Proposal for raising length limit for trucks before Congress

Proposal for raising length limit for trucks before Congress

There are many things that can be impacted by federal trucking regulations. One is the safety of the nation’s roads. These regulations impact what sorts of things a trucking company could face fines or other consequences from the federal government for doing or not doing, which could perhaps influence the behavior of trucking companies. What truck companies do can be very impactful on traffic safety.

Federal truck regulations can also have impacts when it comes to truck accident cases.

This is because whether or not the trucking company connected to a truck involved in an accident committed any federal trucking regulation violations in relation to the truck can have implications in such cases.

Thus, what specific rules are contained in federal trucking regulations can matter quite a bit. There is a proposal to change one of these rules in a transportation spending bill Congress is currently considering.

The rule in question involves what the federal trailer-length limit is for trucks that are pulling two trailers in tandem. Currently, the length limit under federal regulations for each trailer in such a situation is 28 feet. The proposed change would raise this limit to 33 feet.

Trucking Regulations Impact Roadway Safety

Supporters of this proposal argue that the change would not have negative effects safety-wise and would have fuel, cost and environmental benefits.

Opponents of this proposal contest the argument that road safety would be unhurt by the change, arguing that longer trucks would be more difficult for truck drivers to brake and handle.

Which argument are you more swayed by? What impacts do you think the proposed length limit rule change would have if passed? Would road safety be affected by such a change?

Source: The Times-Tribune, “Trucking-friendly plan in Congress decried as attack on safety,” Jeff Plungis, May 5, 2015