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FEBRUARY 7, 2006
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TRUCK ROAD DAMAGE
CASPER

SIXTEEN MILLION DOLLARS.

THAT`S HOW MUCH MONEY ESRA CONSULTING SAYS IT TAKES FOR THE STATE TO REPAIR ROADS OVERLOADED TRUCKS DAMAGE.

STRESS FROM TRUCKS CAN CAUSE ASPHALT TO BUCKLE AND CRACK.

AT SAGE TECHNICAL TRAINING, WHERE TRUCKERS LEARN THE RULES OF THE ROAD, BARBARA BLAKE INTRODUCES THEM TO THE WYOMING SAFETY REGULATION MANUAL, THE TRUCKER`S BIBLE.

"WE TELL ALL OF OUR STUDENTS AND GRADUATES, WHEN THEY GET OUT, KEEP THIS UP-TO-DATE, `CAUSE THIS IS WHAT`S GOING TO KEEP YOU SAFE AND LEGAL. AND WE DO THIS FOR ALL OF OUR STUDENTS THAT GO THROUGH," SHE SAYS.

THE MANUAL OUTLINES THE LIMITS AND RULES FOR WYOMING`S ROADS.

BLAKE SAYS TRUCKERS IGNORE THESE AT THEIR OWN PERIL.

SHE SAYS THE FINES FOR VIOLATIONS ARE VERY HIGH.

"EVEN IF IT IS A REGULAR VIOLATION LIKE YOU AND I WOULD HAVE, FOR A COMMERCIAL DRIVER IT`S GONNA BE DOUBLE OR EVEN TRIPLE THE COST OF WHAT YOU AND I WOULD PAY IN OUR PASSENGER CAR, IT`S VERY EXPENSIVE."

TRUCKER AND INSTRUCTOR, JOHN WIXOM SAYS OVERWEIGHT AND IMPROPERLY-LOADED TRUCKS CAN TO DAMAGE TO THE ROADS AND THE TRUCKS, TOO.

"YOU CAN HAVE A TIRE BLOWOUT. YOU CAN HAVE ROUGH HANDLING, WHICH WILL AFFECT THE WAY THE VEHICLE TURNS OR STEERS. AND ALL OF THAT CAN AFFECT THE WAY THE VEHICLE HANDLES, AND CAUSE AN ACCIDENT," HE SAYS.

STATE HIGHWAY OFFICIALS SAY THAT`S WHY IT`S SO IMPORTANT FOR TRUCKS TO STOP AT WEIGH STATIONS AND PORTS OF ENTRY TO MAKE SURE THEY`RE WITHIN WEIGHT LIMITS AND LOADED CORRECTLY.

REPORTS FROM THE CONSULTING FIRM SHOW BILLIONS OF DOLLARS ARE SPENT EACH YEAR TO REPLACE AND REPAIR HIGHWAYS.

THE WYOMING DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION STATES THAT THEY DID NOT WORK CLOSELY WITH THE FIRM TO CALCULATE THEIR ESTIMATE.

 

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