Impact assessment: High capacity vehicles.

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University of Huddersfield


In the United Kingdom (UK), the length of a goods carrying vehicle is limited to a maximum of 16.5m for a standard articulated vehicle and 18.75m for a draw-bar combination. In October 2011, the Department for Transport announced trials of extended length semi-trailers with the aim of investigating the impact of increasing the length of an articulated vehicle up to a new maximum of 18.55m, an increase of 2.05m. A number of countries in the European Union (EU) have opted to either permit or trial vehicles that are substantially longer than those currently permitted or under trial in the UK, with the extension of length often accompanied by an increase in the maximum gross weight of the vehicle. The European Commission is currently undertaking a review of the EU Directive that governs the weights and dimensions of vehicles operating in the EU. This study assesses the environmental, economic, safety and practical impacts of increasing the maximum length of vehicles in the UK to 25.25m, while maintaining the maximum gross weight at the current UK limit of 44 tonnes (with such a vehicle herein referred to as a ‘High Capacity Vehicle’ or ‘HCV’). The scope is limited to the consideration of 25.25m vehicle variants that are currently in use in the Netherlands.



Impact assessment - United Kingdom, Vehicles, High capacity - United Kingdom, High capacity vehicles - United Kingdom


Leach, D. Z., & Savage, C. J. (2012). Impact assessment: High capacity vehicles. United Kingdom: University of Huddersfield.