route assessment alone cost $280,000.

"This initiative has the potential to achieve significant freight efficient gains by reducing heavy vehicle numbers on the vital Toowoomba to Brisbane corridor," Palaszczuk says.

She says the A-double, which is capable of pulling two 40ft containers or four 20ft containers, can haul 120,000 tonnes of freight per year in 2,400 trips.

"Previously that could only be achieved with 4,800 trips over the same distances. That's a 50 percent reduction in heavy vehicle movements and a 572 tonne reduction in CO2 emissions," Palaszczuk says.

Vehicles must pass stringent safety and performance tests before gaining PBS access to the road network. Rather than focusing on the size of the vehicle, the scheme is designed to consider how the vehicle operates.

Some operators have struggled to gain PBS approval due to attempts from some governments to impose extra conditions before granting access to the road network.

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