Yesterday, in a column in DC Velocity, longtime trucking industry veteran and supply chain expert, Clifford Lynch, predicted the proposal to allow widespread adoption of Twin 33 foot trailers on the nation’s highways “will be one of the few things approved during this session of Congress.”
Noting that the debate on Twin 33s two years ago “was hardly the first go-round on the issue,” Lynch argues the current political landscape and the newest findings showing that Twin 33s would result in 3.1 billion fewer vehicle miles traveled and 4,500 fewer accidents, are proving to be particular advantageous to advancing legislation and allowing Twin 33s nationwide to “finally see the light of day.”
Referring to a recent study conducted by the trucking safety expert Ronald Knipling on Twin 33s, Lynch explains that past concerns about longer trailers, especially those raised by the Truckload Carriers Association (TCA), no longer have ground. He affirms the report “addresses specifically—and I think, convincingly—each of the concerns of the TCA.”
In summary, Lynch emphasizes that “rather than increasing safety risks, the use of higher-capacity trailers would actually improve safety while at the same time providing a number of environmental and economic benefits.”
Lynch concludes that “If one takes this report at face value—and so far, there seems to be no reason not to—it would be difficult for legislators to ignore the potential benefits of using T-33s.”
“No doubt, there will be lengthy partisan debates. But at this point, I think the prospects of passage look good.”
Will 33-foot twins be born this year?
By: Clifford Lynch
Just two years after it was shot down by Congress, legislation to allow the use of 33-foot twin trailers (T-33s) on the nation’s highways may finally see the light of day. In 2015, a proposal to extend the length limit on twin-trailers to 33 feet from the current 28-foot maximum gained some traction on Capitol Hill. But it wasn’t enough. The House killed the proposal before passing a five-year federal transport funding bill in late 2015.
That was hardly the first go-round on the issue. For years, less-than-truckload (LTL) and parcel carriers have been pushing for legislation to extend the current limit, which has been in place since 1982. The increase in trailer length would add 18 percent of cubic capacity to each truck run. Backers say the move would boost productivity and reduce the number of trucks on the road because each trailer could haul more goods.
Full piece available here.