RICHARD TEW HEADS TO MAINLAND EUROPE TO FIND OUT HOW ITS HEAVY HAULAGE CONTRASTS WITH THE UK
Most observers would assume that our European closest neighbours carry out their abnormal load haulage activities in the same way as we do this side of the Channel. There are, however, enough differences to make it an interesting subject to examine in more detail.
One obvious difference that springs to mind for most operators would be allowable axle weights, these being for the most part lower than we allow in the UK. The subject is too complex to be dealt with in serious depth here, as axle weights vary by country, axle type and suspension, etc.
We are fortunate in the UK in that we are allowed at present up to 16.5 tonnes per axle line, whereas Germany, for example, has a general limit of 12 tonnes per axle. Holland is an interesting country from a heavy haulage viewpoint, for a number of reasons. Here, only nine tonnes is allowed for a beam axle, or 10 tonnes with a permit. A pendular axle (popular in Holland) can run at 12 tonnes per axle or up to 16 tonnes with a permit, but then only on main roads with an indivisible load.