A WEIGHT restriction on HGVs using Norton level crossing, which was supposed to have been made permanent, will need to undergo a further consultation period following an “administrative error”.

An 18-month experimental 7.5-tonne restriction designed to improve air quality in Malton and Norton came into force in February 2018 and was due to expire on August 9.

It was recommended that the restriction be made permanent in a report to a North Yorkshire County Council’s (NYCC) business and environmental services (BES) meeting in July, with the condition that the limit should be looked at again following a forthcoming increase in the rail services in Malton and a review of the impact of that on traffic flows and air quality.

The report also acknowledged the experimental weight restriction had created issues on roads elsewhere, but its contribution towards air quality improvements could not be ignored.

However, it has since emerged that due to an administrative error the permanent order that has been made is incorrect and requires to be re-advertised.

The re-advertisement is expected to start shortly which will mean that members of the public will have the opportunity to register objections, which will require a further report to the NYCC BES executive members before the permanent order can be implemented.

County Cllr Keane Duncan, who represents Norton, said this was just the latest in number of issues surrounding the HGV ban.

“The HGV ban has caused problem after problem,” he said.

“The latest issue is just one in a long line.

“I believe it is time for the council to cut its losses and end the ban as soon as possible.”

Cllr Duncan said he had asked for information on the costs relating to the weight limit scheme and was told the county council had spent approximately £20k on the signing scheme and associated legal costs.

It was estimated that the additional cost of the re-advertisement would be in the region of £500.

Cllr Duncan said: “The HGV ban is continuing to cause major traffic issues in town and surrounding villages.

“Instead of pursuing the ban, the focus should instead be on the long-awaited solutions to beat congestion and real action to improve air quality in Malton and Norton.”

Richard Marr, Highways Area Manager, said: “We have discovered an error in the order placing a permanent weight restriction prohibiting heavy commercial vehicles from using Norton level crossing.

“This makes enforcement of the order difficult and it will, therefore, need to be re-advertised.”