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11 SEPTEMBER 1969 voL 131 No 383e

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PETER GABNIER LEOTARD AYTOITI STUANT BLADOfl GEOFFnEY P. HOWAf,O, Tscltngl ACGt IAIilES IRELAIID LIONEL BURBELL ilANTITI LEW!s

EdIto'ITI WANREN ALLPORT

MABTIN OWESS MICHAEL SCARL€TT DAVID THOMAS

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EOWARO EVES HABOLD HOLT. AMIML AMAET BONALO BARKER BOGER HUNTINGTQN, ASAE (Datmitl EOIN YOUNG /Spod,, t{. il. PntAuLx, Maf, UAUNICE A, $llITH, OFC

MAIN FEATURES

FOGI.AMPS ON TEST

MERCEDES: NEW Clll AND VEE-8S

ITALTAN GRATD PBIX REPORT

ATPINE RALLY

PRESCOTT HILL CLIMB

AUTOTEST:OPELGT

SOII'IE NEW CARAVANS

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ADVANCE NEWS FROM THE FRATTXFURT SHOT'V 46 IMPROVED CAR TEST: RADBOURIUE FIAT 50

REGUI.AR ITEMS t{Ews AND VrEWS DTSCO II N ECTED JOTTI lrtcS THE SPORT STRAIGHT FROM THE GRID ilEW PRODUCTS FROM WHAT I GATHER LOOK OUT IN PFACTICALTERMS TRADE AND INDUSTRY COBRESPOTDENCE TTEW CAB PRICES laet pages before back covtr

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TUEXT WEEK'S ISSUE FEATURES 56 Covet pholograqh: Petet Cramer

Publishsd by lLlFfE TFANSPORT PUBLICATTONS LTO., OoMt tlouse. Sl.mtond StGtt, London S,E.l. lTolophone: 01 928 3333, lalegftns: fartx: Arl@ar ltitlepE.26137 L@doh). BSANCH oFFICES: Covonlry. 8'10 Corponlion StEel /Icy'tpl,"ao; Cmilry 25210): Birmiogham. 401 Lynlon Hous, Walsall FoaA, Bifilngham, 22b {Talaphotu; A2l Birchfi6ld 48381, lfobx: ll\tloptos, Birminghsm 338680). Manch€s|gr' Stothsm H@s Talbot Ro.d. Strettord, Manchsstor M32 OFE. lTeld,hoho: 061-872 421 t). Glstg@, 2'3 clairmont Gs'd€n8. Gl.sgow c.3. lfelopbone:041'332 3792r 041-322 6006l' Bddol. 11 Elmdrle R@d. Bristol Iffebphohe: Bristol2149,"2,/31.Sub$cripliof,rslesrHm! 1yot, f8 1 5si Ovor*a.. I yoar e8 1 5s, 3 yaa6 f22 5s: USA .fid Cansd!, I v6tr $22, 3 vead $55. Chargc ot oddtoss---elease noto rhrt lwr wookg 6i@ is roquirad togdhor with tha roturn o, a wrappor boanng lho old addros. Begialood at lho Gomr6l PGt Ol6a rs o Nowsprp.r. Socond cls$s prlvil€gos sulhori.ad a! N.w Ydk, N.Y, 0 IPC 86im$ PB$ Ltd. 1960. Pormissr@ to @produc6 illusrraions and lolterpros inlhisj@mrlcanbagrodadonlY undor writton a0r66monl. griof ertrocl6 o. commems may bo m!d! with duo ackoosl6dgcm6nt.

MOBE FRUSTRATIONS? i, t OT LONG AGO we wound our way down to West l\ Cornwall, becoming involved-as is the custom along the 120-odd miles of country lanes beyond Exeter-with frustrating 2O mph queues waiting to overtake some crawling, overladen lorry. There were. inevitably, examples of appallingly bad driving when, with patience exhausted, somebody would grab a perilous few yards of "straight" to try to overtake. Perhaps even worse were the sanctimonious ones, who, with a " Look at that lunatic trying to overtake here", would promptly close the gap and not let him in again, or angrily make way with much headlampflashing and horn-blasting.

How many thousands of ordinary motorists, we pondered. is it rsasonable to delay or otherwise inconvenience forthe dake of a single load? And how many accidents does it need before it becomes the custom, as in certain provinces of Canada, for a slow-moving load, on picking up a "tail" of more than half-a-dozen, to pull in and let them by?

Now we read in our associated journal Motor Transport that the Ministry are to prosecute only substantial overloads. "Provided operators can demonstrate to enforcement officers that they have taken every reasonable caution to comply with the legal weight limit. it is unlikely that prosecution would follow other than serious overload. ln practice, marginal overloads are rarely if ever taken to court". This assurance was given by the Ministry to the Home-Grown Cereals Authority in reply to a request for a 1O per cent tolerance on the plated weights of vehicles, in view of the shortage of weighbridges.

This, then, presumably applies to other operators too' And are we to take it that vehicles will now be loaded up to the tolerance, instead of to the plated limits-bringing further hold-ups as crawling, smoking and overloaded they drop to a walking pace on hills, cause frustrating hold-ups on twisting roads. and take half-a-mile or more when one, with a speed advantage of maybe only 5 mph, sets out to overtake another?

How much more reasonable it would be if steps were taken to speed-up these monsters with which we share the roads until, perhaps, one day we have the sort of roadsthey require? We would like to see speedy, efficient transport of goods; and with it the speedy, efficient use of all forms of road transport including private cars. ls this too much to expect, in return for the t1,564,000'0O0 we contributed towards the national income last year?

lf the provision of weighbridges is going to overcome the problem of overloading, so that a clear-cut plating limit can be imposed (and one that will not overtax the pefformance or the brakes of the "heavies"),then why not provide them? Under the Road Safety Act. 1967, the Minister has the power to do so.