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DfT: 4m trailer heights go beyond EC's remit
Transport Minister Mike Penning has told Roadtransport.com that he wishes to assure operators and trailer manufacturers that he wants "the best outcome for the UK" following an EU proposal to standardise all new-build semi-trailer heights to 4m.
Last week it emerged that a proposal had been sent to all trailer manufacturers in the UK by the Department for Transport (DfT) providing details that the EU Commission was looking at restricting all semi-trailers built under Whole Vehicle Type Approval (WVTA) to 4m in height.
Manufacturers contacted by Roadtransport.com said that such a proposal, if it became law, would spell the end of high-roof and multi-deck trailers.
Pallet networks and operators also derided the proposal, claiming it would increase the volume of trucks on the road, carbon emissions and costs through reduced loadfill.
But Penning said he shared the concerns over the proposal: "Any such proposal seems to go beyond the Commission's remit to simplify existing legislation. We and other [EU] member states have made this point to the Commission, which now has an opportunity to reconsider.
"Let me assure manufacturers and trailer operators that the government will negotiate strongly to achieve the best outcome for the UK," he stressed.
"In the meantime, we have asked UK industry for evidence on the potential impacts of the proposal to ensure that our interests are fully represented in negotiations."