Alabama trying to keep trucks on right routes

| Wednesday, June 28, 2006

If you’re driving around Birmingham, AL, anytime soon, you may want to double check and make sure you are on the right route – especially if you’re near Malfunction Junction.

The Birmingham News reported that inspectors with the Department of Public Safety are cracking down on trucks that use routes other than designated truck routes. Specifically, inspectors will be watching trucks headed into the interchange of Interstate 65 and Interstate 20/59.

That interchange, known as Malfunction Junction, was the site of two recent accidents involving trucks from the same company. Alabama DOT officials told The Birmingham News that both of those trucks should have been on Interstate 459, the designated truck route around downtown Birmingham.

The state designated I-459 as a truck route in mid-June. The DOT has placed signs along the roads to let truckers know that only trucks bound for I-65 North are allowed to take I-20/59 through downtown. All others must take I-459.

The state will put additional troopers on the road who will stop trucks – whether they have probable cause or not – and inspect their paperwork to determine which route they should be traveling.

A spokesman for the DOT told The Birmingham News that truckers on the wrong route will be ticketed for failure to obey a traffic control device, i.e. the signs.

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