Motorway go-slow protests are held all around the Netherlands. Vladimir Putin’s motorcade speeds through Chechnya. France magazine runs down great drives around the Channel Ports while clampers in Dublin are on to a big bonus.
DUTCH MOTORWAY GO SLOW PROTEST.
Rolling road blocks ahead of rush hour.
A go-slow protest is planned on motorways throughout the Netherlands this afternoon.
It kicks off at 15:00 and takes the form of a rolling road block moving at 40kmh. The fast lane will be kept free.
Police are aware of the demonstration and say they will intervene if it gets out of hand. It’s expected to last for up to 90 minutes. See a map of the affected motorways.
Major gatherings are expected at The Dam square in Amsterdam and the Botlek tunnel bridge in Rotterdam.
The action has been sparked by a group of truckers – see the official Facebook page – though it’s not certain actual trucks will take part over concerns individual companies could be picked out in the media.
Truckers are angry over general government austerity policy, the EU and large job losses recently in a sector that, according to official figures, accounts for 15% of the entire European road freight industry.
Another important issue is the price of fuel. Unleaded 95 sells for €1.785/l, Europe’s second most expensive, though diesel is in ninth place, at €1.499/l.
Meanwhile, new figures say Dutch haulage may have turned the corner due to higher exports. It grew by 2.5% in the fourth quarter 2013, the first growth for several years.
update: there was no gridlock but the demonstrations were quite well attended. Clumps of slow moving traffic appeared at points on most motorways around the country though individual delays did not exceed 30mins. Organisers warn of more blockades in the future.
MOTORCADE CHIC: VLADIMIR PUTIN IN CHECHNYA.
A go fast motorway demonstration.
roundup: TOURING. France magazine picks out the best roads around the Channel ports, including Roscoff, Le Havre, Calais and St Malo. DUBLIN. Clamping more than 60,000 cars this year means staff are in line for a €2,000 bonus, and time off at the end of the day say reports today. SLOVAKIA. Truckers are threatening to strike because they say the govt has reneged on a deal to abolish tolls on roads in urban areas and secondary roads, not to increase on main roads and level fines at ‘the European average’.