The Freight Transport Association has reacted with disbelief to plans for widespread lorry restrictions in Gloucestershire. The proposals include introducing area-wide lorry restrictions in a number of locations and the first under consideration is the Cotswolds Area of Outstanding Natural
Beauty, which would also be subject to night-time curfews between 9pm and 5am.
The night-time ban would affect all roads in the AONB except for the A40 and A417 which are national through routes.
Stephen Kelly, FTA policy chief for the region, said: “These proposals are utterly ridiculous. One of the objectives of the county council’s latest Local Transport Plan is ‘to manage, maintain and improve the transport network to meet local transport needs more effectively for all users’. How can the proposals contained in the Lorry Management Strategy improve the transport network for those lorry operators who on a daily basis serve businesses in Gloucestershire, together with the total population which consumes the products of those lorry journeys?
“The net effect of these proposals, including the night-time ban for HGVs, will be an increase in traffic on those already heavily over-used routes not only during the daytime, but also during the night-time as more lorries are forced onto fewer roads. I wonder whether the County Council has considered the impact the additional traffic on these ‘restriction-free’ routes will have on the environment and, even more importantly, on road safety.”