Home » 3PL/4PL » Truckers call for deferment of anti-overloading law

TRUCKERS and shippers are seeking deferment of the adoption of Republic Act 8794 or the Anti-Overloading Law, saying it will further aggravate congestion at Manila ports.

Mary Zapata, who represented Aduana Business Club in a dialogue with the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) late last week, said the dry run conducted by the DPWH since Wednesday exacerbated the jam at the South Harbor and at the Manila International Container Terminal (MICT).

"If before, all cargoes can be carried in one container van, now they would have to be divided into two or three container vans," Zapata, who owns Well Cargo Trucking, told reporters.

"We (truckers) are not against the measure but the government should look at every angle before implementing the anti-overloading law," she said.

"(The law’s implementation) will congest the ports considering almost all cargoes coming in are really over the allowed limit."

Statistics bear out Zapanta’s claim. Since the start of the dry run, DPWH discovered that more than 50% of trucks coming out of South Harbor, MICT and the North Harbor carried almost double the allowed weight under RA 8794.

Most violators serviced North Harbor, where 39 of 40 containers weighed in the first two days of the dry run were over the limit.

"Even with a 5% weight tolerance, most trucks are really overweight," Public Works undersecretary Raul Asis said. "This only justifies the claim that more than 50% of the trucks carrying imported cargoes are overloaded."

Transport holiday threat

The Alliance of Concerned Truckers and Other Operators (ACTOO) said it will likely stage a transport holiday if DPWH pushed through with the application of the law by February 1.

"We are against the implementation of the law as we are the ones being apprehended and not the cargo owners," Abe Mendoza of ACTOO said.

"DPWH should talk to importers and exporters about the weight limitations so that every container we carry will comply with requirements of the law," he explained.

"If they force the implementation of the law by February 1, we will close the port by not operating."

By February 1, DPWH along with the Land Transportation Office and the Philippine National Police will implement the anti-overloading law. Under the measure, those exceeding the maximum allowable gross vehicle weight (GVW) will pay a penalty amounting to 25% of the motor vehicle user charge applicable on the apprehended vehicle. The vehicle will also not be allowed to proceed on the roadway if its axle load exceeds the 13.5-ton limit or if the vehicle load exceeds 150% of the maximum allowable GVW.

South Harbor and MICT have been experiencing congestion since August last year, with too many empty containers sitting at both ports. This has caused berthing problems for shipping lines – which have no pace to dump their cargoes — as well as massive traffic jams around the port area due to trucks waiting to load and offload their cargoes.

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