The not-so-great wall of Missouri

By Terry Scruton
staff writer


Every so often, you read quotes so mind-bogglingly stupid you can’t believe someone actually thought them, let alone said them out loud. Such comments tend to come from elected officials.

For example, there were a couple of doozies in a recent article in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch about left lane restrictions on trucks.

If you haven’t heard, one lane of Interstate 70 through part of St. Charles County in Missouri became off-limits to large trucks as of Jan. 1, courtesy of a piece of state legislation written by State Rep. Vicki Schneider, R-O’Fallon, and signed into law in 2007.

Schneider told the Post-Dispatch, “If I had my druthers, the ban would be on all Interstates.” Crazy, right? But it doesn’t stop there.

The story also quoted state Rep. John Griesheimer, a republican from Washington, MO, who said: “Most people feel trucks are a menace and a danger to them on the highways. Anything we can do to curb the trucks and provide more rules and regulations for them, the better off we are.”

Let’s take a look at what would happen if trucks were suddenly banned from the left lanes of all major highways.

On three-lane highways, instead of having three lanes in which to maneuver, trucks would be bunched up into two lanes, bringing them even closer together and creating even more of a hazard for four-wheelers and other trucks on the road.

On two-lane highways, trucks would be banned from the left lane, thus creating a virtual wall of trucks in the right lane. You know what else is in the right lane? The exit and entrance ramps for the highways. You try getting off and on a highway in the middle of a wall of trucks passing by at 65 miles per hour.

It’s painfully obvious to me that neither Schneider nor Griesheimer live in a little place I like to call the real world.


Editor’s note: Terry first aired this rant in January on OOIDA’s “Land Line Now” show on XM Satellite Radio. It set certain lawmakers’ phone lines on fire. To the credit of Rep. John Griesheimer, he immediately contacted show Host Mark Reddig and apologized for his comment.