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Australia not only jurisdiction to struggle with bigger trucks

The US trucking industry shares Australia’s pain in trying to secure greater access for higher productivity vehicles

February 9, 2012

With the use of higher productivity vehicles in Australia a highly charged affair, news has emerged the US trucking industry is also struggling to win support for the combinations.

According to online news reports, the United States House of Representatives has removed provisions allowing heavier trucks to access state and federal highways from the American Energy and Infrastructure Jobs Act of 2012.

The Surface Transportation Bill, understood to be worth US$260 billion over five years, originally allowed state governments to permit combinations weighing up to 97,000 pounds (44 tonnes) on six axles to operate on interstate highways.

Also removed from the Bill was a requirement that multiple trailer combinations, those with three or more trailers, be granted additional operating routes.

A spokesman for the American Trucking Associations, Sean McNally, called the removal of the provisions “disappointing”.

“There have already been dozens and dozens of studies that show increasing truck productivity reduces truck miles travelled, which not only reduces accident risk, congestion and emissions, but also will ultimately save money in reduced highway maintenance costs,” McNally says.

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