Northland sting leads to ‘real concern’ as hundreds of trucks fail inspections

In the wake of Covis-19 and the resulting truck parts shortages, Stuff News report that, about one in five trucks stopped in a Northland sting is still not roadworthy, police say – just days after they issued a warning to drivers to ensure their vehicles are up to scratch.

On Tuesday, police said 96 of the 534 trucks stopped during the first three days of the sting was not roadworthy – about 18 per cent.

On Friday, police said there had been 1201 heavy vehicles stopped to date, with 222 failing their inspections. Twenty-two had serious faults and were given non-operational orders.

The operation, run in partnership with Worksafe, was in response to more 800 container trucks carrying Christmas cargo to Auckland after a container ship unloaded at Northport to avoid waiting weeks to get into the congested Ports of Auckland.

Police have now issued a total of 156 infringement notices and 56 written warnings.

Senior sergeant Mike Flatt said the continued trend of faults being identified is disappointing.

“In one case we identified seven faults on a single truck that was stopped on State Highway 1. Two other trucks had four faults identified each.

“The largest percentage of faults being identified are still related to lighting and wheels and brakes, which remains of concern to us.”

Waka Kotahi senior manager of safer commercial transport Brett Aldridge reinforced police concerns.

“What we are finding roadside is a real concern and should serve as a stark warning to the trucking industry that it must comply with safety standards,” Aldridge said.

“We will be following up with operators to ensure they have the right systems and processes in place so that their fleets are well maintained and safe.

“Where we find safety issues, we will not hesitate to take action.”

The road safety operation will continue over the coming weeks as further containers are transported.