Trucking Cpacity

What can you do with 91,000 lbs.?

Posted on September 14, 2015 · Posted in US Trucking Regulation

How about increase U.S. freight capacity

Sean Kimbrough September 14, 2015

Safe Trucking ActSeptember 10, 2015 Representative Reid Ribble of Wisconsin introduced a bill called the Safe Trucking Act increasing federal weight restrictions from 80,000 lbs. on 5 axles to 91,000 lbs. on 6 axles over U.S. Interstate Highway system giving states guidelines to adjust their own weight requirements on state highways.

According to the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), research from June of this year, indicates increasing weight and adding a 6th axle to commercial Class 8 semi-truck and trailer rigs will have not have negative impact on highway safety or bridge integrity.

With all that said, what will increased weight limits in the Safe Trucking Act do for Americans?

  1. According to research from the United Kingdom, Wisconsin DOT and American Trucking Association, interstate highway trucking accidents will either remain at current levels or decrease. Hard to complain about that, right?
  2. With increased freight weight capacity, it would reduce the amount of trucks on the road, reducing congestion and reducing CO2 emissions (lower carbon footprint). Go green.
  3. According to U.S. DOT, by lowering per axle weight limits will reduce pavement costs and extend life of existing highway/bridge infrastructure. Saving U.S. tax dollars is good, right?
  4. By allowing increased weight per trailered load, shippers can deliver more goods with same amount of truck loads, lowering shipping costs per unit and strengthening U.S. economic activity. I like the way that sounds!

What does it do for the trucking industry?

  1. Increase capacity with current amount of inventory
  2. Save money related to accident expenses and downtime
  3. Reduce demand for more drivers
  4. Meet lower federal carbon footprint/emissions requirements – make Uncle Sam happy

Since 1Q 2015, the trucking industry has seen a sharp downturn from the rate and capacity highs of 2014. Smaller companies currently have difficulty sourcing enough loads to keep their drivers on the road. Unfortunately, if this legislation passes, small companies will need to adjust their strategic thinking on how to keep sourcing lighter weighted loads. Smaller companies may not have immediate resources to add the additional axle on all owned trailers (estimates to add additional axles are $6,500-8,500).

I don’t know about you, but this solution to the capacity crunch and driver shortage sounds much better than allowing teenage drivers behind the wheel of an 80,000 lb. “big rig of destruction”.

Allow EquipTrac to work with your company’s fleet management tracking needs to help maximize efficiencies and save money.