Govt proposes to install electronic weighing bridges at toll booths
Move aimed at discouraging overloading of trucks
These weighing bridges will be connected through satellite computers and generate data to avoid human interference and reduce corruption.
Once an overloaded truck passes through the weighing bridge it will send out an alarm, and generate a fine. However, the mechanism will allow overloading up to 10 percent.
“We plan to put these weighing machines at toll booths across India,” Union Minister of Road Transport and Highways, Nitin Gadkari said while addressing at the 54th annual convention of Society of Indian Automobiles Manufacturers (SIAM) here on friday.
This will be implemented at 360 toll plazas by December, In the second phase it will be implemented pan India, the minister said.
The move comes as a major relief to the commercial vehicle manufacturing community which has been pressing for a policy to prevent over loading in trucks.
By overloading more than the stated tonnage carrying capacity of trucks, the government loses on revenues. The illegal mining in Karnataka was facilitated by trucks that were overloaded by the mining mafia, thus paying less royalty to the government. It also increases the possibility of highway mishaps and breakdowns.
Responding to the development, Nalin Mehta, Managing Director & CEO Mahindra Truck and Bus Ltd said “This is something we have been asking for some time and it will give an impetus to truck sales. This will also be a great help in reducing pollution.”
Excess loading has been damaging highways, bridges and culverts, thus reducing their lifespan, sources said. As per Section 133 of the Motor Vehicle’s Act, overloading was prohibited by the department.
“This will help increase the sales of trucks. However, the government should also consider introducing mandatory scrapping of 15 year old trucks,” said Nitin Seth - Executive Director, LCV, Ashok Leyland
To ease traffic at the toll booth, the government will also introduce a chip system. Once a driver swipes the card at the booth the barrier will open and money will be automatically deducted.