Galway drivers of heavy goods vehicles will be able to travel toll-free throughout the month of November as part of a limited trial in order to determine the impact of tolls on traffic flows.
Trucks will be able to use the M1 (Drogheda bypass ), M3 (Clonee-Kells ), M6 (Galway-Ballinasloe ) and N18 Limerick Tunnel free of charge over the coming weeks. The trial period will apply to all HGVs, whether or not they have an electronic tolling account.
The Minister for Transport Leo Varadkar has asked the National Roads Authority to facilitate the trial in order to assess the level at which HGVs are diverting due to motorway tolls.
“Many HGVs are still using regional and local roads which pass through villages, towns and rural areas, even when they have been bypassed,” said the Minister. “Granting toll-free travel to HGVs on a certain number of roads will allow us to determine the extent to which heavy traffic is diverting due to tolling points.”
He said that while motorways are built to cope with heavy vehicles many older roads are not, and there is an impact in terms of higher road maintenance, and the safety of other road users.
“There are also consequences for the public,” he said, “in terms of general nuisance and the impact on towns, villages and rural communities