THE two weighbridges commissioned in the north last year have been under repair for almost a year raising concerns among motorists about the sustainability of road condition between Savusavu and Labasa, the Hibiscus Highway.
The weighbridges — stationed at Tabia, outside Labasa Town and Ganilau Park in Savusavu — were commissioned in February last year by Transport Minister Colonel Timoci Natuva.
"We have been working on the program that was damaged when water seeped into the software. This water is from the rain and we have also had mud entering the machines," Land Transport Authority media officer Alfred Wiliame confirmed.
"The machines will return to its stations this year as we also await funding for the repair charges which is a substantial amount," Mr Wiliame said.
The Fiji Times spoke to some motorists along the Hibiscus Highway last week and one of the major concerns raised was the absence of the weighbridges that sat on either end of the highway.
The weighbridges, motorist Pita Ratuvuwai said helped prevent damage to the highway that was mostly used by heavily-laden trucks.
"Some logging trucks are overloaded and now that we have the harvesting season, we will see more cane trucks not forgetting the 10-wheeler trucks that travel in from Viti Levu for business purposes," Mr Ratuvuwai said.
"If all these trucks are overloaded, the road damage is highly likely to happen," he said.
Another Savusavu road user Mohammed Khalim said the number of potholes seemed to increase along the highway and having weighbridges would help control the weight of trucks that used this road.
"We need to have the weighbridges to maintain the good condition on the highway," Mr Khalim said.
Fiji Roads Authority spokesman Iliesa Sokia said the weighbridges played a vital role in road maintenance.
"It monitors the weight of loaded trucks and in using weighbridges, we also prevent damage on our roads," Mr Sokia said.
However, he said he was not aware of the situation in the north.
"But we will raise this matter with the LTA," he added.
Early this year, a road user committee was formed by the Commissioner Northern's office and the issue of heavy loaded trucks was discussed as a cause of road damage.