Volvo Trucks has announced its support for the governments plans to increase the speed limits for goods vehicles of 7.5 tonnes on single carriageway roads from 40mph to 50mph.
Volvo Trucks MD Arne Knaben explained that the increase in the speed limit, which is due to be implemented nationally in April 2015, will potentially deliver a number of environmental and safety benefits for all road users, as well as operators and truck drivers.
“The increase from 40 to 50 mph,” said Arne Knaben, “is good news for road safety as it should help keep traffic flowing more smoothly. It will also potentially reduce the incidence of risky overtaking manoeuvres by car drivers frustrated by tailbacks that often develop behind trucks that are limited to 40mph on single carriageway roads.
”Modern trucks,” he continued, “have fast reacting disc brakes and EBS. I believe that the safety technology that is built into the latest Volvo trucks, provides a counter to the argument that the increased road speed could adversely affect safety.”
In addition to potential road safety improvements, Volvo Trucks believe that the increase from 40 (63kph) to 50mph (80kph) will result in environmental and operational benefits, including a potential reduction in fuel usage and consequently, carbon emissions.
For example, on heavy trucks, at 50mph (80kph), Volvo’s I-Shift automated gearbox will hold top gear more readily than at 40mph (63kph), benefiting economy. It will also help maximise the use of the truck’s momentum, with the result that fewer check braking applications will be needed to reduce road speed down to 40mph – thus aiding fuel economy and potentially brake component service life.