Concerned with the spate of road traffic crashes involving haulage and other related vehicles in the country, the Federal Government through the office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha called a meeting of relevant stakeholders on haulage operators on Monday, 9th July 2018 at the Conference Hall of the SGF at Shehu Shagari Office Complex Office, Abuja.
The meeting had in attendance all critical stakeholders from private sector and government organizations including the Chairman, Senate Committee on Federal Character and Inter-governmental Affairs; Chairman, Senate Committee on Land Transportation, Chairman, House Committee on Road Safety as well as Chairman, House Committee on Federal Roads Maintenance Agency (FERMA) and the Corps Marshal of the FRSC, Dr Boboye Oyeyemi.
Other stakeholders in attendance were the representative of the Inspector General of Police, heads of various transport related agencies, transport unions and petroleum industry. After the opening address by the SGF, presentation by the Corps Marshal and goodwill messages from members of the National Assembly present as well as inputs by various stakeholders, a plan of action capable of addressing the menace and binding on all members was adopted.
Consequently, the Forum resolved that mandatory certification of all haulage vehicles be carried out twice in twelve calendar months, while importation of haulage vehicles exceeding ten years from date of manufacture would be stopped with effect from 1st January, 2020. It further resolved that standard speed limiters should be installed on all haulage vehicles in Nigeria, while Trailers without safety valves and the required number plates would henceforth be disallowed from loading.
“The Safe-To- Load programme would continue to be enforced by relevant agencies at all loading points and Department of Petroleum (DPR), FRSC and other relevant agencies should immediately harmonize operating safety requirements at all Tank Farms,” the Forum resolved. In the same vein, it resolved that periodic checks of haulage vehicles should be carried out at all relevant loading points, while payment of National Transportation Allowances (NTA) and bridging claims to tanker operators would henceforth be contingent on compliance to minimum safety standards.
The Forum also resolved that single operators of haulage vehicles must be duly registered with National Association of Road Transport Owners (NARTO and should comply with the provisions of Road Transport Safety Standardization Scheme (RTSSS).
On FRSC, it resolved that the Corps should establish appropriate command and control centers to monitor and ensure safety on the highways, adding that continuous public enlightenment with other relevant stakeholders should be conducted at all loading points of haulage vehicles and their Rest Areas. “Federal Highways (Control of Dimensions, Weights and Axle Load of Heavy Duty Goods Transport Vehicles) Regulations, 2018 will be enforced,” the Forum further resolved.
In addition, the Forum adopted the resolution that Government will work closely with the Bank of Industry and other financial institutions towards the establishment of a Fleet Acquisition Renewal Scheme for haulage operators and that haulage vehicle conveying hazardous materials must be clearly labeled in conformity with the Highway Code.
Finally, the Forum endorsed the convocation of bi-annual meetings in order to sustain government engagement with stakeholders to exchange ideas and share information for the sustenance of safer road management in the country.