Stakeholders in the haulage industry have expressed worry over the lifespan of trucks that ply Nigerian roads on a daily basis.
They stated that the trucks used on Nigerian roads were over 30 years in a webinar titled ‘Safety in the Nigerian haulage industry: Roles and responsibilities of key stakeholders’, organised by FleetTribe on Tuesday.
Supply Chain Director at Perfetti Van Melle, Rauf Badejo, said that the Nigerian haulage industry is far behind.
He said, “There is an overdependence on the road and shortage of infrastructure as the fact and figures show that 99.4 per cent of people utilise road transportation.
“If you look at the data presented, we are talking about 20-30-year old trucks. This means these are trucks that have gone beyond two to three generations in Europe or America where they are manufactured.
“It then means that here we are 30 to 40 years back in terms of technology. You will realise that while in Europe, for example, we are talking about reducing carbon emission, we cannot be talking about that here. Now, we are talking about occupant safety in this truck. The level of technology we are dealing with is archaic. In summary, there is a long distance we have to go.”
Badejo stated that this situation called for a strict policy from the government regarding the age limit of haulage vehicles on the road.
He noted that there is no incentive for the end-users to insist on a certain quality of trucks to convey their cargo because they have to look at the bottom line.
Managing Director at Aavicto Truck Services, Ayoola Ashiru, said that the issues in the haulage sector were caused by a number of human factors.
Ashiru called for government regulatory functions regarding vehicles used in the business.
He said, “We all know that Africa is a dumping ground for most of the vehicles in the western world. Do we have factories that manufacture these trucks or assemble them?
“What is the nature of the spare parts? What is the quality of tires? The government needs to have a policy on standards in terms of spare parts.”
Environment, Health & Safety Manager at British American Tobacco, David Adeoye, said firms in the industry need to review and change the vehicles they use every decade.
He said, “Your vehicle selection has to be very critical. You also have to have a vehicle refresh policy. It is not right to have vehicles that have been there for the past 20, 30 years.
“There is no equipment that does not suffer degradation over time. So you have to have a refresh policy, probably every 10 years depending on the kind of vehicle, definitely based on the manufacturer’s specification.”
He tasked stakeholders to ensure that there is a change regime for the tyres.
Also, he asked them to invest in speed limiters and a tracking system to ensure an efficient transport system.