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Only two hauliers are using longer semis two months on from launch

  • 27 February 2012
  • By Roger Brown

Only two operators have so-far been issued with vehicle special orders (VSOs) allowing them to operate longer semi-trailers on the road.

More than two months since the announcement of its ten-year trial, the Department for Transport (DfT) tells CM Eddie Stobart has been issued with two VSOs for its SDC-built designs while Wincanton has been granted a VSO for its trailer built by Don Bur.

As part of the trial, the DfT is allowing about 170 haulage firms around the UK to operate just over 1,800 of the longer trailers.

There is a roughly equal split in allocations between the 14.6m and 15.65m options.

In January, SDC was granted approval by the Vehicle Certification Agency (VCA), an executive agency of the DfT, for five different longer semi-trailer models.

The VCA also issued approval for Don-Bur’s longer semi at 15.65m, which uses a self-steer axle. Turning circle and safety tests were carried out by the VCA at the MIRA testing grounds.

Daniel Wood, operations manager at Burnley-based Fagan and Whalley, says: “We have four trailers due of the 14.6m variety but to the best of my knowledge they are still in-build and we are yet to have a confirmed arrival date for them.”


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