Bill would increase truck weight limit on interstates

Washington – A new House bill (.pdf file) would increase the federal weight limit for trucks traveling on interstates to 97,000 pounds from 80,000 pounds.

The Safe and Efficient Transportation Act (H.R. 612) was introduced Feb. 12 by Rep. Michael H. Michaud (D-ME).

The Washington-based Coalition for Transportation Productivity has stated the legislation would increase productivity in the trucking industry and maintain safety because it requires trucks exceeding 80,000 pounds to use a sixth axle and additional tires.

The Arlington, VA-based Truck Safety Coalition has opposed truck weight limit increases, citing a federal study (.pdf file) that found the truck fatal crash rate increased in Vermont and Maine after allowing heavier trucks on interstates in those states for one year.

At press time, the bill was in consideration in the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee and the House Ways and Means Committee.

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