The last block check this year already took place last week. Austrians are preparing further restrictions. Tyrol’s practices and plans do not please Germany.
Last Monday, the last block check in Tyrol for 2018 took place. Although the controls lasted only for three hours (from 5 am to 8 pm), they caused a 9-kilometer long traffic jam.
The German government responded to the request of the party Alliance 90/The Greens to comment on further restrictions planned by the Austrians. In its statement, German authorities stressed that the block checks planned by Tyrol constitute a breach of the EU freedom of movement of goods. Such inconveniences in road transport of goods are unacceptable in a united Europe.
Recall that in April this year the European Commission assessed the block checks as „disproportionate and unhelpful” and called on Tyrol to limit their number. The Tyrolean government, however, announced that there would be even more controls, i.e. 30 in the next year (in 2018 there were 26).
Block checks are just the beginning
The Tyrolean Landtag (parliament) approved at the end of October the so-called Anti-Transit Package, which is to enter into force on 1 August 2019. It provides a series of solutions aimed primarily at improving the air quality and safety and health of Brenner residents, as well as relieving the road infrastructure. As announced by Ingrid Felipe, deputy governor of Tyrol, the sectoral ban on truck traffic will be extended to include further groups of goods that can be successfully transported by rail (details are not yet known).
At the same time, on 1 August next year, special permits will be removed which apply to vehicles complying with the EURO 6 emission standard. Additionally, the package foresees a general traffic ban for EURO 4 trucks and EURO 5 trucks will not be able to pass through Tyrol from 2021. That’s when night traffic ban for EURO 6 trucks will start to apply as well.
In addition, the Tyroleans are ready for the toll corridor from Munich to Verona and higher prices, just to better manage traffic.
Bavarian carriers are strongly criticizing the package
The Bavarian transport union LBT does not spare criticism of the plans of the Austrians.
If the Anti-Transit Package actually enters into force on 1 August 2019, the already difficult trade between Bavaria and Italy will have even a harder time – said Hans Ach, President of LBT in a statement for eurotransport.de.
Ah also reminds that the ongoing proceedings against Austria regarding the sectoral ban on lorries have been suspended in the hope that trucks complying with the Euro 6 emissions standard will be excluded from it. Germany also points out that Austrian transport companies often avoid Tyrolean highways and carry out domestic routes (loading and unloading in Austria) through Germany.
If Tyrol implements its Anti-Transit Package, we will demand concrete remedies,” adds Ach.
– Where is it written that Bavaria must accept unrestricted use by the Austrians of German roads to carry out domestic transport?” he asks rhetorically.
It seems that Tyrol would not accept the exchange of goods on its territory at all. That’s not how Europe works,” says Ach.
Photo: Wikimedia/Kleszczu CCA-SA 2.5 Generic