Amco Veba cranes, mounted on flat-bed trucks, are extensively used in car recovery by municipal authorities and private salvage contractors. This truck/crane combination is a very effective solution to removing vehicles and improving traffic flows.
However, to operate at maximum efficiency, the crane crews must be able to access the scene of the incident (accident, breakdown or abandonment) as quickly as possible, and, very importantly, have the authority to act to remove the obstruction when they arrive on scene.
This access and authority issue is recognised by the traffic authorities in the Netherlands who are now challenging a rule that a salvage worker, in case of a breakdown or accident, may only work if a road inspector from Rijkswaterstaat* is present.
Netherlands Traffic Minister, Cora van Nieuwenhuizen, now says that road inspectors from Rijkswaterstaat will help salvage companies to come to the rescue more quickly in an accident, so that annoying traffic jams are limited.
Van Nieuwenhuizen explained, “I think it is important that the roads are released as soon as possible after an accident. Cars with damage or breakdowns that remain on the road cause delays. One in five traffic jams is caused by an accident.” She continued: “For faster handling of incidents on the road, we are going to strategically deploy the road inspectors to places where the biggest nuisance occurs when there is an incident.”
At the moment, only 55 of the 260 road stewards are nationally authorized to use the blue flashing light and the siren so that they can rush past the traffic jam to an accident. “In the long run, I want all the road stewards to be able to drive with sirens and blue flashing lights,” said the Minister.
Better, quicker access should allow the deployment of more car recovery teams and must be a positive development for Amco Veba’s crane-based vehicle recovery systems.
* Rijkswaterstaat, part of the Netherlands Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment, is responsible for execution of public works and water management. Part of this remit is for the safe flow of traffic. Headquartered in Utrecht, the agency operates through ten regional offices.
Source: https://www.ad.nl/binnenland/bergers-sneller-in-actie-om-files-te-beperken~aa79e0e7/ (28 February, 2018)