Idaho Truckers Can Now Operate at 129,000 lbs.
Idaho truckers are now able to carry loads up to 129,000 pounds on interstate highways as result of a provision inserted in the new federal highway bill. Idaho joins Nevada, Utah and Montana as states where truckers can legally operate on the interstate 49,000 pounds heavier that what is typically allowed.
Idaho Trucking Association President Julie Pipal said, “This is a tremendous development and provides a lot of great economic options for all the carriers.” It’s been a process. The state began a series of pilot programs on state routes in the late 1990s, then continued them with a ten-year program in 2003 that opened up two dozen state routes. The long duration pilot program proved useful because of the $40,000 investment required to handle the heavier loads.
According to Idaho’s Department of Transportation (ITD) 2013 final report on the program: “Between fiscal years 2004 and 2012, there were 264,169 pilot project trips made by 1,359 trucks from 127 different shipping companies. The main commodities hauled were sugar beets, hazardous waste, aggregates, agricultural feed, coal, and hay. ITD did not observe any significant effect of the 129,000-pound pilot project trucks on pavements, bridges or roadway safety.”
Before you decide to operate at the higher weight limits, motor carriers must submit an application to the Idaho Transportation Department, which will schedule a hearing as well as a 30-day public comment before a permit can be approved.