Iowa Gov. Chet Culver has signed a bill into law setting higher weight limits for six- and seven-axle trucks that travel on country roads.

Currently, most vehicles or combinations of vehicles are subject to a gross weight limit of up to 80,000 pounds, while livestock or construction vehicles with six or seven axles can hold 80,500 pounds to 90,000 pounds for six axles, and up to 96,000 pounds for seven axles. The new bill extends the same weight limits to all commercial vehicles of similar size, not just livestock and construction vehicles.

"This bill means trucks will be able to carry more freight in fewer trips, increasing economic efficiency for farmers and businesses," Culver said. "Every driver will benefit from this law because it will mean fewer trucks and less wear and tear on our roads, plus increased safety."

According to Culver, the new law will benefit the state's infrastructure, as trucks spread their weight over more axles and reduce stress on the roads. He also expects fewer trucks to be out on the roads as a result, with less fuel being used. In addition, the legislation is expected to make the roads safer with increased stopping power due to additional brakes.

The bill does not apply to vehicles operated on interstate highways.