LandLineMag.com reports that in light of the legislative push to increase the size and weight of large commercial vehicles, the American Trucking Associations have officially withdrawn their petition for heavier trucks. Our Chicago truck accident lawyers learned that earlier this week, the presidents of both the American Trucking Associations, as well as, the Association of American Railroads have signed a joint letter which urges legislative representatives to oppose longer and heavier trucks. The increased truck weight limit and size is an article found within a House bill entitled “HR7” which is a $260 billion surface transportation authorization bill. The provision would result in increased truck weights of up to 97,000 pounds and permitted states to make decisions regarding longer combination vehicles – such as double or triple tractor-trailers.
The news report reveals that given the joint agreement of both the American Trucking Associations and the Association of American Railroads, the likelihood that the heavier truck provision will continue as part of “HR7” is slim to none. However, our accident attorneys in Chicago learned that although the increased truck weight and size issue has subsided, provisions of the House bill would still permit several states to implement a program which would allow testing of 126,000 pound commercial vehicles on 25 mile stretches of interstate highways. Over the course of the following week, debate over “HR7” will continue to remain a topic in the House as lawmakers are set to begin debating the bill and proposing floor amendments.
Any Chicago accident lawyer will tell you that heavier and larger commercial vehicles pose a significant threat to the safety on our nation’s roadways. SafeRoads.org reveals that not only do overweight (over 80,000 pounds) trucks take significantly longer to come to complete stops; they are substantially more prone to roll-over accidents. Additionally, overweight commercial vehicles cause major damage to both roadways and bridges at rapidly increasing rates – even when slightly overloaded. According to a 2005 study conducted by the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration, 5,190 fatalities were reported in 2004 as a direct result of large trucks, an additional 116,000 were injured in large truck collisions.
If you have been injured in an Illinois trucking accident or have lost a loved one as a result of an overloaded semi truck accident, please contact our Illinois truck accident attorneys. Our experienced lawyers will provide a free initial consultation to help determine what legal rights and relief may be available to you.