In a Nov. 3 vote, the U.S. House of Representatives rejected a new law that would have raised the current weight limit of 80,000 pounds to 91,000 pounds for trucks with an added sixth axle and specific types of added braking technologies.
Opponents of the SAFE Act suggested it would not only decrease road wear and save money but increase safety because of the requirements for additional braking equipment. However, the bill failed to get backing from various drivers groups, mostly because of the cost of implementation, and some groups like the American Trucking Associations largely failed to weigh in at all. The Truckload Carriers Association, meanwhile, said the bill would “only benefit a minority of the industry.”
However, some critics charge that the bill was really killed because of lobbying by the railroad industry, pointing out the existing competition between rail and truck shipping.