Lawmakers in Vermont are looking for ways to ease the disruption caused by large trucks in small communities while meeting the needs of the trucking industry.

During a joint session of the House and Senate transportation committees last week, residents of the villages of Woodstock and Wilmington complained about the disruptions caused by big trucks lumbering through their small towns. They demanded some help and asked that bans on 53-foot trailers on most Vermont highways be kept.
Officials from Woodstock, VT, presented recommendations that included authorizing single-trip permits for trucks between 65 feet and 70 feet when the vehicle has a Vermont destination. That would permit trucks hauling trailers longer than 48 feet to use Route 4 - currently off-limits to them between Quechee and Killington - as long as their destination was within the state.
Rep. Robert Starr, who owns a trucking business, pointed out that it is shippers that are driving the move to longer trailers. He suggested that companies that need to use longer trailers get permits from the state Motor Vehicles Department.