Act against trucks with excess load: Transport dept told

Upalokayukta suggests computerised weighing bridge lanes at toll gates on highways

Act against trucks with excess load:  Transport dept told

Upalokayukta Justice Subhash B Adi has directed the Transport Department to take stringent measures to check overloading of trucks plying on highways in the State.

The Upalokayukta has suggested the department to develop computerised weighing bridge lanes at toll gates on the highways.

The Transport Department has levied penalty of Rs 26 lakh on overloading trucks in a special drive conducted in November. The Upalokayukta has also recommended action against consigner, consignee and transporter for overloading.

The Upalokayukta has suggested three measures to check overloading of lorrys on the highways. “I have suggested computerisation of toll plazas to record data. A separate lane may be set up at the toll gate to record the details about laden, unladen and excess weight. The recording of weight, collection of penalty can take place without intervention of a third party.

Same data should also be made available on the central server of the Transport Department to enable transparency and accuracy without any room for pilferage. This also gives details of vehicular movement on the respective highways. I have suggested the Transport Department to hold talks with the National Highways Authority and place a system in place,” Justice Adi said.  

In other recommendations, Upalokayukta has asked the Transport Department to fix the responsibility not only on the transport operator, but also the consigner and consignee so as to avoid overloading at the source itself.

The Transport Department has also been asked to take steps to prosecute consigner, consignee and the transporter under relevant provisions of law, including Prevention of Damage to Public Property Act 1984.

The Federation of Karnataka Lorry owners’ Association had filed a complaint with the Upalokayukta stating that overloading of trucks has become rampant in the State. The complaint alleged that because of this unfair trade practice, road safety and road quality has been affected. The association stated that the Transport Department has not taken any action despite filing complaints. Subsequently, a special drive was taken up by the Transport Department to check the cases of overloading.

As per the directions issued by the Upalokayukta, RTOs and Motor Vehicle Inspectors conducted inspection between November 1 and 30. As many as 51,022 lorries were checked at toll plazas on highways and 58,968 lorries were inspected at other places.

During the drive, 273 cases were registered against violators under the provisions of Motor Vehicle Act. While 140 trucks were seized, 255 trucks carrying excess load were off loaded and a penalty of Rs 26.81 lakh was collected.

“The association alleged that Transport Department officials collude with some truck operators and allow overloading. In a matter pertaining to the road safety before the Supreme Court, a committee was formed and it submitted the report.

One of the requirements is to take action against the transport operators in cases of overloading as it will have the bearing on road safety. The committee recommended that a check and vigil should be kept at the source to prevent the problem,” Justice Adi said.

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