The Federal Bridge Gross Weight Formula is a mathematical formula used
by truck drivers and United States Department of Transportation (DOT)
officials to determine the appropriate maximum gross weight for a
commercial motor vehicle based on axle spacing. The formula is part of
federal weight and size regulations regarding interstate commercial
traffic (intrastate traffic is subject to state limits). The formula is
necessary to prevent heavy vehicles from damaging roads and bridges.
Commercial motor vehicles are most often tractor-trailers or buses, but
the formula is of most interest to truck drivers due to the heavy loads
their vehicles often carry. Early 20th century weight limits were
enacted to protect dirt and gravel roads from damage caused by the
solid wheels of heavy trucks. As time progressed, truck weight limits
focused primarily on gross weight limits (which had no prescribed
limits on length). By 1974, bridges received special protection from
increasing truck weight limits. The bridge formula law was enacted by
the U.S. Congress to limit the weight-to-length ratio of heavy trucks,
and to protect roads and bridges from the damage caused by the
concentrated weight of shorter trucks. The formula effectively lowers
the legal weight limit for shorter trucks, preventing them from causing
premature deterioration of bridges and highway infrastructure.
Compliance with the law is checked when vehicles pass through a weigh
station, often located at the borders between states.
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Today's selected anniversaries:
Forces of the House of Hanover defeated the Jacobites at the Battle of
Culloden, the final confrontation of the Jacobite Rising.
The first passenger line of what would become Indian Railways, the
state-owned railway company of India, opened between Bombay and Thane.
American Harriet Quimby became the first woman to fly across the
Swiss chemist Albert Hofmann discovered the psychedelic effects of the
semisynthetic drug LSD.
American financier and presidential adviser Bernard Baruch first
described the post-World War II tensions between the Soviet Union and
the United States as a "cold war".
In one of the deadliest shooting incidents in United States history, a
gunman killed 32 people and wounded over 20 more before committing
suicide at the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University in
Wiktionary's word of the day:
Of, or relating to, a word or phrase that names an object from a single
characteristic of it or of a closely related object
Wikiquote quote of the day:
What one man can do himself directly is but little. If however he can
stir up ten others to take up the task he has accomplished much.