- Apr 18, 2007
Weight watchers: Are heavy trucks and SUVs illegal on some California roads?
Pop quiz: if you're driving an H2 and you see a sign forbidding vehicles above 6,000 pounds to use a street, do you avoid that street? Neither does anyone else. In a sarcastic, meandering article touching on carbon dioxide, gasoline, SUV-haters, municipal codes, and testosterone, the LA Times looks at the genesis of road weight restrictions and how SUV's trample on them.
The California Motor Vehicle Code has all sorts of byzantine rules applicable to different kinds of trucks and what roads they can use. Certain roads and bridges are explicitly off limits to vehicles weighing more than three tons. But those rules were made when nobody expected the random businessman, housewife, or athlete to be driving a vehicle weighing more than three tons just for the heck of it. (FYI, a half-ton Suburban weighs more than 7,000 pounds before the first soccer mom gets in.)
But in spite of the proverbial legal limbo, a city spokesman said the rule applies, in general, to "business and commercial trucks." Even better, he was backed up by a pickup-truck-driving LAPD officer who let everyone off the hook by saying "We are not going to cite somebody for driving an SUV down the street." Roll on, ladies and gentlemen, roll on.
Thanks for the tip, Stedwoo!
[Source: LA Times]