Operators can now apply for the new round of permits to run longer semi-trailers (LSTs), as part of the extension to the trial announced earlier this year.

The DfT has extended the original 10-year trial by five years, and made permits available for an additional 1,000 LSTs.

The permits allow the holder to run either 15.65m or 14.6m trailers, on the condition that they report data from their operation back to the DfT.

Permits for the new wave of trailer can be obtained by emailing freight@dft.gsi.gov.uk, and operators will be able to put the new trailers on the road from 1 May onwards.

Operators will have six weeks to prove they’ve ordered their permitted trailers after the permit has been granted by DfT.

The RHA said it supported the time limit, which, it said, demonstrated that “applications should only be made where there is a firm intention to order and not be speculative”.

Operators already running LSTs in the trial are eligible to apply for further permits.