Almost one-in-five trucks heading to Marsden Pt to take containers to Auckland have failed safety checks - with 22 taken off the road - and police are warning they will take action against those not up to scratch.
Truckies picking up containers from Northport to take to Auckland are urged to do the right thing and ensure their trucks are safe and meet all standards.
Up to 800 trucks are hauling Christmas freight for Auckland retailers after 1340 containers were offloaded from Constantinos P at Northport, at Marsden Pt, earlier this month as Ports of Auckland was too busy to take the ship.
But police checking trucks have found many do not meet the standards required. Police are urging the trucking industry to ensure heavy vehicles are up to scratch as an ongoing safety operation in Northland continues to find faults.
The operation, run by Police's Commercial Vehicle Safety Team, Waka Kotahi and WorkSafe, is monitoring truck movements along State Highway 1 between Northport and Auckland and started the day containers started getting moved.
To date, there have been 1201 heavy vehicles stopped with 222 failing their inspections - a fail rate of around 1 in 5 heavy vehicles stopped.
Twenty-two of those heavy vehicles have been given non-operational orders, taking them off the road.
Senior Sergeant Mike Flatt, team leader for the Commercial Vehicle Safety Team, said the continued trend of faults being identified is disappointing.
"In one case we identified seven faults on a single truck that was stopped on State Highway 1.
Two other trucks had four faults identified each.
"The largest percentage of faults being identified are still related to lighting and wheels and brakes, which remains of concern to us."
Police have now issued a total of 156 infringement notices and 56 written warnings.
"While our staff don't want to be handing out infringement notices, our main priority remains ensuring that all road users, including the truck drivers themselves, are safe and get to their destinations safely."
Waka Kotahi senior manager safer commercial transport Brett Aldridge reinforced police concerns.
"What we are finding roadside is a real concern and should serve as a stark warning to the trucking industry that it must comply with safety standards," he said.
"We will be following up with operators to ensure they have the right systems and processes in place so that their fleets are well maintained and safe. Where we find safety issues, we will not hesitate to take action."
Chief executive of the Road Transport Forum, Nick Leggett, said the trucking industry fully supported police in its job of keeping people safe on the road.
"Our view is the police checks are a good reminder to trucking operators and drivers to stay on top of maintenance, especially in the peak season when roads are busy.''
SAFETY IN NUMBERS:
1340 - containers being trucked from Northport to Auckland.
800 trucks taking part.
1201 safety checks on the trucks.
222 failing their inspections.
22 - trucks ordered off the road over safety concerns