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Technical Paper

Highway Legislation and the Six-Wheel Truck

ASSERTING as a premise that highway legislation should be purely a matter of economics, the author draws a comparison between the costs of building a cheap road and hauling with 2½-ton trucks and building a heavier road and hauling with 5-ton trucks. He shows by this illustration that the latter proceeding is the more economical. Most States permit gross weights of vehicle and load that make it possible to haul pay-loads of about 5 tons. If 5-ton trucks show a saving in transportation costs over 2½-ton trucks, still larger capacity four-wheel trucks might show a corresponding saving over 5-ton trucks, from which it might be argued that all roads should be built sufficiently strong to carry the heavier vehicles and loads without damage. But it is pointed out that there are a great many secondary roads on which traffic is light, and that it is uneconomic to build roads and roadbeds stronger than is warranted by economic needs.