VTA CEO Peter Anderson with MTAG secretary Martin Wurt in front of a Euro V truck operated by FBT Transwest.
Maribyrnong Cleaner Freight Initiative
Traditional adversaries MTAG and the VTA (Victorian Transport Association) have come together to announce a ground-breaking cleaner freight initiative for the City of Maribyrnong. The joint initiative aims to lessen the impacts of trucks on residents while providing incentives for freight operators with modern cleaner operating trucks.
The opening of the West Gate Tunnel project in 2022 will be accompanied by 24/7 truck bans on most freight routes in Maribyrnong. The Initiative is designed to help the freight industry through this transitional period by introducing gradual curfews now, certifying drivers to assist with compliance and introducing road modifications to improve safety.
A key component of the Initiative includes additional truck curfews on Buckley Street (Hyde St to Geelong Rd) and Williamstown Road (Geelong Rd to Francis St) that would finally see night and weekend curfews on all the major freight routes in the City of Maribyrnong. These curfews, along with the existing ones on Francis Street, Somerville Road and Moore Street, will reward cleaner Euro V compliant trucks and reduce access times for non compliant, older more polluting trucks. Euro V trucks will get an extra one hour of access each weekday and dirtier more polluting trucks will have their access reduced by two hours on weekdays and two hours on Saturdays.
Euro V trucks emit up to 95% less pollutants than a truck without any emissions control. Australia has one of the oldest truck fleets in the developed world at 14.9 years. It’s estimated that up to 50% of trucks in Australian cities have no pollution controls at all. Euro V trucks are also quieter, produce less carbon and particle emissions and feature advanced braking systems.
Unlike many cities and countries around the world, we have never had incentives here to modernise the trucking fleet and it’s something MTAG has been lobbying for for a long time.
The Initiative also includes stricter time restrictions for older trucks to come into place in two years time.
The Initiative includes a number of proposals that will improve safety for both truck operators and the community including a speed reduction to 50kmh on all freight routes in the City of Maribyrnong. There is also access certification for drivers that will include education about freight routes, bridges, school zones, bicycle routes and noise abatement measures.
More information can be read here:
The challenge now is to get the Initiative implemented. Roads Minister Luke Donellan has welcomed the Initiative, as has Maribyrnong Council. The Initiative is yet to be formally approved and does need State government funding to make it a reality. MTAG and the VTA will continue to advocate for it.