The Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) says it will commence the enforcement of safety standards for trucks operating in the nation’s ports by Oct. 2, 2014.
The Apapa Port Manager, Mr Anas Nasir, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Monday in Lagos that the move was to ensure the trucks met basic international safety requirements for maritime operations.
“We are coming up with minimum standards for the trucks which we are going to start enforcing from Oct. 2, 2014.
“Trucks must meet some minimum standards of safety requirements like carriage, tryes, breaking system and particulars to start with”, Nasir said.
He said the compliance process would be gradual to enable concerned truck operators to integrate smoothly into the system.
“It is going to be gradual because at the beginning, we have to get some basic things that must be complied with.
“Often times and apart from such challenges as bad roads outside the port, the trucks are equally bad.
“While we are doing some palliatives on the roads, we are going to ensure that the trucks are much better to be able to operate”, he said.
Reacting to the proposed new operational standards, Chief Remi Ogungbemi, Chairman, Association of Maritime Truck Owners, said that his members were ready and were making effort to adjust to the standards.
“We are aware of NPA’s plan to begin the enforcement of the standard for the trucks, so, it is not going to take us unaware”, he said.
Ogungbemi said the initiative would encourage people to maintain their trucks and it would impact on their business positively.
NAN recalls that the NPA’s moves followed the cries of stakeholders on the high number of aged and rickety trucks operating in Nigerian ports.
They also report that the trucks posed serious safety challenges to maritime operators and constitute major constraints to the projected hours in ports service delivery. (NAN)