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July 16, 2019

The Honorable Kathy Castor
United States House of Representatives
Chair, U.S. House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis
H2-359 Ford Building
Washington, D.C. 20515

The Honorable Garret Graves
United States House of Representatives
Ranking Member, U.S. House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis
2402 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20515

Dear Chair Castor and Ranking Member Graves:

As you convene the hearing “Solving the Climate Crisis: Cleaning Up Heavy Duty Vehicles, Protecting Communities,” The Americans for Modern Transportation Coalition (AMT) wanted to advocate for our environmentally friendly solution to maximize trucking efficiency and increase environmental gains with a modest 5-foot increase to twin 28’ trailers – not an increase to the weight limits.

Domestically, e-commerce sales have grown from $42 billion in 2002 to $446 billion in 2017, and the Department of Transportation forecasts a 45% increase in freight volumes by 2045. Increasing the national twin trailer standard from 28 feet to 33 feet will bring immediate benefits to our environment and national infrastructure:

  • Environmental Gains – The efficiency gains from the adoption of Twin 33’ trailers would equate to 255 million fewer gallons of fuel and 2.9 million fewer tons of CO2 emissions.
  • Immediate Reduction of Trucks – The implementation of Twin 33’ trailers will result in 3.1 billion fewer truck miles traveled each year, resulting in less congestion at no cost to taxpayers.
  • Improved Safety on Our Roads – Furthermore, the reduction in the number of trucks on our roads would have tangible safety benefits. Additionally, Twin 33’ trailers perform better than many other truck configurations on four critical safety measures, including stability and rollover. Research shows that the adoption of Twin 33’ trailers would result in 4,500 fewer truck accidents annually, and 53.2 million hours saved due to less congestion. Furthermore, the following additional safety features on Twin 33s will enhance safety as they travel on the existing national highway network in a Twin 33 configuration:
    • Automatic emergency braking system
    • A speed limiting device capped at 68 miles per hour
    •  Electronic stability control
    • On-board safety video recorder
  • Industry Efficiencies – Twin 33’ trailers can move the same amount of freight with 18% fewer truck trips, allowing consumers and businesses to realize $2.6 billion annually in lower shipping costs and quicker delivery times.

Environmental investments today will benefit future generations. We urge the Committee to evaluate all options to bring about immediate environmental benefits.

We would be happy to speak with you to answer any questions.

Sincerely,

Randy Mullett
Executive Director, The Americans for Modern Transportation Coalition

cc: Members of the House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis