NFU Scotland is urging farmers and crofters to apply to Police Scotland now for an agricultural dispensation for wide vehicle movements ahead of the busy harvest period later this year.
With working patterns in Police Scotland’s Abnormal Loads team affected by Covid-19, the Union is encouraging members to apply for a dispensation or a renewal at least six weeks before it may be required.
The scheme, which NFU Scotland agreed with Police Scotland following extensive discussions, means that members with wide vehicles can apply for a dispensation to avoid having to notify police for each individual movement.
Abnormal load dispensations are required if a vehicle and implement, is over three metres in width and/or projects more than four metres. Farmers and contractors should check the dimensions of their vehicles and implement and any vehicle which exceeds these dimensions or may exceed them with an implement attached should be included on the dispensation. The application is simple and free of charge.
Farmers or contractors wanting to use this scheme can obtain an application form from Police Scotland or members can get it from NFU Scotland by logging into the member’s section of the Union’s website and using the form enclosed in the Business Guide or requesting a form from [email protected].
The completed form should be emailed to: [email protected].
On receipt of this form, if deemed appropriate for a dispensation, Police Scotland will issue a dispensation letter. It is important for recipients to check the details of the dispensation and carry the letter in all vehicles covered by it.
NFU Scotland members looking for more information in relation to wide vehicle movement requirements can seek advice from the free NFU Scotland helpline for transport and vehicles.
NFUS Transport Advisor, Jamie Smart, who runs NFU Scotland’s transport and vehicles helpline said: “There have been no derogations during Covid-19 for moving agricultural wide vehicles on the roads so it is important that farmers wishing to move vehicles or implements over three metres combined width must obtain a dispensation from Police Scotland.
“However, like all businesses, the abnormal loads office at Police Scotland are having to practice social distancing which may slow down applications.
“It is therefore recommended that farmers requiring a dispensation or renewal apply in plenty of time preferably 6 weeks before it is required or previous one expires.
“A copy of the dispensation document should be carried in vehicles pertaining to it and produced in the event the vehicle is stopped by Police Scotland. We once again thank Police Scotland for their continued support of this scheme, which NFU Scotland successfully pushed to have introduced.”