House weighs proposal to allow heavier trucks on interstates
WASHINGTON - The House is considering a controversial amendment to allow heavier trucks on interstate highways in an effort to save shippers time and money.
The amendment by Rep. Reid Ribble, R-Wisc., offered to a larger transportation bill, is expected to be voted on Tuesday. Ribble says trucks leave dairy farms and paper mills in his district half full because they've reached the maximum weight.
The amendment would allow states to increase the maximum weight for trucks to 91,000 pounds from the current 80,000 pounds. It is opposed by the railroad industry, which stands to lose business to trucks if it passes; safety advocates, who say it would lead to more traffic deaths, and Democrats who complain it will lead to more wear-and-tear on roads.