Illinois laws cover truck ops, road repairs and safety

| Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Multiple new laws in Illinois are intended to reduce costs for trucking operations, save the state money on road repairs, and improve safety on roadways.

Gov. Pat Quinn signed one bill into law on Monday, Aug. 22, which is intended to reduce fuel and equipment costs for trucking companies throughout the state.

The Illinois Department of Transportation is now allowed, under certain circumstances, to issue permits for loads that exceed size and weight restrictions for short trips.

Previously SB42, the new law applies to divisible loads that previously had to be broken down into separate shipments to meet truck weight limits. Divisible loads include sand, gravel, dirt, logs, fuel and garbage.

IDOT can now issue the necessary permits for a truck hauling a load on a state highway in excess of 80,000 pounds if the truck is traveling less than five miles and the larger load will not cause additional damage to pavement.

Gov. Pat Quinn called it a commonsense law that will cut transportation costs for companies throughout Illinois and put people back to work.

A separate bill signed into law by the governor is designed to make Illinois roads more environmentally friendly while also saving the state some dough.

HB1326 allows IDOT to use asphalt made from recycled roofing shingles. The new law also instructs the agency to maximize the use of recycled materials in construction projects.

The Quinn administration says these actions will save the state an estimated $8 million a year.

“We must continue to embrace green practices in building our roads,” Quinn said in a statement.

Another new law is intended to strengthen drunken driving enforcement in the state.

HB1241 requires law enforcement officers to request a chemical test of an alleged drunken driver when the officer has probable cause to believe that alcohol was a factor in an accident that caused personal injury or death.

Until now, police procedure has accepted, but did not require, chemical tests that reliably measure blood and urine samples for intoxication levels.

To view other legislative activities of interest for Illinois, click here.

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