New Bill Would Allow Heavier Trucks

New legislation, dubbed the Safe and Efficient Transportation Act (SETA), may allow states to approve larger trucks, potentially increasing efficiency in long-haul trucking.

The new bill, introduced on April 7th, would permit states to draft their own rules on truck weight.  Trucks under the new legislation would be allowed up to 97,000 pounds and six axles.  Any truck weighing over 80,000 pounds would be required to use a six axle configuration.

"SETA is supported by a body of data collected from academic, state, federal and international experts who have evaluated or experienced this proposal and support the logic of the six-axle, 97,000-pound configuration as the new workhorse standard for the American truck fleet. Even though higher productivity, six-axle trucks are undeniably safe and more efficient, SETA still puts the decision into the hands of state officials, who are best equipped to determine if the configuration makes sense in their states” said CTP Executive Director John Runyan.

It is estimated that trucking tonnage and capacity will continue to increase over the next 10 years, leading to more trucks on the road and more drivers.  Increasing weight is an easy and quick way to increase the amount of goods shipped while not making significant changes to the nation’s highway infrastructure.  Some trucking companies support the bill while others feel it would be a significant expense to add additional 6 axle trailers to accommodate the larger loads.

This bill should not, however, make any changes to cdl training schools or the endorsements currently required to transport goods.


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