Daily News Briefs, September 28, 2023

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NY Thruway Rate Increases Will Boost Capital Spending

Transport Topics contextualizes the recently approved New York State Thruway toll rate increases that will begin to take effect on January 1, 2024. “Thruway officials said there was a $470 million shortfall in the budget to pay for needed capital projects in the existing 2022-2026 Capital Program. The 2023 budget invests a total of $413 million to support its capital program, which is scheduled to invest $1.9 billion into projects through 2027.” Resurfacing is one of the most needed improvements: About 85 percent of the existing roadway base dates back to the 1950s. And more than 10 percent of the system’s 815 bridges will need to be replaced in the next 10 years, with hundreds more on the list for the decade after that. The article also provides a breakdown of the Thruway’s revenue and compares its per-mile rates to those of nearby toll systems.

Company and Agency Financial Issues And Reports Highway-Tunnel-Bridge Maintenance Infrastructure Investment Trends New York New York State Thruway Authority Toll Rate Changes


FMCSA And NTSB Endorse Requirement For Trucking Speed Limiters

“Governing” reports, “The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration [FMCSA] announced Monday, Sept. 25, it would begin developing a rule requiring trucks weighing more than 26,000 pounds to install and use devices limiting their speeds to a maximum of 68 miles per hour.” Such a rule was first recommended nearly 40 years ago by the National Transportation Safety Board. It’s endorsed by, among others, the Alliance for Driver Safety & Security, Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety, and the Truck Safety Coalition. But opponents, including the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association and the Montana Trucking Association, question the underlying rationale of limiting speeds for heavier vehicles. They argue that everyone on the road is safer when cars and trucks travel at more or less the same speeds. However, national data show that the danger of speeding trucks has spiked since motorists returned to the roads following the worst of the pandemic: The number of fatal truck crashes increased 17 percent between 2020 and 2021, and another 10 percent in 2022. “Governing” provides more crash data and reports on how efforts to require the speed control technology — it is installed in many trucks already — stalled through the years in Congress. Legislation that would block the proposed FMCSA rulemaking is on the table in both chambers, and a spending bill before the Republican-led House Appropriations subcommittee on transportation includes a ban on the requirement. The article notes that the American Trucking Associations (ATA) is withholding judgment until the proposed rule is drafted.

American Trucking Associations Highway-Tunnel-Bridge Safety (Includes COVID-19 Impacts) Issues of Law US Department of Transportation (USDOT) US National Transportation Safety Board


Carnegie Medal Awarded To Man Who Rescued PA Turnpike Driver From Burning Vehicle

CBS News Pittsburgh reports, 25-year-old Pennsylvania resident David Duffey is one of just 16 recent recipients of the prestigious Carnegie Medal, called “North America’s highest honor for civilian heroism.” Last October, Duffey witnessed a commercial truck crash on the Pennsylvania Turnpike and climbed into the vehicle’s cab to rescue the driver. Duffey and another man pulled the driver away from the crash site in time to avoid the explosion of the burning truck. Both Duffey and the driver received injuries, but neither was burned. Duffey was a college student and member of the National Guard at the time of the incident.

Highway-Tunnel-Bridge Safety (Includes COVID-19 Impacts) Pennsylvania Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission (PTC)


These are just some of the toll industry developments TRN is following.

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