Five bills approved by the U.S. House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee this week are being welcomed by the American Trucking Associations (ATA) for addressing several trucking-related issues.
“The comprehensive and bipartisan bills that advanced today would address some of the root causes of ongoing supply chain challenges and improve the overall safety, efficiency and resiliency of freight transportation,” ATA president and CEO Chris Spear said.
The Truck Parking Safety Improvement Act looks to establish a grant program to fund truck parking across the U.S. At present there is just one parking spot for every 11 truck drivers, while drivers spend an estimated 56 minutes a day looking for safe parking spaces, the ATA notes.
The License Act, meanwhile, looks to entrench waivers that allow CDL examiners responsible for skills tests to also administer knowledge tests, and administer a skills test regardless of which state an applicant calls home. Those waivers were extended multiple times during the Covid-19 pandemic, and no safety impacts have emerged, ATA adds.
Adding to that, the Cars Act proposes a 10% weight tolerance for stinger-steer automobile transporters, which are now facing heavier payloads associated with battery-electric cars.
It’s not the only weight-related proposal. The Dry Bulk Weight Tolerance Act would also allow 10% weight tolerances for dry bulk carriers to allow for shifting cargo in vehicles that are loaded at or below federal weight limits.
Rounding out the list is a proposed 2,000-lb. weight exemption for hydrogen-powered vehicles (HR 3447), similar to those available for battery-electric and natural-gas trucks.