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NFU Cymru seeks higher tractor speed limits

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tractor limitFARMERS have welcomed the opportunity, provided by the Department of Transport, to review the maximum speed limit for tractors on public roads.

At a meeting with Glyn Davies MP, NFU Cymru Montgomeryshire Chairman, Jonathan Wilkinson said:

“The current speed limits for agricultural tractor and trailer combinations have not been reviewed for 27 years. The Road Vehicles (Construction and Use) Regulations 1986, stipulate constructional requirements which limit most agricultural tractors and trailers to a speed limit of 20mph.

“However, over the last 27 years agricultural machinery has increased in horsepower and speed as farming has become increasingly efficient. This increase has also come with other technological improvements which make tractors and trailers inherently safer. Indeed, tractor manufacturers now design and build tractors which are permitted to be used at far higher speed limits in other European member states and having a restrictive speed limit hinders Wales’ farmers’ capability to undertake efficient agricultural transport.”

Jonathan continued, “It’s not just efficient transport though, unnecessary delays add to rural road congestion causing frustration for farmers and other rural road users.

Safety is also compromised, as these delays can cause other road users to undertake risky overtaking manoeuvres.

“The inherent safety of agricultural vehicles has improved over time and the industry has taken measures to improve the mechanical maintenance of tractors and trailers on the road. Tractors are designed to brake at 50% efficiency and their ‘wet’ braking system is far less prone to deterioration than braking systems for other road vehicles.”

Jonathan concluded, “We’ve highlighted to Glyn Davies MP, the reasons why we believe the Government can now safely increase the speed limit to 25mph for all agricultural tractors. We’ve further suggested that for combinations of tractors & trailers where the brakes of the trailer have been tested within a period of one year and they can achieve a braking efficiency of at least 45%, the speed limit for that vehicle could be safely raised to the stated maximum design speed of 50kph.”

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Residents invited to a Pembroke Tunnel drop-in event

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NETWORK RAIL is inviting residents to a drop-in event to find out more about essential maintenance work at Pembroke Tunnel, west Wales, which will improve the resilience and reliability of the railway for passengers.
The work includes essential vegetation management and rock netting in the area with work taking place for a week in December before the main work takes place in January and February.
Ahead of the work residents are invited to a drop-in event on Monday 18 November from 3pm to 6.30pm at the Dutton Suite, Pembroke Leisure Centre, Bush, Pembroke, SA71 4RJ.
No appointments are necessary and members of the project team will be on hand to answer any questions.
Then between Saturday 14 and Friday 20 December Network Rail will carry out drilling work overnight to install rock anchors at the top of the railway cutting as Network Rail prepare for the main phase of the works.
That will then take place between Sunday 19 January 2020 and Saturday 8 February 2020 where engineers will work day and night to install rock anchors and bolts before installing the rock netting across the railway cutting using road rail vehicles and specialist machinery.
Michael Pinkerton, scheme project manager for Wales and Borders, said:
“We would like to thank residents in advance for their patience and understanding as we carry out this work at Pembroke Tunnel.
“All this planned essential work forms part of our commitment to maintain a safe and reliable railway that is fit for use now and in the future. We are working closely with our partners to keep disruption to the local community to a minimum and encourage anyone wishing to find out more about this work to come along to our drop-in event later.”

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“We have a duty to win” says Crabb at campaign launch

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STEPHEN CRABB has launched his 2019 General Election campaign, highlighting the ‘duty and responsibility’ the Party has to win.
The Welsh Conservative candidate is hoping to be re-elected on December 12, having served as MP for the last 14 years.
At the launch at Martha’s Vineyard on Milford Marina, Stephen addressed a crowd of supporters with a promise to continue being a strong voice for Preseli Pembrokeshire in Westminster.
Stephen Crabb has consistently been one of the hardest working Welsh MPs with a strong track record of standing up for the local community.
Speaking at the campaign launch, Stephen said: “This General Election will be the most important for many years.
“We face a choice between the Conservatives who have a clear plan to unblock Brexit and improve Britain – or a coalition of opposition parties under Jeremy Corbyn, who want more years of delay and division.
“That is not in our national interest nor is it in the best interests of Pembrokeshire. The Conservative Party has a serious duty and responsibility to go out and win this election.
“Over the last 14 years I have fought tirelessly for local people and local businesses and if re-elected, I will continue to work hard to give Pembrokeshire a strong voice in Parliament.”
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Christmas shopping misery for west Wales rail users

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RAIL USERS in west Wales face festive misery due to engineering works which will close the Carmarthen to Milford Haven link for almost a month.

The line will be closed from this Sunday, until the Sunday before Christmas, at a time when many take the train to Swansea and Cardiff shopping for gifts for friends and family.

Signs have already been posted at railway stations confirming the delays.

Trains will be replaced by buses; rail officials have said.

A spokesman from Network Rail said: “Due to essential maintenance work, rail replacement bus services will run between Carmarthen and Milford Haven from Monday, November 18 until Sunday, December 22.

“Pembroke dock and Fishguard services are also affected on Sunday November 24.

“On all other days of operation, the train services will continue to stop at Whitland, Clynderwen and Clarbeston Road, Fishguard and Goodwick, Fishguard Harbour and stations to Pembroke Dock.

“We apologise for any inconvenience.”

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