Long trucks in regular operation from January 2017
Six German umbrella organizations welcome the switch from the long trucks’ field trial to regular operations on a defined network as of January 1, 2017. They are the Federation of German Industries (BDI), the Federation of German Wholesale and Foreign Trade (BGA), the German federal association of international express and courier services (BIEK), the Association of German Chambers of Commerce and Industry (DIHK), the German Freight Forwarders and Logistics Operators (DSLV) and the German Association of the Automotive Industry (VDA). The amendment ordinance proposed by the Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure (BMVI) indicates the broad acceptance of this innovative vehicle concept and now finally gives the transport companies a reliable legal framework for their investments in long trucks.
The associations point to the positive experience from the field trial that has been ongoing for almost five years. The long trucks have clearly proven their economic and ecological advantages. They represent an important present-day response to the future challenges in freight transport, by helping to cope with the forecast growth in the volume of traffic on the roads and making logistics processes more sustainable.
Furthermore, long trucks contribute to climate protection. Since their cargo volume is up to 50 percent greater than that of conventional trucks, two long trucks can replace three conventional truck-trailer combinations. This reduces fuel consumption and CO2 output by up to 25 percent. It is therefore only logical that policies prescribing specific climate goals for the transport sector also permit the lower-CO2 long trucks. Despite their larger cargo volume, long trucks are not heavier than normal trucks, because the maximum permissible weight remains unchanged. Long trucks offer a high level of safety owing to the technical equipment required in them, such as proximity control and the lane keeping assistant. Moreover, they reduce wear on roads and bridges because their weight is distributed over more axles.
The amendment ordinance planned by the BMVI will allow long trucks to operate regularly on a predefined network for an unlimited period of time, starting on January 1, 2017. This will be based on the existing approved network, consisting of roads that the German states have indicated as being suitable for long trucks, at the request of logistics companies. Currently the approved network has a total length of nearly 11,600 kilometers. In the associations’ view, the German states should expand the approved road network so that the advantages of long trucks can be exploited in full. In addition, the associations are appealing for long trucks to be approved for international road freight traffic as well. While there is no clear legal basis for this in the EU, deployment of long trucks should at least be possible between those EU Member States that already allow them to operate at the national level. Regular additions/updates to the road network will support the companies’ optimization efforts and benefit from lessons learned in the future from the use of long trucks.
Contact at the Federation of German Industries (BDI)
Head of Department Mobility and Logistics
Tel.: +49 30 20281629
Contact at the Federation of German Wholesale and Foreign Trade (BGA):
Tel.: +49 30 590099-520
Contact at the German federal association of international express and courier services (BIEK):
PR and policy
Tel.: +49 30 206178-70
Contact at the Association of German Chambers of Commerce and Industry (DIHK):
Dr. Patrick Thiele
Dept. of transport policy and transport business
Tel.: +49 30 20308-2110
Contact at the German Freight Forwarders and Logistics Operators (DSLV):
Dr. Christoph Sokolowski
Head of policy and communications
Tel.: +49 30 4050228-12
Contact at the German Association of the Automotive Industry (VDA):
Head of Press Department
Tel.: +49 30 897842-120