FMCSA called out to publish study on weights

FMCSA called out to publish study on weights

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has reportedly finished a study of truck weight limits, and a group of shippers is calling for the agency to release the results.

The Coalition for Transportation Productivity believes the data supports higher weight limits, and it is backing a call by Rep. Reid Ribble for the Department of Transportation to publish the study.

The initial data from the Congressionally mandated Comprehensive Truck Size and Weight Limits Study was scheduled to be released in November 2014 with a full report available this spring. Some data from the report has been circulated in the industry, and at least one FMCSA representative has spoken formally about the findings, but the agency has not publicly released the study or submitted it to Congress.

“These FMCSA results will inform our decision-making as the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee begins work on the highway bill,” said Ribble in a letter to United States Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx.

“With the initial deadlines for the results already behind us, it is imperative that DOT release any completed results … in real time.”

The shipping organization supports an increase in overall weight limits for trucks along with an increase in axle numbers, so it is especially interested in reports that an FMCSA official has verified the safety of heavier but longer trucks.

“To my knowledge, at least one FMCSA representative had publicly discussed the results of the agency’s safety analysis, noting that the stopping distance between a five-axle truck loaded to the current federal gross vehicle weight limit of 80,000 pounds is identical to the stopping distance of a six-axle truck loaded to 97,000 pounds,” said Ribble.