TRUCKERS FURIOUS OVER PROHIBITED ON SUGARCANE OVERLOADS
Operators of trucks used to cart sugarcane blocked roads in Nakhon Sawan and Uttaradit provinces on Monday night in protest against a police crackdown on overloaded vehicles using the highways.
At least 50 trucks used to carry sugarcane to factories were parked on the Kao Lieo-Banphot Phisai Road, a main road in Nakhon Sawan, according to Thai media reports.
The action came after the police began stringent enforcement of the law against overloaded sugarcane trucks. Mobile police teams were deployed on the highways to intercept overloaded trucks and take legal action against the drivers, the reports said.
In Uttaradit, sugarcane trucks began blocking the Uttaradit-Phitsanulok Road, also known as Highway 11.
Trucks are prohibited from piling up sugarcane to more than 3.6 meters in height and to exceeding the maximum weight of 25 tonnes. Operators say it is impractical for them to strictly stay within the limits. To do so would increase the cost of taking the cane to factories, requiring extra fuel and having to hire extra workers.
Reducing the size of their loads would also delay deliveries to the factories, disrupting the production schedules.
Authorities hurried to the scene to begin negotiations with the drivers, the reports said. Talks began in Uttaradit about 2am and after two hours there was no agreement, the reports said.
The drivers finally agreed to unblock the road, after Uttaradit governor Sathianphong Maksiri arrived and promised he would call an urgent meeting later in the day to explore ways out of the conflict between the truck drivers and police. Source: Bangkok Post