might have fewer lanes to use next summer if San Antonio signs on
to a 1997 state law authorizing cities to restrict truckers from
the fast lane of major highways during peak travel hours, The Associated
might implement a six-month pilot program by this summer on U.S.
Highway 90 and I-10, a stretch of almost 20 miles inside the city's
Loop 410, according to Monday's San Antonio Express-News.
the first to implement the rule in September 2000, restricting lanes
on an eight-mile stretch of I-10, roughly from Interstate 610 to
Sam Houston Parkway. Trucks were ordered to stay out of the far
left lane from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. Mondays through Fridays, except
when passing other vehicles.
A Texas Transportation
Institute study found that accidents decreased 68 percent on that
portion of I-10 over a nine-month period, with no deaths in the
crashes that did occur. Houston officials then decided to expand
the lane restrictions to portions of Interstate 45 and State Highway
director of education for the Texas Motor Transportation Association,
noted that the Texas Transportation Institute's study couldn't say
how much of the reduction in accidents was due to the lane restriction
or how much to a presence of police.
the state Transportation Department sent letters to San Antonio
and 71 other Texas cities promoting the law and suggesting that
they prohibit commercial trucks from driving in the left lane of
major highways with at least three through lanes.
The San Antonio
City Council may hold a public hearing in January on the proposal.
State transportation officials and the council would have to approve
state transportation officials say more than 50 percent of accidents
involving tractor-trailers are caused by drivers of cars doing things
such as changing lanes too quickly or being in a truck's blind spot.
But they say there's a potential advantage to separating trucks