Mississippi transportation, safety and municipal officials are speaking out against Congressional proposals to increase heavy truck weights.
A Senate bill, S. 747, and House bill, H.B. 763, the Safe and Efficient Transportation Act, would increase maximum truck weight to 97,000 pounds from 80,000. The American Trucking Associations and Truckload Carriers Association support the increase.
“We at the Mississippi Department of Transportation are 125 percent opposed to this effort by Congress to increase weight limits on our highways,” said Central District Transportation Commissioner Dick Hall. “This measure will be counterproductive to all the progress we’ve made thus far and will hinder any future efforts.”
Allen Lyles, president of the Mississippi State Troopers Association, said, “By adding almost 20,000 pounds to the weight of a truck, you add 90,801,840 ft.-lb. of energy at 65 mph. In the real world, 20,000 more pounds on a big rig is a recipe for disaster, and most professional truck drivers would tell you the same thing.”
Affected trucks include model year 2008-2018 Freightliner Cascadia and Western Star 4700, 4900, 5700 and 6900 trucks. DTNA says after hard brake applications, the brake light pressure switch may not activate the brake lights with the light application of the brake pedal.