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Thread: NC considering allowing 53 foot trucks on all primary highways

  1. #1
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    NC considering allowing 53 foot trucks on all primary highways

    Moving up from the current 48 foot limit would mean fewer trucks needed, reducing emissions & fuel usage.

    But some of the roads aren't even equipped to handle the 48 footers.

    Lake Lure Police Chief Eric Hester said truck drivers already struggle to control their vehicles when traversing some of his town's routes, and that his officers sometimes escort the small trucks in an effort to stave off an accident.

    Both residents and police officers alike have been run off the road by wayward trucks in his town, which is located about 45 minutes outside of Asheville, he said.

    "I have seen 48-foot trucks coming through the town of Lake Lure ... that cannot stay in their own lane, much less a 53-foot truck," Hester said.
    http://www.wral.com/news/local/politics/story/3099633/

    Chip H.

    Former owner: 2012 Honda Civic LX, 2006 Honda Ridgeline RTL, 2000 Honda CR-V EX, 2003 MINI Cooper S, 1992 Honda Accord LX, 1999 Mercedes ML-320, 1995 VW Jetta GLX, 1991 Mercury Capri XR2, 1981 Mercury Zephyr, 1975 Chevrolet Impala

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    Senior Member grouch's Avatar
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    Re: NC considering allowing 53 foot trucks on all primary highways



    A lot of the problems with truck drivers is the way they learn to drive. When I started driving, the owner of the equipment was sitting next to me until he was sure I knew what I was doing. Now, we have truck driving schools. Generally, whoever comes out of those is barely able to drive a truck. They usually go to work for either J.B.Hunt or Schnieder as those two companies will accept the higher insurance rates for a newbie driver. Drivers with those two companies are basically stuck there for the two years most companies want.

    I make my living loading trucks. How some of those drivers make it to the other end of the run is a wonder at times. I've literally pointed to a dock straight ahead and told a driver to back into it. As I went to get his material I looked over my shoulder to see him do a u-turn and leave the property.
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    Re: NC considering allowing 53 foot trucks on all primary highways

    An interesting exercise before they consider this seriously would be to stop, oh, say, 1,000 53-foot trucks at the NC scales, open them up, and see how many of them would actually benefit from the additional length. It is very rare for a 53-foot trailer to be full; there is even a line inside showing where to stop loading heavier loads, so that the weight can be distributed properly.

    It would be much wiser (and therefore will not happen) to leave trailers at 48 feet and lower the floor, using smaller tires, to get the same space as a 53. This would also improve safety and fuel mileage.

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    Re: NC considering allowing 53 foot trucks on all primary highways

    Quote Originally Posted by mrblanche
    An interesting exercise before they consider this seriously would be to stop, oh, say, 1,000 53-foot trucks at the NC scales, open them up, and see how many of them would actually benefit from the additional length. It is very rare for a 53-foot trailer to be full; there is even a line inside showing where to stop loading heavier loads, so that the weight can be distributed properly.

    It would be much wiser (and therefore will not happen) to leave trailers at 48 feet and lower the floor, using smaller tires, to get the same space as a 53. This would also improve safety and fuel mileage.
    More interesting, I think is to guess at the (very) small number of trucks or loads which would benefit from the increased size, especially since this would apply only to intra-state travel.

    Instead of (or in addition to, reduced tire size the trailer floors could be lowered between the axles much as are othe low density vehicles such as buses assuming that the flat floor could be sacrificed.

    How are ya and regards to Dottie.


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    Senior Member grouch's Avatar
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    Re: NC considering allowing 53 foot trucks on all primary highways

    Quote Originally Posted by mrblanche
    An interesting exercise before they consider this seriously would be to stop, oh, say, 1,000 53-foot trucks at the NC scales, open them up, and see how many of them would actually benefit from the additional length. It is very rare for a 53-foot trailer to be full; there is even a line inside showing where to stop loading heavier loads, so that the weight can be distributed properly.

    It would be much wiser (and therefore will not happen) to leave trailers at 48 feet and lower the floor, using smaller tires, to get the same space as a 53. This would also improve safety and fuel mileage.

    We get 53 foot trailers a lot at work. It does make it easier to get the load on without turning pallets. However, if I'm sending a van trailer to Kalifornia, I make sure to stop at the 48 foot line because of the bridge laws in the state. Lower floors aren't too good of an idea as a lot of recesed docks will drag the trailer jacks and if the truck has to cross rural railroad tracks, the vehicle can high side and get stuck. Not a good thing to happen when you hear the railroad horns blowing coming down the tracks toward you.
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    Re: NC considering allowing 53 foot trucks on all primary highways

    Quote Originally Posted by jdm
    How are ya and regards to Dottie.

    Sold the truck and went to work driving for Toys R Us. Good job, although not the highest pay in the industry. But I usually only work 4 days per week.

    We went to Sweden in June on Volvo Truck's dime. Had a great time, except for a little incident involving clumsy old men (me), luggage, and a flight of stairs at the Stockholm train station. I'm now wearing a reminder of that on my right wrist, and will for a few more weeks.

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    Senior Member misterdecibel's Avatar
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    Re: NC considering allowing 53 foot trucks on all primary highways

    How was the Swedish medical care?

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    Re: NC considering allowing 53 foot trucks on all primary highways

    Quote Originally Posted by mrblanche
    Sold the truck and went to work driving for Toys R Us. Good job, although not the highest pay in the industry. But I usually only work 4 days per week.

    We went to Sweden in June on Volvo Truck's dime. Had a great time, except for a little incident involving clumsy old men (me), luggage, and a flight of stairs at the Stockholm train station. I'm now wearing a reminder of that on my right wrist, and will for a few more weeks.
    Sorry to hear about your luggage incident.

    How come only driving 4 days a week? Are you hitting your wheel-time limit?

    Chip H.

    Former owner: 2012 Honda Civic LX, 2006 Honda Ridgeline RTL, 2000 Honda CR-V EX, 2003 MINI Cooper S, 1992 Honda Accord LX, 1999 Mercedes ML-320, 1995 VW Jetta GLX, 1991 Mercury Capri XR2, 1981 Mercury Zephyr, 1975 Chevrolet Impala

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    Re: NC considering allowing 53 foot trucks on all primary highways

    Quote Originally Posted by misterdecibel
    How was the Swedish medical care?
    I wouldn't know. It wasn't obviously broken, and we were on a tight schedule, and my head wasn't bleeding all that badly!

    Hey, I'm TOUGH, dangit!

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    Re: NC considering allowing 53 foot trucks on all primary highways

    Quote Originally Posted by chiph
    Sorry to hear about your luggage incident.

    How come only driving 4 days a week? Are you hitting your wheel-time limit?

    Chip H.
    No, that would take six days, which happens around Christmas time. They're just set up to work 4 days per week most of the year, throughout the distribution center.

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