Trucks up to 25.25 metres in length and weighing up to 60 tonnes are permitted in domestic traffic in Sweden. This deviates from the EU standard, according to which trucks are not to be longer than 18.75 metres or weigh more than 40 tonnes.
The Ministry of Enterprise, Energy and Communications has commissioned VTI to study what economic consequences this deviation has had for Sweden and to describe the competition interface between road and rail transport. The effects on transport costs for business, exhaust and noise emissions, road wear,
time delay for motorists and road safety have been estimated.
An analysis compares the situation in Sweden, where it is possible to use longer/heavier vehicles than in the rest ofthe ED, with a hypothetical situation in which ED rules are introduced in Sweden. The volume transported is assumed to be constant. Two scenarios have been studied, Scenario B, where no transfer to rail is possible, and
Scenario C, where transfer is possible.
The result is that it is not cost-effective to use shorter and lighter trucks. The loss is estimated to be greater in Scenario B (around SEK -8.9 billion) than in Scenario C (around SEK -3.9 billion). The dominant effect is increased transport costs.
The investments in load-bearing capacity which the National Road Administration began in 1988 to adapt the standard ofthe roads to the demands of heavy vehicles are expected altogether to cost SEK 46 billion. This cost is recouped by society after just over five years in Scenario B and after just under twelve years in Scenario C.
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