The Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) has started enforcement of the calibration of installed load weighbridges across the country to prevent avoidable damage of roads caused by overloading.
The Director-General of SON, Mallam Farouk Salim, made this known on Monday in Lagos at the official launch of the calibration of the APM terminal weighbridges at Apapa Port.
Salim, who was represented by Mr Bede Obayi, Director, National Metrology Institute (NMI), said that the development was sequel to the Federal Government’s directive via a letter by the Ministry of Transportation to the agency.
“As a result, SON has been directed by the Federal Government to ensure that the weighbridges at the ports and loading bays are fully calibrated.
“The calibration will be effected on weighbridges to ascertain the axle load for heavy-duty vehicles and food transport vehicles that carry wet and dry products,” he said.
The SON boss emphasised that the task given to the agency was to calibrate weighbridges for the measurement of all cargoes to prevent further damage to the roads and their users.
He noted that the letter provided guidelines and penalties for enforcement of the new regime of axle load limits in the country.
Salim said that the calibration, which would be extended to other seaports and oil depots and terminals, would help the government to get accurate weights of cargoes.
He said that the calibration would also check the influx of substandard goods and services in the country.
“Meteorology is the science of measurements and it can be used to check the influx of substandard goods and services in Nigeria,” he said.
The director-general stressed that the Federal Executive Council’s approvals on roads construction and management gave credence to SON’s calibration services so as to ensure the preservation and maintenance of roads for long-term use.
“The calibration implementation process is being carried out by other Africa countries to support the Africa Continental Free Trade Area.
“We are happy that this assignment is given to us; this shows that government appreciates our measuring roles.
“The SON is to ensure that these weighbridges give accurate measurements to the users.
“We want to assure all port stakeholders’ of accurate measurements and we enjoin them to always declare accurately necessary information about their imports and exports,” he said.
Salim reiterated the agency’s commitment to carrying out the directive in line with international best practices.