The Road Development Agency (RDA) has collected over K63 million as toll gate fees since the introduction of road tolling in the country three months ago.
RDA Chief Executive Officer, Bernard Chiwala, said about K21 million was collected on a monthly basis from weigh bridges dotted across the country from the period November 1, 2013 to January 31, 2014.
Mr Chiwala expressed optimism that more money will be raised once toll plazas are fully operational to capture smaller vehicles so that more money can be channelled to maintenance of roads throughout the country.
Mr Chiwala was speaking when he toured the Kapiri Mposhi Weighbridge which is being rehabilitated into an ultra–modern weighbridge at the cost of K31 million by a Chinese construction company, Sinohydro Zambia Limited.
The weighbridge will be the first of its kind in Zambia and has an expanded capacity through a multi deck platform and improved tailor made data capture system to handle the increased volume of buses and trucks.
Director of Commercial and Technical Services, Stephen Mwale, said an additional weighing platform and control building has been constructed and once operational, the weighbridge will be able to speedily and efficiently handle 1,000 vehicles per day from the current 500.
Mr Mwale assured that the development will put to an end the perennial congestion that previously characterised the weighbridge and reduce on damage to roads due to overloading.
He disclosed that the agency has bought road patrol vehicles and will intensify road patrols to ensure that axle load violations on Zambian roads are curbed.
“There is a maximum and allowable weight it takes. These vehicles have standard weights and beyond certain level, you damage the road. Roads not regulated of axle load can only last up to 3 years instead of the 15 years,” he said.
Mr Mwale added that the Kapiri Mposhi junction has been re-engineered with increased road lanes and traffic lights in order to allow free flow of traffic around the weighbridge.
Mr Chiwala said the refurbished Kapiri Mposhi weighbridge will be commissioned by April 1, 2014.