News Wire: Railroads to battle against larger trucks on US highways

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Posted by Brian Schmidt on Wednesday, May 16, 2018 8:52 AM

WASHINGTON — The battle to authorize larger trucks on the highways has been waged on Capitol Hill for decades. In 1982 Congress enacted a law that limited truck length on federally financed highways to no more than a tractor and two 28-foot tra...

http://trn.trains.com/news/news-wire/2018/05/16-railroads-to-battle-against-larger-trucks-on-us-highways

Brian Schmidt, Associate Editor Trains Magazine

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Posted by Shadow the Cats owner on Wednesday, May 16, 2018 12:00 PM

As an industry we do not want any increase in our GVW.  The group pushing for this the ATA we call in our office the American Shippers Assoc.  They are the Mega Fleets that can use their size to afford the new equipment that will be required to haul the heavier loads they want.  Sorry but most of their drivers I would not trust with a Potato peeler and a sack of Spuds with instructions on how to peel said spuds.  The largest carriers in the ATA are Swift Schiender JB Hunt CR England UPS Fed Ex and several others.  When the weather is bad who do you see on their sides in the ditches Fed Ex Swift and England.  Hell the standard jokes for Swift are Swing Wide It's a Fing Trailer Sure Wish I Finished Training See What I F'up Today and several more.  These are the carriers that want to lower the age limit from 21 to 18 for Interstate drivers.  They also refuse to accept any increase in training standards.  Yeah the best of the best in the OTR industry.

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Posted by VOLKER LANDWEHR on Wednesday, May 16, 2018 12:59 PM

It is easy to ask for longer and heavier trucks. But before granting this the questions about road and bridge load carrying capacity should be answered.

According to the linked report 39% of the bridges are 50 years and older, an additional 15% are between 40 and 49 years old. 9.1% of the highway bridges are structurally deficient already.

https://www.infrastructurereportcard.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/Bridges-Final.pdf

The following load was required from 1944 to 1993 (AASHTO HS20-44):
https://image.slidesharecdn.com/3danalysisoftrussbridges-12736769187-phpapp01/95/3d-analysis-of-truss-bridges-5-1024.jpg?cb=1280761459
Concentrated and liniear distributed load were not calculated simultanously until ASHHTO HL93. So many bridges more than 25 years old might get problematic.

These design limitations produce some for European eyes weird looking combinations.

We have the same request here in Germany. But it is already clear that if the trucks get longer the weight limit will stay unchanged. These trucks are only interesting for loads where volume maxes out before the load does.
Regards, Volker

Edit: I tried to make the first link clickable, but it didn't work. Please copy and paste into the adress field of your browser. Sorry

 

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Posted by cx500 on Wednesday, May 16, 2018 3:56 PM

When asking for increased weight limits, I hope the same trucking proponents are explaining how THEY plan to cover the cost of the necessary upgrades to the highway infrastructure.  You know, things such as bridges and subgrade which were designed in an era of lesser loads.   In a true free market economy I would expect them to be willing to accept a fairly significant surcharge perhaps based on mileage travelled by the heavier rigs (only).  Yes, I'm dreaming!

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Posted by BaltACD on Wednesday, May 16, 2018 4:33 PM

cx500
When asking for increased weight limits, I hope the same trucking proponents are explaining how THEY plan to cover the cost of the necessary upgrades to the highway infrastructure.  You know, things such as bridges and subgrade which were designed in an era of lesser loads.   In a true free market economy I would expect them to be willing to accept a fairly significant surcharge perhaps based on mileage travelled by the heavier rigs (only).  Yes, I'm dreaming!

You are well beyond dreaming - into the world of recreational pharacuticals!

         

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Posted by samfp1943 on Wednesday, May 16, 2018 10:53 PM

BaltACD
cx500

You are well beyond dreaming - into the world of recreational pharacuticals!

    I would stand by this statement  made earlier on this subject: "...Length is the major issue, in my mind....Added length gets to be problematic in most communities, as the improvements to local infrastructure fall behind the increases for length.

   Many engineering improvements in the older urban areas fail to recognize the added turning radii, and curbside infrastructure. Those are just some starting points for problems dealing with road infrastructure, and their construction engineering enhancements.
             Having operated trucks as the truck/ trailer combinations increased {starting with +> for trailer lengths-42' to 53' +, and overall combination lengths from 50'+ >.             This looks to be a long, and expensive public relations battle, as industry, and politicians align their finances; so they can pay. and be paid(?) to push their agendas for legislation, and regulations. And that is just at the Federal level..."

  If anyone here thinks that this is not a WAR, think again.   The Korean War was actually originally a 'United Nations Police Action'.  It lasted for 37 months (June 1950 to July 1953). It is still 'active, 65 years later;only having signed a "TRUCE" agreement among the combatants.   

 Ther Trucking Industry has pushed sizes> since the first motorized truck took over from the wagon.       More 'efficiency" and cost savings are their rationale.  Similarly, 'Bigger is Better' is heard from the railroads.      Remember, the first railroad cars were about 40' in length, and made of wood and metal; now they seem to constantly, grow larger and larger.                                                       It will almost be a constant circular battle of demands, on both sides.             Each side throwing point after point at the other, and then there are the arguments for 'INFRASTRUCTURE, and don't forget TAX Burdens on both sides.  

 At least the railroads are not having to steer their trains through streets, broad and narrow. Mischief                   Longer trailers and trucks, I had seen my share of police boxes, street signs, fire plugs on corners, and a night the lights went out in Coraopolis; fall to long trailers and inattentive drivers Whistling   

ShadowtheCatsOwner, I feel you pain!Crying

Sam

 

 


 

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Posted by Shadow the Cats owner on Thursday, May 17, 2018 6:29 AM

The only way this would ever pass is if the ATA members agree to a massive like 40-50 cent increase in the fuel tax to pay for the infastructre improvements needed.  They do that and every senator and representive in Washington DC is going to be like sure we will raise weight limits.  

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Posted by azrail on Thursday, May 17, 2018 2:37 PM

Which they will pass down to the shippers, who pass it down to the consumers.

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Posted by Shadow the Cats owner on Thursday, May 17, 2018 3:19 PM

On a per piece basis as long as trailers stay in the 53 foot range due to how tight the New England area is in general your looking at a cost increase to the consumer of less than 3% overall.  Why with this weight increase there would be less trucks rolling overall at first then when production capacity caught up you would see growth in demand.  An axle assembly for a trailer with tires suspension and brakes on it is 1 ton.  That still leaves 15K lbs for cargo or a 33% increase in what we can haul per truck right now.  At least here our drivelines could do it.  

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Posted by rvos1979 on Thursday, May 17, 2018 5:43 PM

I was in Pittsburgh yesterday, it's bad enough taking a 53 footer in there, I don't want to try taking a 57 footer around. I'd be willing to try the 97k on six axles, but I'd want at least 500 hp under the hood, with the economy gearing in these new trucks, 450 hp is bare minimum at 80k. Thing about the weights is, about half the time I'd be dragging around extra weight, as I'd cube out before getting close to the limit.

I don't see what the fuss is about going to double 33s, a set of doubles actually turns better than your single 53. These are only going to be for the LTL market anyways, where the doubles are terminal to terminal. I think the longer trailers would actually make them more stable going down the road, we don't call them 'wiggle wagons' for nothing........

Randy Vos

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Posted by Backshop on Thursday, May 17, 2018 9:20 PM

Anybody who wants to see what heavier trucks do to roads only needs to come to Michigan.

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Posted by BaltACD on Thursday, May 17, 2018 9:32 PM

Backshop
Anybody who wants to see what heavier trucks do to roads only needs to come to Michigan.

Was in Michigan 30 years ago and the Interstates were pitiful - don't imagine they have improved in the interim.

Saw Triple 27's chugging their way on my trip to Kansas and back.

         

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Posted by samfp1943 on Saturday, May 19, 2018 9:31 PM

rvos1979

I was in Pittsburgh yesterday, it's bad enough taking a 53 footer in there, I don't want to try taking a 57 footer around. I'd be willing to try the 97k on six axles, but I'd want at least 500 hp under the hood, with the economy gearing in these new trucks, 450 hp is bare minimum at 80k. Thing about the weights is, about half the time I'd be dragging around extra weight, as I'd cube out before getting close to the limit.

I don't see what the fuss is about going to double 33s, a set of doubles actually turns better than your single 53. These are only going to be for the LTL market anyways, where the doubles are terminal to terminal. I think the longer trailers would actually make them more stable going down the road, we don't call them 'wiggle wagons' for nothing........

 

        Randy(rvos1979) The longer trailer length simply provides more 'targeting' for curbside infrastructure; Fire plugs, street signs, lamp poles,etc.     Eventually, the engineering 'bubbas', learn to set that stuff back, but there is a learning curve for them. 

  Recall that when the 53' trailer was coming into vogue in the 1970's and beyond;New England was at first a 'no go' for them. The first thing they did was to have [53'] painted on the noses of the trailrs, so the cops could identify them and write their tickets?   Gradually, their presence up there was abated by the numbers and finally, legislation to allow them in the New England states.

Penna.  was among the last to stop harrassing their presence in the State, and off the Interstates.   Drivers still had to negotiate turns, and roads that were built in the days when trailers were just expanding from the sizes of wagons, and then as they increased; the infastructure was slowly changed, as longer trailers arrived on the scene. 

Cities like NYC, and Boston are still horrors to try and manover those 'big boxes', around in for p/u and delivery.  GCW's as they go up, will probably see Federal Regs mandate more axles, and possibly larger tire sizes(?)    One gets a slight idea of some of the combinations, that might just show up around the US, when looking North to Canada; Various 'Train configurations' certainly, while on US Turnpikes these days, Paired 45's, ( or mixed combinations?).  Even UPS seems to favor some pretty large power in their tractors.   Will be interesting , in the Future, to see how this movement for Larger, Longer, turns out.                          It sure seems that the race is on, for equipment that will cube out, before it grosses out.  Just mark me, as watching from the side lines, these days! Whistling

 

Sam

 

 


 

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Posted by VOLKER LANDWEHR on Sunday, May 20, 2018 9:04 AM

samfp1943
GCW's as they go up, will probably see Federal Regs mandate more axles, and possibly larger tire sizes(?)

The is something called Federal Bridge Weight Formula that allows to compare a truck and its axle loads and spacings against the the AASHTO HL93 design load:
https://web.archive.org/web/20030308203728/http://www.randmcnally.com/pdf/tdm/Federal_Bridge.pdf

The formula was developed for single-span bridges. two-span bridges might not be protected by this formula.

I don't know which length or maximum axle spacing limits apply. Taking the longest axle spacing of 60 ft from the table, 5 axles allow 85,500 lbs, 6 axle allow 90,000 lbs, 7 axles allow 95,000 lbs.

Larger tire sizes are not necessary as long as the allowed axle load is not increased.
Regards, Volker

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Posted by samfp1943 on Sunday, May 20, 2018 3:52 PM

[quote user="VOLKER LANDWEHR"]

samfp1943

The is something called Federal Bridge Weight Formula that allows to compare a truck and its axle loads and spacings against the the AASHTO HL93 design load:
https://web.archive.org/web/20030308203728/http://www.randmcnally.com/pdf/tdm/Federal_Bridge.pdf

The formula was developed for single-span bridges. two-span bridges might not be protected by this formula.

I don't know which length or maximum axle spacing limits apply. Taking the longest axle spacing of 60 ft from the table, 5 axles allow 85,500 lbs, 6 axle allow 90,000 lbs, 7 axles allow 95,000 lbs.

Larger tire sizes are not necessary as long as the allowed axle load is not increased.
Regards, Volker

[/quote] Thanks, Volker, for the response! 

  I am not going to argue with you about the Federal Bridge Law formulae [your engineering background is relatively apparent.]. Its' presence has been around since the first Interstate Highways's crossed state lines in this country.  It's formulas are, of course, mandated in the Federal Register, and its Codes. Further interpreted by various State Highway agencies to mirror whatever enforcement ends the particular State agency is legislated as required.  

 As someone who was involved in OTR trucking for a number of years; Interstate Commerce has always been subject to various levels of enforcement.  The State of Mississippi was one that incorporated tire sizes, and axle spacing as methods of enforcement. [ie:] Tennesse, and Arkansas were hyper-critical of overall length, and only permit loadings, seemed to get tire sizes factored in their enforcement.    Missouri, on the other hand seemed to take a deep-dive into the regulations, and at the least offence, one got everything inspected by their MoDOT Inspectors...   

  Canadian trucks seemed to favor a wider tandem spacing on tractors, and more-so on their trailers(and Trailer Combinations).    The wide-tread tires seem to be becoming more popular, as apparently, they have gained wider popularity, and performance quality have gone up. They are also appearing around this area on local transit mixer, and dump trucks, as well as, some of the construction equipment haulers.

 As to the Bridge Weight Forumlas, as prescribed in the aforementioned Federal Codes, for Bridge Laws; they came on in their earliest forms and were originally designed for compliances with U.S. Military Truck Standards [at the time] for Axle Loadings.         The Interstate System was originally designated by the Eisenhower Administration as the National 'Interstate and Defense Highway System'. and the then the State Legislative Bodies got hold of those Design Parameters, and started making changes in diamensions all over the system, to suit their particular financial goals, and involved funding issues.   The Northeaster States seemed to really suffer in those areas, and have over time, created some difficult engineering issues on their Highways.

 

Sam

 

 


 

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Posted by BaltACD on Sunday, May 20, 2018 5:49 PM

[quote user="samfp1943"]

[quote user="VOLKER LANDWEHR"]

samfp1943

The is something called Federal Bridge Weight Formula that allows to compare a truck and its axle loads and spacings against the the AASHTO HL93 design load:
https://web.archive.org/web/20030308203728/http://www.randmcnally.com/pdf/tdm/Federal_Bridge.pdf

The formula was developed for single-span bridges. two-span bridges might not be protected by this formula.

I don't know which length or maximum axle spacing limits apply. Taking the longest axle spacing of 60 ft from the table, 5 axles allow 85,500 lbs, 6 axle allow 90,000 lbs, 7 axles allow 95,000 lbs.

Larger tire sizes are not necessary as long as the allowed axle load is not increased.
Regards, Volker

[/quote] Thanks, Volker, for the response! 

  I am not going to argue with you about the Federal Bridge Law formulae [your engineering background is relatively apparent.]. Its' presence has been around since the first Interstate Highways's crossed state lines in this country.  It's formulas are, of course, mandated in the Federal Register, and its Codes. Further interpreted by various State Highway agencies to mirror whatever enforcement ends the particular State agency is legislated as required.  

 As someone who was involved in OTR trucking for a number of years; Interstate Commerce has always been subject to various levels of enforcement.  The State of Mississippi was one that incorporated tire sizes, and axle spacing as methods of enforcement. [ie:] Tennesse, and Arkansas were hyper-critical of overall length, and only permit loadings, seemed to get tire sizes factored in their enforcement.    Missouri, on the other hand seemed to take a deep-dive into the regulations, and at the least offence, one got everything inspected by their MoDOT Inspectors...   

  Canadian trucks seemed to favor a wider tandem spacing on tractors, and more-so on their trailers(and Trailer Combinations).    The wide-tread tires seem to be becoming more popular, as apparently, they have gained wider popularity, and performance quality have gone up. They are also appearing around this area on local transit mixer, and dump trucks, as well as, some of the construction equipment haulers.

 As to the Bridge Weight Forumlas, as prescribed in the aforementioned Federal Codes, for Bridge Laws; they came on in their earliest forms and were originally designed for compliances with U.S. Military Truck Standards]at the time] for Axle Loadings.         The Interstate System was originally designated by the Eisenhower Administration as the National 'Interstate and Defense Highway System'. and the then the State Legislative Bodies got hold of those Design Parameters, and started making changes in diamensions all over the system, to suite their particular financial goals, and involved funding issues.   The Northeaster States seemed to really suffer in those areas, and have over time created some difficult engineering issues on their Highways.[/quote]

Sounds like each state is trying their best to subvert any form of nationwide trucking policy as well as guming up any international trucking.

         

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Posted by Backshop on Sunday, May 20, 2018 6:07 PM

Michigan has many steelhaulers and gravel trains with 11 axles that are good intrastate for 162,000.  We were grandfathered in when the Feds came up with their regulations.  Every few years, some politician tries to get the limits lowered and the trucking association comes back with the "we need it for our industry" while ignoring that our "industry" isn't what it was even 20 years ago and that other states get along just fine with 80,000 GVW. They make campaign contributions to the right people and things get quiet for a few more years.

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