board member Bill Rode testified recently against a bill in Idaho
that would significantly increase the weight of trucks allowed on
some Idaho roads. Despite his testimony, the bill moved forward
to the full House.
HB282, multiple trailer trucks with overweight permits could weigh
up to 129,000 pounds. The current restriction is 105,500 pounds.
will only help a few large companies to get more freight hauled
for less money, as they will need less trucks and drivers,” Rode
told the House Transportation Committee during a hearing on the
bill March 6. “HB282 will hurt the small business trucker here in
pointed out a number of problems the larger trucks could cause,
damage to bridges already in need of repairs
- Safety concerns
on the state’s hilly, curved two-lane roads – many of which would
carry the larger trucks under the bill’s provisions.
- Having the
same freight hauled by fewer truckers would cut the number of trucking
jobs in the state, further weakening Idaho’s economy.
addition, he said the state, which like others is facing a fiscal
crisis, would face significant road repair costs.
the past, everyone has blamed the pot holes and brakes in the road
on the trucks that weight 80,000 pounds,” he said. “What will 129,000
pounds do to the roads?”
Transportation Committee voted 8-5 on March 7 to recommend passage
of HB282 by the full House. A spokeswoman for the Legislature said
a final vote in that chamber was expected soon.
appears the skids are greased legislatively, and the only thing
that’s going to keep it from passing will be a tremendous outcry
from the motoring public in Idaho, and there ought to be that outcry,”
Todd Spencer, executive vice president of OOIDA, said.
the bill, the heavier trucks would only be allowed on specified
highways in the state, all in the southern half. They would still
be banned from interstates.
South Idaho Press reported Feb. 28 that the bill was supported
by agribusiness interests in the state, but is opposed by railroad
interests, despite the fact that the railroads do not serve the
loads the trucks would carry, according to JoAnn Wood, Chairman
of House Transportation and Defense Committee Transportation Department.
Mark H. Reddig, associate editor