PUCHONG: The Malaysia Tipper Lorry Operator's Association has called on the government to update laws governing cargo weight limits.
Its chairman Datuk Michael Loo Leep Chye said the current capabilities of 10 and 12 tyre tipper trucks could carry more weight safely compared to the 24 tonnes and 30 tonnes they were currently permitted.
"There is a need to update these laws as most of our trucks are actually capable of carrying 30 tonnes (by 10 tyre trucks) and 45 tonnes (by 12 tyre trucks) safely.
"Currently if we follow the laws currently in place, our 10 tyre trucks will not even fill half of its bucket with nine tonnes of cargo.
"These trucks weigh around 11 and 13 tonnes without load which means if we follow the current laws our trucks can only legally carry about nine tonnes," he told reporters at the Association Headquarters on Saturday (Sept 23).
He said that many operators were at their wit's end because if they filled the lorry buckets to the brim, they would definitely be overloaded.
"There is an urgent need for us to sit down with the Transport Ministry and Works Ministry in order to find a win-win situation for all.
"We have already held various meetings and dialogues with the Road Transport Department (JPJ) and the Works Ministry but those have not come to fruition," he said adding that if current laws were enforced on permitted weight limit, each tipper lorry could only between nine and 15 tonnes only which would in turn drive up operating costs.
He said this would inevitably cause a hike in fares.
"We have been engaging with the JPJ since 2021 to find a solution but JKR dismissed our proposal to increase the weight limit based on the argument that Malaysian roads could not withstand loads over the permitted weight limit.
"The department also told us it did not have enough budget to repair roads damaged by overloaded tipper lorries," he said, adding that they were not asking for preferential treatment but merely asking to be treated fairly.
He asked how they were expected to make a living when they were not allowed to carry loads according to the actual specifications that the lorries were meant to carry.
"I can tell you now that, if our lorries load their buckets full, they would be considered overloaded," he said urging the relevant Ministries to step up and hear their plight.