Weighty question

SIR - Icy roads do not make potholes; they are made by the weight of heavy goods vehicles using that road.

When I was an apprentice at Leyland Motors more than 70 years ago, the maximum legal laden weight of a heavy goods vehicle was no more than 22 tons.

It was called the Leyland Octopus and had eight wheels (no prize for guessing why). It had a maximum legal speed of 30mph (reduced to 20mph in built-up areas) and, I quote, “had brakes having two means of operation, each of which will stop the vehicle within a reasonable distance”. It did not say what a “reasonable distance” was, that was decided by the person doing the testing.

It did not have power-assisted steering, but had a very large steering wheel which was of assistance to the driver.

I remember the vehicle was no more than 7ft 6 inches wide.

I could go on, but space prevents. I would just like to say I do not recall seeing many potholes, if at all, in those far off days.

Reduce gross vehicle laden weights and there will be fewer potholes for tax payers to repair. Reduce vehicle weights.

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Harry Walkden

Ex Senior Designer

Heavy Goods Vehicles

Aged 91 years