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You have been warned - DVSA carrying out checks on light trailers and caravans


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Just now, Durbanite said:

IMHO the tram lines are probably a result of using inferior or cheap components for the road surface in the hope that money will be saved.

 

The tram lines came about when artic trailers changed from using two axles with twin wheels to three axles with single wheels so more weight per tyre and the tyres all follow the same line - the original UK motorways were designed at a time when the maximum weight was lower than the present 44 tonnes.

 

Roads have to be rebuilt from the bottom up so major roadworks needed to give higher limits.

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Resurfacing won't cure tramlines for long - it's the foundations that need to be deeper - diificult to close motorways for that long - many UK motorways run at several times their design capacity so a

I - I welcome the DVSA carrying out those checks. Those who abide by the rules have nothing to fear, but the others, whose trailers/caravans do not comply deserve to be put off the road.   2

I have since been told by a retired traffic cop that they have no discretion, after they receive the call over the radio they have to stop the next caravan. Statistical relevance and all that!

10 minutes ago, Durbanite said:

IMHO the tram lines are probably a result of using inferior or cheap components for the road surface in the hope that money will be saved.

IMHO the tramlines have a quadruple  cause:-

1. Designers cut the specification to the bare minimum to keep the costs down and win the contract .

2. Road builders cut corners to squeeze a little more profit.

3. Weight limits have increased.

4. Overloaded HGVs pound the hell out of it over time.

 

Once it's build it's too late to do anything about 1,2 and 3.!

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1 hour ago, Durbanite said:

IMHO the tram lines are probably a result of using inferior or cheap components for the road surface in the hope that money will be saved.

 

You are, of course, entitled to your opinion, you are however incorrect because it is NOT the surface that fails but the underlying infrastructure that becomes crushed, over an extended period, by all of the heavy goods vehicle traffic.  For 7 years after leaving the old bill I worked for the county council highways dept, so speak from a position of some personal and professional knowledge on the matter, do you? 

 

About the only surface that doesnt become tramlined is concrete, but it’s VERY noisy indeed and the expansion joints between each “slab” of surface needs to be sealed very Carefully and it also needs highly time consuming (so therefore expensive) continual maintenance. 

 

I am sure that if you could come up with a way of using better materials to make motorways so they didn’t “tramline” Highways England would be overjoyed at the potential savings and reward you handsomely for your expertise! 

 

Andy

 

Experience is an awful teacher who ends up sending you simply horrifying bills

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17 minutes ago, Mr Plodd said:

 

You are, of course, entitled to your opinion, you are however incorrect because it is NOT the surface that fails but the underlying infrastructure that becomes crushed, over an extended period, by all of the heavy goods vehicle traffic.  For 7 years after leaving the old bill I worked for the county council highways dept, so speak from a position of some personal and professional knowledge on the matter, do you? 

 

About the only surface that doesnt become tramlined is concrete, but it’s VERY noisy indeed and the expansion joints between each “slab” of surface needs to be sealed very Carefully and it also needs highly time consuming (so therefore expensive) continual maintenance. 

 

I am sure that if you could come up with a way of using better materials to make motorways so they didn’t “tramline” Highways England would be overjoyed at the potential savings and reward you handsomely for your expertise! 

 

Andy

 

I offered an opinion and used the word "probably" without contradicting you and you come in with a High Noon attack angling for a kill as if we are in a war zone.  What is wrong?  Not enough vino this morning?  Keep calm!  :D

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In my defence m’lud I would point out that I did say   “You are of course entitled to your opinion” And was merely trying to explain why you were incorrect.

 

No offence intended and I apologise if you were offended. 

 

Andy

Experience is an awful teacher who ends up sending you simply horrifying bills

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Strange how most other countries in Europe have much smoother motorways.

 

Ian

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40 minutes ago, IanV8 said:

Strange how most other countries in Europe have much smoother motorways.

 

Ian

 

It’s not every motorway in the UK that suffers tramlining so it could be down to the fact that the U.K. is very densely populated and there are not that many motorways compared to Europe? I have nothing to back that up though. Plus of course, in France, many motorways are Peage so many trucks avoid them. 

 

Andy 

Experience is an awful teacher who ends up sending you simply horrifying bills

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2 hours ago, Durbanite said:

IMHO the tram lines are probably a result of using inferior or cheap components for the road surface in the hope that money will be saved.

 

1 hour ago, Mr Plodd said:

You are, of course, entitled to your opinion, you are however incorrect because it is NOT the surface that fails but the underlying infrastructure that becomes crushed, over an extended period, by all of the heavy goods vehicle traffic.  For 7 years after leaving the old bill I worked for the county council highways dept, so speak from a position of some personal and professional knowledge on the matter, do you? 

 

52 minutes ago, Durbanite said:

I offered an opinion and used the word "probably" without contradicting you and you come in with a High Noon attack angling for a kill as if we are in a war zone.  What is wrong?  Not enough vino this morning?  Keep calm!  :D

 

Hmmm.  I tend to agree with Andy on this one. Living very close to a major trunk road between the docks and the Midlands, I know the road has to be repaired at regular intervals (causing major disruption locally as vehicles divert to avoid the works) and I believe this is because of the plethora of very heavy vehicles we see using that stretch of major road every day. Lane two stands up well to the traffic while lane one becomes rutted remarkably quickly after a repair and is problematic for anyone towing a caravan and the caravans can be seen to lurch from one rut to the other! As previously noted by another poster, this only became a problem when heavier trailers with six single wheels became the norm, over the eight wheel trailers previously used in the UK.

46 minutes ago, IanV8 said:

Strange how most other countries in Europe have much smoother motorways.

Many European motorways have a greater concrete component in the tarmac, hence their smoothness that gives less grip and the necessity for a reduced speed limit when it rains.

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55 minutes ago, Mr Plodd said:

In my defence m’lud I would point out that I did say   “You are of course entitled to your opinion” And was merely trying to explain why you were incorrect.

 

No offence intended and I apologise if you were offended. 

 

Andy

No problem.  Enjoy your day as lovely sunny day in West Midlands.  :D

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1 hour ago, IanV8 said:

Strange how most other countries in Europe have much smoother motorways.

 

Ian

I remember the first time I encountered tramlines.  It was a motorway in Belgium.  I think it would have been the 80's because I remember which caravan I was towing.  It was quite a shock till I realised what was happening. I don't think I've seen anything as bad since.  Changing lanes was very hairy.  

 

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20 hours ago, Gordon said:

 

 

 

Hmmm.  I tend to agree with Andy on this one. Living very close to a major trunk road between the docks and the Midlands, I know the road has to be repaired at regular intervals (causing major disruption locally as vehicles divert to avoid the works) and I believe this is because of the plethora of very heavy vehicles we see using that stretch of major road every day. Lane two stands up well to the traffic while lane one becomes rutted remarkably quickly after a repair and is problematic for anyone towing a caravan and the caravans can be seen to lurch from one rut to the other! As previously noted by another poster, this only became a problem when heavier trailers with six single wheels became the norm, over the eight wheel trailers previously used in the UK.

Many European motorways have a greater concrete component in the tarmac, hence their smoothness that gives less grip and the necessity for a reduced speed limit when it rains.

The above may be true, but surely the issue of HGVs using lane one should have been taken into consideration to prevent the tramlines.  It may cost more in the short term, but in the long run, probably work out cheaper as road will require less maintenance and there will be less downtime as traffic will flow smoothly. 

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17 minutes ago, Durbanite said:

The above may be true, but surely the issue of HGVs using lane one should have been taken into consideration to prevent the tramlines.  It may cost more in the short term, but in the long run, probably work out cheaper as road will require less maintenance and there will be less downtime as traffic will flow smoothly. 

 

Road builders can't be expected to second-guess future increases in vehicle weight or vehicles reducing the number of tyres - politicians won't future proof major investments like road infrastructure because the taxpayer can't afford the extra at the time.

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29 minutes ago, Black Grouse said:

 

Road builders can't be expected to second-guess future increases in vehicle weight or vehicles reducing the number of tyres - politicians won't future proof major investments like road infrastructure because the taxpayer can't afford the extra at the time.

They have been aware of the weight increase for quite a number of years so no excuse.   In 2005 the M5 had tramlines.  The road was then re-surfaced about 2 - 3 years ago but already the tram lines are starting to become evident in some areas.  This raises another question, why only in certain areas of the motorways or dual carriageways do we have these tramlines which can be a danger to drivers of cars? 

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33 minutes ago, Durbanite said:

This raises another question, why only in certain areas of the motorways or dual carriageways do we have these tramlines which can be a danger to drivers of cars? 

South facing section of road, no shading, warmer climate generally in the area (Cornwall or Scotland), more heavy vehicles on that section, or just a different surface or foundation material - take your choice  or add an idea of your own . . .  :unsure:

With the increasing adoption of the hard shoulder as a running lane on (not so) smart motorways, I fear we are set to see more surface damage from heavy vehicles in the near future.

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Unless otherwise stated, my posts will be my personal thoughts and have the same standing as any other member of Caravan Talk.

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29 minutes ago, Durbanite said:

They have been aware of the weight increase for quite a number of years so no excuse.   In 2005 the M5 had tramlines.  The road was then re-surfaced about 2 - 3 years ago but already the tram lines are starting to become evident in some areas.  This raises another question, why only in certain areas of the motorways or dual carriageways do we have these tramlines which can be a danger to drivers of cars? 

 

Resurfacing won't cure tramlines for long - it's the foundations that need to be deeper - diificult to close motorways for that long - many UK motorways run at several times their design capacity so are overloaded to start with.

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On ‎17‎/‎09‎/‎2019 at 15:50, Durbanite said:

Well it can only be good news.  Pity they do not pay more attention to those exceeding the speed limit while towing!  Can speed cameras in the UK differentiate between a car not towing and a car towing?

 

My understanding is Yes they can

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2 hours ago, StuBob said:

 

My understanding is Yes they can

 

Err sorry but they cannot!

 

What SOME can do is differentiate between a car and an HGV but they are very few and far between.

 

Andy

Experience is an awful teacher who ends up sending you simply horrifying bills

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On 20/09/2019 at 13:25, Rob Hall said:

Why would a fixed camera go off at 58mph if the normal limit was sixty ? surely you would have to do more than sixty for the camera to activate ?

 

There are some Gatso cameras that can be set up to differentiate between trucks and cars based on the strength of the reflected signal  from the larger vehicle's cross sectional area.  Perhaps this is the reason although it does need  manual reading of the image to ensure that the correct designation is applied.

 

France has already introduced a dual hi/lo camera unit to differentiate trucks from smaller vehicles.

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Concerning road surface structure - on on our regular trips through Belgium over the last 4 years we have witnessed the long overdue resurfacing of their motorways.

And not just resurfacing, they were relaid completely including a layer of reinforced steel mesh which is something I have never seen in the UK.

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On 22/09/2019 at 09:17, Black Grouse said:

 

Road builders can't be expected to second-guess future increases in vehicle weight or vehicles reducing the number of tyres - politicians won't future proof major investments like road infrastructure because the taxpayer can't afford the extra at the time.

 

Vehicle weights have not changed in a long time and vehicle/trailer wheel and tyre configurations may have changed but only to reduce the reduce the loading on the road. Most full weight trailers now run with a tri-axle set up on what are known as 'super wide singles' and tractor units have an additional 'third' axle ( which can be raised/lowered) to further reduce axle loading when running at maximum weight.  

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On 18/09/2019 at 10:08, IanV8 said:

Yes they can. My friend was done by a fixed camera for towing at 58mph on an A road where the limit was 50 for him and 60 for cars.

 

Ian

That's interesting because we've found the Dartford tunnel ANPR toll charge system does not recognise car towing caravan.

 

So we only have a car charge on the account(nice), which proves we and thousands of others were being fiddled all those year's when it was the manual system with bloke with biro in a box .

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29 minutes ago, Signature said:

That's interesting because we've found the Dartford tunnel ANPR toll charge system does not recognise car towing caravan.

 

So we only have a car charge on the account(nice), which proves we and thousands of others were being fiddled all those year's when it was the manual system with bloke with biro in a box .

The present charge doesn't differentiate between a solo car or car and trailer charge is the same (look in the T&C;s) I guess it was easier to have a more complex system of charging when they had a bloke in a box with a biro who could see what was going on. However, that said it wouldn't surprise me if they weren't trying to make it more complex so they could collect more money.

 

IMO It's still much better value than the M6 Toll road

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47 minutes ago, Signature said:

That's interesting because we've found the Dartford tunnel ANPR toll charge system does not recognise car towing caravan.

 

So we only have a car charge on the account(nice), which proves we and thousands of others were being fiddled all those year's when it was the manual system with bloke with biro in a box .

When the crossing was managed by Dartford River Crossing Ltd., under the private finance initiative,it was a toll to recoup the cost of construction. Since ownership was passed back to the Govt. (Highways England) it became a congestion charge under the Transport Act 2000. When the toll plazas were removed and replaced by automation additional charges for cars towing trailers ended. In fact, there is no separate classification for trailers at all anymore. Goods vehicles are simply classified as two axle or multi-axle.

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On 21/09/2019 at 09:55, Durbanite said:

IMHO the tram lines are probably a result of using inferior or cheap components for the road surface in the hope that money will be saved.

 Some years ago I was involved in laying a gas main in a road under construction. The road base was in place and had been consolidated, we dug a trench, laid the pipe and backfilled to our specs. Some time later, when the road had been in use for a while, we had a complaint from the council that our trench was causing problems. After excavating some inspection pits, it was determined that the road was settling at a greater rate than our trench due to insufficient compaction during construction. :o

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