bills that would restrict usage of engine brakes are rapidly moving forward
through Illinois General Assembly.
two bills – SB534 in the Senate and HB2497 in the House – would permit counties
or cities to post signs that prohibit the use of engine brakes that make
the bills do not define what would constitute “excessive noise.”
HB2497 has unanimously passed the
House April 6 and is headed into the state Senate. SB534 was sent to the Senate
floor for a final vote in that chamber April 8.
bills would allow truckers to use an engine brake if it is properly muffled so
that it does not exceed noise limits, and both would allow use of an engine
brake in an emergency situation, which the bills define as brake use to “avoid a collision
with a person or another vehicle.”
Sen. Christine Radogno, R-Lemont, sponsored the Senate version, while Rep. Jim Sacia, R-Freeport,
introduced the House version.
Department of Transportation would set up the rules for how and where the signs
could be set up. However, the wording is set in the bills. The signs would be
required to say: “Excessive engine braking noise prohibited.” Both bills would
charge a $75 fine against truckers who commit engine brake violations.
Spencer, executive vice president of OOIDA, said that if the state had concerns
about noise, it should write a law that addresses that and doesn’t
unnecessarily impede use of a required safety device.
simply focus on an engine brake makes no sense whatsoever; that’s not the
issue,” he said.
this is an issue for the Legislature, then they need to focus on what the real
issue is, and that’s how much a noise a truck makes. If it makes too much
noise, whether it’s stopping or starting, it could be the subject of
enforcement. Whether or not the truck is equipped with an engine brake is
irrelevant to the noise issue.”
– By Mark H. Reddig, associate editor