|A 16-seat car on Wednesday hit a mobile scale in the northern mountainous province of Ha Giang when being pulled over for weighing by the traffic police. — VNA/VNS Photo
HA NOI (VNS)— Transport Minister Dinh La Thang has reiterated the need for strict checks to prevent overloading of trucks and threatened severe punishment for any ministry staff found receiving bribes.
His comments came at a meeting held on Thursday to review the performance of the Directorate for Roads of Viet Nam in an inspection drive launched earlier this month on load-carrying vehicles.
"Transport companies that follow the rule on trucks' carrying capacity will not be able to compete with those who violate the rule and carry more load than allowed," he said.
Therefore, checking the weight of trucks is a way to level the field, he added.
Thang said that the ministry will mete out tough punishments for wrongdoings.
"I promise to hand out serious punishment if the information on the ministry's staff receiving bribery is correct," he said.
Yet another adverse impact was highlighted by Bui Danh Tu, deputy director of Yen Bai Department of Transport, who said that the Highway 70 section running through his province had degraded seriously because of overloaded trucks.
Do Xuan Hoa, General Secretary of Viet Nam Automobiles Transport Association, said that there are many trucks that transport up to 100 tonnes of construction material although they are only allowed to carry 22 tonnes.
"We strongly support the Government in taking aggressive measures so that road transportation can be improved," he said.
He also noted that consumers would be affected when trucks are forced to follow the rules on load carrying because prices of goods would increase.
"But, if we don't control seriously overloaded trucks, the roads will be damaged and it is people's tax money that is used to repair and rebuild them," Hoa said.
Khuat Viet Hung, head of the ministry's Transport Department, informed the meeting that in 15 days, some 11,000 trucks were checked and 2,100 found carrying excessive loads. — VNS