Limits and routing for heavy goods vehicles (HGVs)

Warwickshire has a number of distribution centres, manufacturing and industrial estates which are serviced by Heavy Goods Vehicles (HGVs). HGVs are therefore prevalent on the county’s road network which results in a number of concerns being raised by local residents.

Due to significant changes across Warwickshire in recent years the Advisory Lorry Route Map is no longer representative of the current road network and has therefore been withdrawn.

Drivers and those responsible for running those services which require the transport of goods and services using HGVs should always use and provide routes that use the most appropriate strategic roads and primary roads in the first instance. Drivers should avoid using other A and B roads and roads of a lower classification until absolutely necessary for access purposes and where possible avoid environmentally sensitive areas. Warwickshire County Council also advocates the use of regularly updated, HGV specific satellite navigation systems. For further advice regarding routing please use the contact details provided.

If your query is regarding current height, weight and width restriction information on bridges please use the online report system.

Who enforces existing weight restrictions?

Warwickshire Police and Trading Standards can enforce weight restriction orders under the Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984. However, environmental weight restrictions are particularly difficult to enforce due to the exemption they carry for vehicles requiring legitimate access, for example, to deliver goods. Each vehicle must be stopped to check for this (but only the police can stop a vehicle).

Requests for police enforcement or the reporting of any concerns can be made via your local community forum . For more information about Trading Standards, please see here .

What can be done to prevent HGV’s from using our road?

It is difficult to restrict the movement of HGV’s as they are permitted to use any classification of road for access and deliveries even if there is a weight restriction in place (unless it is a structural weight limit). As a main through route, HGV’s are directed to use the most appropriate route via motorways, dual carriageways and main roads.

We have produced a lorry map which has been distributed to haulage companies and relevant associations. The map shows the most suitable routes around Warwickshire, the main industrial areas, refuelling stops, parking areas and services stations, all of which are suitable for heavy goods.

HGV routes are currently under review. We are not considering the introduction of additional weight limits at the present time.

However if particular haulage companies can be identified, who continually use unsuitable roads as a through route when other, more appropriate, main routes are available we will attempt to contact them where resource allows. Please note that we can only advise companies and do not have enforcement powers.

Can we prevent HGV’s from using our road?

No, lorries are permitted to use any classification of road for access and deliveries. Only in exceptional traffic management circumstances can we consider the use of a weight limit Traffic Regulation Order (TRO) to reduce the movement of HGVs via structural restrictions (for example, a weak bridge) and environmental restrictions. The cost of introducing a TRO is in excess of £6000. There is no existing council funding available to introduce any new weight limits, therefore external funding would need to be identified by the requesting party.

Can we have a sign advising our road is not suitable for HGV’s

Advisory signs will not be considered for use on A and B class roads. Signs will only be considered on other roads if a survey shows that more than 10 per cent of vehicles using the road are HGV’s, without legitimate access. There is currently no existing council funding available to carry out a survey or install new signs on the road, and therefore external funding would need to be identified by the requesting party.

What is the process for requesting an advisory sign?

  1. A formal request would need to be made through the relevant authority, via your town/parish council or community forum. This authority would then need to agree to fund the sign themselves or find external funding.
  2. Signs will only be considered on other roads if a survey shows that more than 10 per cent of vehicles using the road are HGV’s. The cost of this survey is dependent on the area and road environment, and therefore costs can vary, but are usually within the range of £180 – £427, to which would be added the appropriate value of VAT. We will work with you on the location of where the survey should be undertaken and the expected survey cost. If the survey shows that more than 10 per cent of vehicles using the road are HGVs, then a warning sign can be considered. If less than 10 per cent of vehicles are HGVs, then no further investigation work will be carried out.
  3. If the figures support the need for an advisory sign then the relevant requesting authority would need to make a non-refundable payment of £500 to commission the investigation work required, for example, initial assessment of the site, design, utility and environmental searches.
  4. A summary of findings will then be submitted to the requesting authority, advising if it is possible to install a sign and if so, what the total cost of installation would be.

Abnormal loads approval

We are working in conjunction with Warwickshire Police to monitor or approve all abnormal load movements on the county’s highways, and verify the suitability of a chosen route.

The regulations regarding the movement of abnormal loads is contained in the Statutory Instrument 2003 No. 1998 – The Road Vehicles (Authorisation of Special Types) (General) Order 2003.

The appropriate authority (either ourselves or Warwickshire Police) must be notified before any move is scheduled to take place. The haulier must also indemnify the authority for each move.

Notifications may be made via the electronic service delivery for abnormal loads – the nationwide database for abnormal loads.