The problem of crossing the Brenner Pass, one of the most important transport routes in Europe, is growing. The government in the Austrian Tyrol is introducing new restrictions on truck traffic every now and then, affecting Italian and German carriers the most.
However, the long congestion when crossing the pass has a negative impact on transportation throughout Europe. Recently, queues at the pass, which is the most convenient connection between Italy and Germany, have reached almost 70 kilometers. Even the European Commission has become involved in the matter, and the Brenner was discussed heatedly during a meeting of the Transport, Telecommunications, and Energy Council.
Unfortunately, the European Commission has no idea how to solve the problem. The conflict over traffic restrictions on the pass could be exacerbated if the Austrians introduce a mandatory reservation system for trucks. Such an idea is criticized not only by the European Commission, but even by Austrian transport organizations. – The proposed system will not reduce truck traffic through the Brenner Pass, but will cause even more traffic jams and thus higher carbon dioxide emissions.
This is because no one can tell exactly when a truck will arrive at the border. What happens if the truck arrives early or too late? – comments Alexander Friesz, president of ZV Spedition & Logistik.
Experts, including ZV Spedition & Logistik, believe that the solution to the huge congestion at the pass is the opposite of the measures proposed by the Austrian Ministry for Climate Protection. Even the lifting of the night traffic ban could help increase transport capacity on the pass. At the meeting of the aforementioned Council, the Italian Transport Minister asked the European Council and the EC to intervene in the Brenner case. He was supported by the transport ministers of Germany, the Czech Republic, Romania, the Netherlands, and Bulgaria, among others. – The driving bans have caused huge traffic jams.
Queues reach 70 kilometers, and vacations are just around the corner. “This is an unacceptable situation, not to mention the carbon emissions” sums up Raluca Marian, EU Advocacy Director at the International Road Transport Union.