As of Wednesday, July 1, a lift bridge northeast of Minneapolis will be off-limits to truck drivers.
Linda Marotz of DL & S Carriers in Stillwater, said the ban is long overdue.
“As far as I’m concerned, they should have banned trucks on that bridge 10 years ago. It just makes sense,” Marotz told Land Line.
The new rule approved by Minnesota lawmakers several weeks ago restricts to 55 feet the length of commercial vehicle combinations using state Highway 36 in downtown Stillwater, MN. It is common for truckers to use the route to access the Stillwater Lift Bridge, which crosses the St. Croix River.
Signs notifying truckers of the length restriction are required to be posted by the July 1 effective date. The restriction will not apply to specially permitted vehicles.
Advocates say the ban was necessary to crack down on truckers using the Stillwater bridge to avoid inspections at the St. Croix Weigh Station/Hudson Port of Entry on Interstate 94.
Others say it will alleviate congestion downtown and reduce wear and tear on the aging structure.
“I regret having to impose restrictions on commercial trucks accessing the bridge, but until we can get a new river crossing there is simply no other choice. Public safety must be our number one concern, and we are hopeful these new limits will reduce the risk of personal injury and property damage in downtown Stillwater,” said Sen. Ray Vandeveer, R-Forest Lake, in a written statement.
To view other legislative activities of interest for Minnesota in 2009, click here.
– By Keith Goble, state legislative editor
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