The U.S. Transportation Department’s Federal Highway Administration is holding a webinar next month to provide an update on the progress of its Comprehensive Truck Size and Weight Limits Study.
What’s described by the department as this third public outreach session will take place on May 6 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., Eastern time.
The current federal highway funding authorization, known as MAP-21, requires the DOT to conduct a study addressing differences in safety risks, infrastructure impacts, and the effect on levels of enforcement between trucks operating within federal truck size and weight limits and trucks legally operating in excess of them. The study is also supposed to compare and contrast the potential safety and infrastructure impacts of alternative configurations to the current federal size and weight rules along with estimating the effects of freight diversion due to these alternative configurations.
Webinar details and registration information will be sent to individuals who have registered on the Comprehensive Truck Size and Weight Limits Study email list and will also be posted on FHWA's Truck Size and Weight website.
Some groups are pushing for increasing truck size and weight limits, saying it will lead to efficiency gains in trucking while opponents claim any hikes will result in a greater number and more severe truck involved accidents. Those wanting changes are hoping to get them included in the next highway funding authorization, with the current one expiring at the end of September.
A recent review by the Transportation Research Board has revealed possible weaknesses in the truck size and weight study. Groups opposing the changes have seized upon this new report saying it shows the process if flawed when it comes to possibly allowing bigger or heavier trucks.