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Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Gunns, Govt reject truck overloading claim.

Gunns, Govt reject truck overloading claim. 30/11/2005. ABC News Online

Tasmanian timber company Gunns and the State Government have rejected fresh claims the company has been allowed to overload log trucks with impunity.

The allegations were raised in Parliament yesterday.

An email to the Premier from an engineer with a commercial trucking interest, John Lambert was tabled by the Greens yesterday.

Spokesman Kim Booth told the House it alleges Gunns has benefited from overloaded heavy vehicles and its contractors have not been penalised by transport authorities.

Similar allegations were made earlier this year.

Gunns says it does not pay for overloads and requires contractors to obey laws.

Premier Paul Lennon will not yet consider referring the email to the Director of Public Prosecutions.

"I want to have a look at it first but I could ask the obvious question, why Mr Booth hasn't done that," he said.

Mr Lennon says Mr Booth has abused parliamentary privilege.

Infrastructure Minister Bryan Green says he is confident inspectors enforce regulations and says the accusations against are a disgrace.

"I will defend our transport inspectors to the hilt. I know that they do not compromise with respect to the work that they do, and beyond that, if you look at the statistics of the number of vehicles that have been pulled over and the infringement notices that have been handed out," he said.

"Mr Booth raises these allegations knowing full well that the company in question, Gunns, has ruled out and said that will absolutely not be paying for any overloaded vehicles," he said.

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