The Coalition for Transportation Productivity (CTP) – made up of 200 U.S.-based top manufacturers, shippers, carriers, retailers, producers, and other allied associations – has sent a letter to Congress. The letter requests that Congress take a closer look at data issued by the Department of Transportation (DOT) in its “Comprehensive Truck Size and Weight Limits Study.”
What’s the purpose of DOT’s Comprehensive Truck Size and Weight Limits Study?
The objective of DOT’s study was to conduct a comparative analysis of the impacts between trucking operations with (1) trucks following federal size and weight regulations and (2) those trucks operating above limits. DOT also explained that the attention is more focused on six-axle tractor trailers and other alternative configurations.
Although DOT admitted that the findings did not yield anything of true significance due to “data limitations,” CTP believes that the study has still some important conclusions. These findings led the CTP to send a letter to Congress.
What is CTP’s request to the Congress?
CTP wants to inform the Congress that the study has some significant conclusions that should not be ignored. One of these, in which the CTP strongly supports, is the increase of federal vehicle weight limit to 97,000 pounds for trucks equipped with six axles.
In a letter sent to Congress
, CTP says, “The technical findings from the U.S. DOT’s Comprehensive Truck Size & Weight Limits Study show positive performance for six-axle trucks traveling at both 91,000 and 97,000 pounds, while also confirming reduced logistics costs, pavement life-cycle costs, fuel costs, vehicle miles traveled, congestion, and emissions associated with these configurations as compared to the five-axle, 80,000 pound control vehicle.”
The letter obviously wants to convince the Congress that DOT’s study is enough to prove that raising the maximum weight capacity to 97,000 pounds can impact the overall productivity of the trucking industry. CTP also explained that the raise could save as much as $2.4 billion in infrastructure repairs, and could help build a better economy.
As shown in the study, CTP is confident that these six-axle configurations are safe. Below are some benefits, according to CTP:
- lowered total national logistics costs
- minimal fuel consumption
- reduced pavement restoration costs with manageable bridge impacts
- minimized vehicle miles traveled
- fewer emissions
- increased freight transportation efficiency