Abu Dhabi Freight Master Plan Sets its Strategy for Safe, Fair and Efficient Freight Transport Sector

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The Department of Transport in Abu Dhabi (DoT) begins with: “Better truck maintenance”, “Check your truck”, and “Stop Sleepy Drivers” as part of the Freight Master Plan (FMP) recommendations.

The Department of Transport (DoT) in Abu Dhabi announced on Monday, its Multi-modal Freight Master Plan (FMP), an integrated framework that seeks to create safe and fair regulations supporting the economic efficiency of freight sector, whilst improving standards of truck operations. The FMP sets the DOT’s strategy of ensuring that the freight transport sector is safe, fair and efficient.

Developed in close coordination and cooperation with many government and private sector stakeholders who are directly involved in planning and providing freight transportation services in the Emirate, nationwide and beyond, the Freight Master Plan is geared towards improving safe standards for freight operations by organising its recommendations around nine themes:

  • Freight governance
  • Multi-modal policy
  • Freight planning guidance
  • Road infrastructure
  • Road freight traffic management
  • Road freight industry management
  • Rail freight
  • Sea freight
  • Air freight

The Freight Master Plan launch event, which took place on February 3-4, 2014, priortised safety as the key pillar by focusing on three well-integrated areas that help create awareness amongst key stakeholders through various tools and initiatives such as awareness documents, supporting tools, promotional campaigns and initiatives as well as direct meetings and workshops.

The first area focuses on “Better Truck Maintenance“, providing guidance to vehicle operators on how to implement an effective system for truck safety inspections and maintenance management whilst setting out requirements for daily vehicle checks with regular inspections and maintenance procedures.

The second area, ‘Check Your Truck’, provides further instruction to drivers and those responsible for pre-shift walk around truck safety inspections, detailing items to be checked and with an action roadmap if a defect is found. The guide is supported by a comprehensive checklist sheet that pays great attention to the management of truck driving hours as a very persistent issue.

The third area, ‘Stop Sleepy Drivers’, highlights the severe risks of truck driver fatigue and provides guidance to managers and company owners on how to set up an implement an effective plan to overcome this problem. It highlights some important solutions such as appropriate pre-trip or forward planning to minimise fatigue, keeping details of regular and irregular truck trips for their managers and inspectors in a well-maintained and easily accessible documentation. Besides, drivers should not be required to drive unreasonable distances in insufficient time and without sufficient notice and provision for adequate rest.

Mr. Mohammed Nasser Al Otaiba, Director of Freight Division, DoT, said: “As the issue of safety for all roads users is not one of compromise, truck incidents have negative consequences on both the life of people and the economy. The Freight Master Plan is gearing towards ensuring trucks are a safe means of goods transportation through its meticulous voluntary and obligatory guidance and regulations.”

“The DoT is committed to working closely with all stakeholders in this Plan, especially truck operators and regulators to ascertain that trucks are well maintained and regularly checked by professionals and do not pose a threat on the road and that drivers do not feel exhausted while behind the wheel. By committing to the guidance and regulations, operators and drivers can be very positive partners in road safety avoiding the costly penalties of non-compliance.” he added.