A 7.5 tonne weight restriction remains in place on the M4 between Junctions 1 and 3 in both directions as a result of ongoing repair work at the Boston Manor Viaduct.
It is very important that drivers of vehicles of 7.5 tonnes or more comply with this restriction.
If you operate vehicles weighing 7.5 tonnes or more and use the M4 between junctions 1 and 3, please ensure your drivers follow the clearly signed diversion route using the dual carriageways of the A312 and A4. This applies to both eastbound and westbound traffic.
VOSA is working closely with the Met Police and the Highways Agency to identify and take action against road users who do not comply. This action includes the issuing of fixed penalties for vehicles not complying with the weight restriction and reporting repeat offenders to the Traffic Commissioner.
VOSA have been working with the Health & Safety Executive to improve training for roadside staff (VOSA), in terms of vehicle load security. This means that VOSA will now be using a Load Security Enforcement Matrix, to help decide if a vehicle load is secure or not. The matrix will give guidance on any enforcement action to take dependent on several factors. These factors are briefly:
These factors will be used to determine what, if any sanctions will be taken and will range from an advisory to an outright prohibition. Any prohibitions will also affect an operators OCRS score.
VOSA have stressed that operators should pay particular attention to curtain sided vehicles. Their advice is that curtain sides should not be seen as a load restraint system and additional security devices should be employed to secure the load.
Although VOSA will be looking at load security in detail, they will not routinely be looking into vehicles and trailers. They go on to say that sanctions will only be taken where there is evidence of a clear danger.
Drivers must be supplied with the correct types of load securing device to ensure that there is no danger to other road users or the public at large. This will also help to protect your operators licence and ultimately your business.