Gantries to prevent overloaded heavy vehicles along Miri – Marudi road

File picture of logging trucks along the Pan Borneo Highway near Sibu en route to the sawmills.

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KUCHING: The state government will erect gantries at strategic locations along the Miri- Marudi road while upgrading and repair works are in progress, said Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Dr James Masing.

He said the gantries are to prevent heavy vehicles, such as trucks overloaded with logs and oil palm fruits, from damaging the 44km-long road while it is being upgraded and repaired.

“We have done this (putting up gantries) along the Bakun road and it has been successful in preventing heavy vehicles not to overload themselves,” he told reporters after handing over government grants to 21 non-governmental organisations, social clubs and welfare associations here.

He blamed the heavily overloaded vehicles as the main cause of the damage to the Miri-Marudi road.

Masing, who is also the Infrastructure Development and Transportation Minister, said he knows the condition of the Miri-Marudi road is bad.

“We had allocated over RM70 million to build the road for the ordinary vehicles to use, but unfortunately, it is also being used by timber and oil palm trucks,” he added.

He expressed his regret that road is frequently damaged by the heavy vehicles as soon as a subsidiary of CMS Berhad has done its repair work on the road.

Masing said it will be too costly for the government if the pavement of the road is to have several layers or thicker.

“But of course we cannot afford to have thicker road and that is why I want to put up gantries along the Miri-Marudi road and it is cheaper,” he explained.

Masing said he is confident that the people will use to passing through gantries after awhile instead of travelling on road with plenty of big potholes.

He said he will be going to inspect the road on July 7 to see its condition and how best to solve the problems as soon as possible.

He said the road will be alright if ordinary vehicles are using it, but not those monster trucks overloaded with logs and oil palm fruits. –