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Road freight transport

The reform of weights and dimensions in freight transport

The Directorate General of Traffic (DGT) has already begun processing the regulation that will increase the masses and dimensions permitted in the transport of goods. In relation to this, on Wednesday 22 May, the Ministry of the Interior published the draft order that will modify the General Vehicle Regulations to include this increase in masses and dimensions.

The draft mainly establishes three novelties in the current legislation:

  • It increases the areas in which 44 tonnes can be used as the Maximum Authorised Mass (MMA) in the transport of goods by road by means of a progressive timetable.
  • Extends the maximum permitted height to 4.5 metres for certain types of transport: transport of straw, live animals and the supply of suppliers to industries over distances of less than 50 kilometres.
  • It simplifies the use of Euro-modular vehicles up to 32 metres and 72 tonnes and duotrailers. The latter had already been made possible by the DGT in December through an instruction.

With this project, which will be subject to public consultation on 13 June 2024, through the website of the Ministry of the Interior, it is expected to reduce pollutant emissions in the sector.

This is a measure that is already being applied in 12 member countries, including all those bordering Spain, and is in line with the reform of the European Directive on Weights and Dimensions approved by the European Parliament last March, which will be analysed in the next European Council legislature.

Despite Spain’s approval of its masses and dimensions regulations, the sector is looking to Europe. We are facing an accelerated calendar, the European elections are approaching, which will be held this June, and at that time it is foreseeable that a decision will be taken on whether to continue with what has been voted or to start from scratch with regard to the European mass and dimensions regulations, as the member of the executive committee of the presidency of the International Road Transport (IRU) explained. In this context, it has been assured that everyone would have liked more uniformity in these regulations and, even if we were allowed to cross borders with more tonnage, the states with a common border should be in agreement.

On the other hand, it is worth mentioning that AECOC, the main association of transport user companies from different professional sectors (food and beverages, drugstore and perfumery, hardware and DIY, consumer technology goods, textiles, etc.), welcomes the fact that the amendment of the General Vehicle Regulations has been submitted for public hearing and information, as this will make it possible to increase efficiency in road freight transport operations and make companies more competitive, as well as mitigate some of the problems of the transport sector. ), welcomes the fact that the amendment of the General Vehicle Regulations has been put out to public hearing and information, as this will make road freight transport operations more efficient and make companies more competitive, as well as mitigating some of the main problems faced by the sector, such as the lack of drivers and decarbonisation.