Trucks, buses plying Central Corridor save nearly 78%: TTFA study

Trucks, buses plying Central Corridor save nearly 78%: TTFA study

Aug 09, 2016: Trucks and buses plying along the Central Corridor save up to 78 per cent of weighbridge stoppage times, according to a directive by President John Magufuli to allow transit trucks to stop at only three instead of maximum of eight weighbridges on Tanzania side.

An analysis done by the Central Corridor Transit Transportation Facilitation Agency (TTFA) has shown that drivers now spend only 48 minutes on average at weighbridges instead of nearly four hours before President Magufuli’s instruction in April 2016.

The analysis, which was done from data collected by TTFA’s flagship project, Central Corridor Transport Observatory (CCTO) with support from Trademark East Africa (TMEA), revealed that from June 2015 to April 2016 haulers spent an average of 222.4 minutes (3.42 hours) on weighbridges between the Dar es Salaam Port and the borders between Tanzania and Rwanda, Burundi, Uganda up to Congo DR.

However, since President Magufuli’s pronouncement in April, that transit trucks and buses should only weigh at Vigwaza (Coast Region), Njuki (Singida) and Nyakahura (Shinyanga), they now spend only 48 minutes, which is 22 per cent of time they lost before.

Other weighbridges installed between Dar es Salaam and the western borders include Mikese (Morogoro), Kihonda (Morogoro), Nala (Dodoma), Mwendakulima (Shinyanga), Kyamyolwa (Kagera) and Mutukula (Kagera).

Weighbridge crossing time is calculated by subtracting arrival time of the truck or bus at the weighbridge from its departure time at the weighbridge based on Global Positioning System (GPS) survey data. “Live GPS devices are installed on the trucks when the journey starts and monitored throughout the route to capture time and delays,” say Ally Kakomile, Survey Supervisor for CCTO.

For transit trucks or buses to be able to enjoy the pleasure of stopping only at three weighbridges, they need to obtain special stickers designed by the Ministry of Works, Transport and Communications at $40 each, which is paid once.

According to the ministry’s procedures, the haulers are required to apply for the stickers to the Permanent Secretary (PS), while indicating the details of the vehicles and the transit route expected to ply. However, as of July 28th, 2016 only 254 transit trucks had obtained the stickers, which represent less than 2 per cent of the total of 13,000 transit trucks registered by government.

A representative of Tanzania Truck Owners Association (TATOA) noted that Ministry’s decision to introduce stickers which includes a cost of $40 per sticker was one of the factors discouraging transporters from acquiring the said stickers.

TATOA also said that the stickers provided only consider one route per truck/bus forgetting that some trucks could change routes (between Central and Dar es Salaam corridors) depending on the destination of the cargo. This, therefore, has created a situation where a single truck will need multiple stickers (2 or 3).

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