Sand trucks traversing the Linden/Soesdyke Highway have been flagged as major offenders of axle overload, according to a survey which is part of the feasibility and design studies of the rehabilitation of the 45-mile long two-lane road.
With the assistance of the Guyana Police Force, a team stopped the trucks traversing the highway, Stuart Hughes, Project Director informed the Region Ten Democratic Council.
“We directed them unto these weigh pads. And the weigh pads basically wirelessly measured the weight of these axles and transmitted it to the laptop. So we were able to get the actual load of each and every axle for each and every one of these trucks which we stopped at these two locations,” he noted.
While the standard limit is 8.2 tonnes, most trucks weighed were well overweight, the highest – a sand truck – weighing 19 tonnes.
The heaviest logging truck was recorded at 16 tonnes.
“Going into the Roads Act Chapter 51:02, the Regulation which I found… the actual legal limit as it stands is 7.2 tonnes… basically for every tonne that is actually heavier than the design limit,” Hughes said.
These revelations, he said, will greatly impact the feasibility of the rehabilitation of the highway.
“The damage that’s being done… A 16-tonne truck would be doing 22 times the actual damage. Nineteen tonnes you’re up to thirty something times the actual damage. So, we can design for this, but the question is we’ll end up with a very, very expensive pavement… It would be a very, very expensive undertaking,” he noted.
Hughes said the decision would be up the government, through the Ministry of Public Infrastructure. He said with the company submits its pavement design report, it would have to seek guidance from the Ministry as to whether it should go ahead to design based on the findings, or whether the government intends to put in place a much more active weight limit enforcement programme on the roadway.
The survey was conducted by a design and consultancy team attached to Beston/SRKN’gineering, which has been contracted by the Public Infrastructure Ministry to conduct feasibility studies and detailed designs for the major rehabilitation of the highway.
A team attached to the Public Infrastructure Ministry recently visited the office of the Region 10 (Upper Demerara-Berbice) Regional Democratic Council (RDC) along with a design team where various aspects of the project were presented to Regional Chairman Renis Morian and Councillors.