Release Date: 01 July 2008
Release ID: 1334
The IRU warns that the new Directive on inland transport of dangerous goods will harm industry and Europe's competitiveness.
The International Road Transport Union strongly opposes the imposition of a prescribed transport mode over another, as stipulated by the Directive adopted by the European Parliament and the Council on the inland transport of dangerous goods, as it will only increase uncontrollable risks while shipping dangerous goods, and prompt the EUís chemical industry to relocate.
Due to enter into force for road and rail transport in June 2009, with a transitional period until June 2011 for inland waterways, this Directive will give EU Member States the possibility to prescribe not only routes, but also the modes of transport to use for the carriage of dangerous goods.
Transporting dangerous goods by rail and/or inland waterways requires transshipment in stations which are very often located in town centers, where population density is generally the highest. Statistics show that 80% of accidents involving dangerous goods occur in ports and marshalling yards, during their transfer from one mode to another. Therefore, with this Directive, the EU Commission runs the risk to endanger the lives of EU citizens!
Paul Wauters, President of the IRUís Expert Group on Dangerous Goods (GEMD) and CEO of Wauters Tanktransport n.v., stated, "The purpose of the ADR regulation on the carriage of dangerous goods is to authorise their transport in optimal safety conditions. Thus, it is crucial, for any ADR transport, that the consignor, carrier and consignee keep the freedom to choose the means of transport they would rather use. Dictating such measures to the dangerous goods sector will inevitably result in the delocalisation of the EUís chemical industry outside the European Union.Ē
The IRU therefore strongly opposes that the mode of transport to be used is imposed on businesses. Besides being anticompetitive and therefore questionable vis-à-vis European law, this Directive will dramatically penalise the entire chemical goods industry, its competitiveness and more particularly, the carriers of dangerous goods themselves.
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