Posted On: March 12, 2009 by Steven J. Malman

Illinois Lawmakers Want to Raise Semi-Trailer Truck Speed Limit to 65mph

Lawmakers in Illinois are pushing to increase the semi-trailer truck speed limit to 65 mph on non-urban roads. This is their fourth attempt to up the current semi-truck speed limit to 55 mph. The first three attempts were vetoed by then-Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich.

In the Illinois House of Representatives, Representative David Reiss is sponsoring House Bill 3956. The bill, if it becomes law, would not affect Cook County or the five “collar” counties (DuPage County, Will County, Lake County, McHenry County, and Kane County) around it. It also wouldn’t affect interstates that have lower speed requirements, including I-74, which runs through Peoria. In the Illinois Senate, Senator John Sullivan is pushing a similar proposal with Senate Bill 1467.

Proponents of the new speed limit say they believe that allowing large trucks to move at the same rate as the rest of the vehicles on the road could decrease the number of Illinois truck accidents. Cars, motorcycles, and SUV’s would be less likely to weave around trucks, trucks would more easily be able to get around other vehicles, and traffic jams might occur less often.

A uniform speed limit could also benefit the trucking industry. For example, Mid-West Truckers Executive Vice President Don Schaefer says that under the current 55mph speed limit, semi-truckers can’t legally make a full round trip between Chicago and St. Louis in one workday. A 65-mph speed limit would make this possible.

Also, those advocating for a higher speed limit are quick to point out that many truckers tend to break the current speed limit, so why not raise it altogether. That said, opponents of raising the current trucker speed limit say that a 65 mph speed limit will only compel these same truckers to increase their speed to up to 75 mph.

There is also the argument that a faster truck is a more dangerous truck that will have a harder time stopping in the event of an emergency or to avoid becoming part of an Illinois motor vehicle crash.

Semi-trucks and 18-wheeler trucks can weigh up to 80,000 pounds when fully loaded. Colliding with one of these trucks can be catastrophic for the victims involved.

New Statehouse push would raise some truck speed limits,, March 11, 2009

Legislators seek boost in truck speed, Chicago Tribune, March 6, 2009

Related Web Resources:
Illinois Department of Transportation

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

If you or someone you love was seriously injured in an Illinois semi-truck accident, contact Chicago Truck Accident Attorney Steve Malman today.

Bookmark and Share

Watch Our Videos

Recent Entries