India paves way for Australian-style roadtrains

India’s Automotive Industry Standards Committee has amended its AIS-113 Standard to include the safety requirements of roadtrains.

A draft including the amendments for multi-combination heavy vehicles like those pioneered in Australia was hosted on the Ministry of Roads Transport & Highway’s website.

AIS-113 factors in the Code of Practice for Type Approval of trailers/semi-trailers of categories T2, T3 and T4 being towed by commercial vehicles classified under the heavy-duty categories N2 and N3.

The standards have been prepared in line with Indian operating standards following an examination of commercial vehicle benchmarks overseas, particularly in Europe, as part of a drive to reduce costs and congestion, save fuel and innovate the high demand for road freight movements throughout the country.

“These standards shall pave the way for a breakthrough intervention for fast and efficient movement of goods along the long-distance freight corridors,” the Ministry announced in a statement.

The Automotive Industry Standards Committee represents members from the relevant ministries, testing agencies, industry stakeholders and the Bureau of Indian Standards.

The amended standard AIS-113 has been published for invitation of public comments.

Truck sales have plummeted in India after a strong 2018 with poor freight availability, lower freight rates, axle load increses and a general slowdown in the economy which have continued to hamper the commercial vehicle demand.

Meanwhile in North Dakota, a trial run for roadtrains cleared a final legislative hurdle last week.

In a 39-6 vote the North Dakota Senate greenlit a pilot program for higher mass multiple-trailer combinations, with the measure clearing the House 70-22 later that same day.

The proposal now awaits sign-off from North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum.

If signed into law, Senate Bill 2026 would introduce long multi-combination heavy vehicles to North Dakota roads in a limited-scope pilot program overseen by the North Dakota Department of Transportation.

Plans are already in place for roadtrains to start running in the northwest corner of the state, near Crosby, according to Minot Republican Sen. Oley Larsen, who sponsored the bill.