Lorry drivers who continually flout weight restrictions on roads and bridges are being warned by Derbyshire County Council's trading standards that they will be prosecuted, after nearly 40 successful cases were brought by officers in just six months.
The county council’s trading standards team successfully prosecuted 38 cases between October 2019 and March 2020.
Drivers were caught across the county in 11 different locations, with four 'hot spots' - Stanton by Dale, Swarkestone Causeway, Winster and Youlgrave - accounting for 30 of the cases brought.
All but five of the 38 defendants came from outside of the county and the fines were up to £880 plus costs.
An offence is committed when a lorry driver breaches a weight restriction put in place by the county council. These restrictions typically prohibit lorries above a certain specified maximum gross weight from entering small villages or using vulnerable structures such as Swarkestone Causeway.
Drivers of vehicles significantly over the weight limit and repeat offenders are then considered for prosecution. It’s the driver that tends to be prosecuted as they’ve effectively ignored the prohibition signs which are in place at each restriction.
Cllr Carol Hart, Cabinet Member for Health and Communities, said: "There are weight restrictions on our roads for public safety reasons and in order to protect the environment so it’s only right that we work to banish overweight vehicles from unsuitable roads and we will take prosecute drivers when necessary.
"We give people fair warning for minor breaches of the weight limits but we’re not afraid to prosecute repeat offenders and drivers of the largest vehicles.
"We know that this is an area that concerns Derbyshire residents, especially those who live in small communities and often see large vehicles using unsuitable roads and causing damage.
"The latest prosecutions show that there are particular areas where offences occur and we’re vigilant in monitoring these but residents throughout the county can be our eyes and ears and report any suspected violations which we will investigate."