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Technical Paper

Field Testing of Proposed Tridem-Drive Tractor/Semi-Trailer Configurations

In October 2000 ICBC oversaw the field testing of two new tridem-drive tractor/semi-trailer configurations: one tridem lowbed semi-trailer, and the other a tridem hayrack semi-trailer. The lowbed configuration was tested with the aim of establishing heavy-haul permit conditions, and the hayrack with the intention of introducing the configuration into the regulations as a new logging truck combination for the province. The British Columbia logging truck industry has been an enthusiastic proponent of tridem-drive vehicles because these vehicles allow greater versatility and payload capacity than the industry currently enjoys, and they provide greater traction than tandem-drive trucks on steep off-highway grades. ICBC drafted a test plan designed to evaluate certain key handling characteristics of the proposed configurations, particularly dynamic stability. ICBC selected an independent Professional Engineer to prepare a finalized test plan and carry out the testing.