UOTC speaks up for continued weight allowance differential of Combined Transport 27/02/23

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Source: https://elmercantil.com/2023/02/27/transportistas-y-cargadores-reclaman-mantener-el-diferencial-de-masa-en-los-recorridos-intermodales/


Carriers and shippers defend adapting the mass differential in intermodal service

This measure would allow intermodal transport to also benefit from a greater mass before the arrival of 44 tons on the road

February 27, 2023

The main associations of road transporters and shippers have shown their support for maintaining the current differential of Maximum Authorized Mass (MMA) in road transport vehicles that carry out first or last mile routes related to intermodal transport before the foreseeable entry in force of the 44 tons . The president of the Union of Comodal Transport Operators (UOTC), Antonio Pérez Millán, recalled that, for this type of transport, "42 tons are authorized in the 2+3 axle sets and 44 tons in the 3+3 axle sets Therefore, the MMA differential is two and four tons, respectively”.

Transport associations point out that this measure serves to promote intermodality

In this way, CETM Multimodal and UOTC have indicated in a joint statement, "it would allow a maximum weight of 46 tons to be reached in an articulated set of 2+3 axles and of 48 tons in one of 3+3 axles". Both organizations have highlighted that this increase in maximum weight "is aimed at promoting intermodality and compensating for the higher tare weight that equipment dedicated to this type of transport bears compared to road transport vehicles". They have also stressed that these higher maximum masses "will only apply to intermodal traffic and in duly authorized units."

"In addition", they have added, "this modification will only be allowed in the event that the 150 kilometers from or to the terminal and the place of loading or unloading of the corresponding intermodal transport unit (uti) are not exceeded or there is no connection viable maritime or rail within a radius less than this distance”. For this reason, they have requested the competent authorities, the Ministry of Transport, Mobility and Urban Agenda and the General Directorate of Traffic (DGT), to maintain this differential "in order to promote intermodality and compensate for the greater tare that the equipment supports dedicated to this type of transport”.

"There will be a loss of activity if it increases to 44 tons without maintaining the differential"
Antonio Pérez Millán President of the Union of Comodal Transport Operators (UOTC)

"These vehicles will have a great loss of activity in the event that the limit of masses and dimensions is modified and the maximum weight allowed is increased to 44 tons, in general, without maintaining the MMA differential for multimodal," Pérez predicted. Millan. In this sense, he has pointed out that this is "especially worrisome in the cases of chemical products and dangerous goods, which could once again be transported by road instead of intermodal". In addition, according to the president of UOTC, "it would hinder the development of multimodality, which goes against all the environmental and sustainability measures that today's society requires."

"For intermodal transport and for the road related to it, it would be a real disaster, just at a time when it is intended to promote intermodality", added Antonio Pérez Millán. The president of the UOTC has highlighted that for road transport, in general, “not maintaining the current differential of two or four tons in favor of intermodality would not mean any progress. If it is taken into account that the market share of intermodality in Spain is between 2% and 4%, depending on how it is estimated, its impact on the majority mode is minimal”.

The director of the Consell d'Usuaris del Transport de Catalunya, Rosa Prenafeta, has agreed with maintaining the differential at 44 tons "because the transport of a container or swap body increases the vehicle's tare weight in those two or four tons and reduces the load capacity”. Prenafeta has qualified that they should be adapted "only to those trucks approved to carry those weights, which coincide with the most modern ones", and has stressed that in "other European countries they have already increased it and, when border crossing is allowed, we will be in competitive disadvantage. We must think that these are relatively short journeys to the port or the railway terminal”.

"In other countries it has already increased and we will be at a disadvantage"
Rosa Prenafeta Director of the Consell d'Usuaris del Transport de Catalunya

Rosa Prenafeta has indicated that "we should not panic because not all road transport is for heavy goods, but the sectors that sell them have their sales standards based on the maximum authorized mass". The fact "of not increasing the weight in intermodal would imply that the product needed to complete a truck would be more than one import container, with which efficiency would be lost and emissions would increase", explained the director of the Consell d' Users of Transport de Catalunya.

"The increase in the maximum mass differential has no influence on the railway quota"
Nuria Lacaci General Secretary of the Spanish Chargers Association (ACE)

The general secretary of the Association of Chargers of Spain (ACE), Nuria Lacaci, has also agreed, "although the increase in the differential has no influence on the rail quota, which is not related to the maximum mass of vehicles , but with flexibility, punctuality and the offer of service”. In fact, she has continued, "it is a mistake to think that the increase to 44 tons is going to make the railway lose competitiveness compared to the road." Lacaci has stated that ACE shippers "for reasons of sustainability, have been betting on rail intermodality for some time and will continue to do so regardless of this measure."

The general secretary of Transprime, Jordi Espín, has also been in favor of maintaining the differential. “Everything results in an increase in competitiveness that comes to benefit transport in general and without cracks”, he indicated. Espín stressed that it is "important to eliminate fears of competition between media, even more so today where co-modality plays a fundamental role in integrating all efficiencies in the same direction: load concentration and limiting the environmental footprint."