With a fully-loaded trailer, a large semi-truck can weigh as much as 80,000 lbs. If you think that’s daunting, imagine a semi-truck with twin tandem trailers.
They do exist. You may have seen these massive vehicles, which can weigh up to 91,000 lbs, cruising down Interstates 10 or 410.
Twin tandem trailers are currently limited by law to 28 feet but a legislative battle is raging, with proponents pushing for twin tandem trailers to be increased to 33 feet in length. Advocates claim that this is not only perfectly safe, but will help move commercial goods at a higher rate, requiring fewer trucks to meet delivery goals.
Longer trailers mean more congestion
The effort to increase the size of twin 28s has been met with opposition from Sen. Roger Wicker (R-Miss), as well as several law enforcement officers. Opponents argue that increasing the length of double-trailers can add more congestion to Texas highways – many of which are already crowded with commercial vehicles and smaller passenger vehicles. State highways have already seen a 23 percent increase in traffic volume from 2000-2016.
San Antonio ranks the fourth most congested city for driving in Texas (42nd nationwide), with each driver spending an average of 25 hours in traffic in 2017. Adding longer trucks into the mix can be dangerous for the following reasons:
- They are more difficult to pass, especially when lanes merge.
- The length of the trailers can obstruct visibility for other road users.
- The added weight requires more stopping distance than single-trailer semi trucks.
- Drivers of double-trailer trucks may not be aware of what is happening around the back end of the second trailer.
- Longer trailers mean more blind spots.
- They can cause more damage in a collision, rollover, lane-departure accident, or jackknife accident.
- They may be difficult to operate, especially with limited experience.
Pursuing a claim after a truck accident
From a safety standpoint, there may be no benefit to increasing the size of twin tandem trailers. Doing so will only put other road users at risk of a catastrophic accident. Operating these types of vehicles is already difficult enough and requires drivers with extensive training and skill.
If you or a loved one was injured in a truck accident, it is critical that you speak to an experienced San Antonio attorney as soon as possible. A crash involving two trailers can be messy. Multiple parties can be affected. Navigating the claims process can be confusing and frustrating. That’s why you should never go it alone.
Don’t hesitate. Contact The Herrera Law Firm today to discuss your options.