Phnom Penh Bans Large Trucks to Preserve New Roads

Municipal officials have issued a directive banning big trucks from the center of Phnom Penh in a bid to protect newly paved streets and alleviate traffic congestion, city officials said Sunday.

The ban will go into effect next week, Municipal Department of Public Works and Transport Director Nhem Saran said.

At least 60 percent of the more than 200 km of asphalt roads in Phnom Penh have been repaired in recent months, while almost 300 km of dirt roads have been repaired, Nhem Saran said. Many of the repairs to dirt roads were done in advance of the Feb 3 commune election, he said.

Larger trucks, especially those with heavy loads or pulling trailers, are damaging streets and clogging traffic, municipal officials said.

“If we allow the trucks to enter the city, our newly restored roads will be broken,” he said. Nhem Saran said truck drivers who violate the ban will be fined 500,000 riel to 1 million riel ($125 to $250).

Some trucks will be exempted from the ban, including those carrying gas, water or humanitarian aid and weighing less than 10 tons, Nhem Saran said.

Trucks with trailers and overloaded lorries must unload at warehouses on the outskirts of Phnom Penh, or have their load transferred to smaller vehicles before coming through central Phnom Penh, officials said.

Ministry of Public Works and Transport officials have used three mobile scales to weigh trucks on major roads, especially on National Routes 4, 5 and 6A, Ministry Undersecretary of State Uk Chan said. The maximum allowed weight is 25 tons, he said.

The repaving projects have included new tar laid on Nor­odom and Monivong boulevards, the two major north-south routes through Phnom Penh, as well as the highway to Pochentong Air­port, Sihanouk and Sothearos boulevards, and numerous smaller streets near major travel routes.


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