House of Representatives
Office of Program Research
This analysis was prepared by non-partisan legislative staff for the use of legislative members in their deliberations. This analysis is not a part of the legislation nor does it constitute a statement of legislative intent.
Brief Description: Concerning vehicle weight limits for the movement of agricultural commodities.
Sponsors: Senate Committee on Transportation (originally sponsored by Senators King, Warnick, Bailey, Schoesler, Hasegawa, Conway, Takko, Nelson, Padden, Benton, Ericksen, Honeyford, Parlette and Hewitt).
Hearing Date: 2/22/16
Staff: Jerry Long (786-7306).
No vehicle or combination of vehicles shall operate upon the public highways of this state with a gross load on any single axle in excess of 20,000 pounds, or upon any group of axles in excess of that designated in statute, except that two consecutive sets of tandem axles may carry a gross load of 34,000 pounds each, if the overall distance between the first and last axles of such consecutive sets of tandem axles is 36 feet or more.
Trucks are registered based on a declared gross vehicle weight with a graduated fee schedule in statute. Overweight permits are also available based on a graduated fee schedule.
The Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) may issue special permits under certain conditions for vehicles to exceed the maximum load limits on any public highway for which the WSDOT has jurisdiction.
The board of county commissioners of each county may, by resolution, limit or prohibit classes or types of vehicles on any county road or bridge and may limit the weight of vehicles which may travel on a county road or bridge. Any resolution must be effective for a definite period of time, which must be stated in the resolution.
Summary of Bill:
A vehicle or combination of vehicles carrying an agricultural commodity may exceed the weight limits by up to 2,000 pounds when operating upon the public highways of this state that are not part of the federal-aid interstate system. A special permit is not required for a vehicle or combination of vehicles that exceeds the weight limits by up to 2,000 pounds.
The bill establishes a definition for an "agricultural commodity" which means crops produced on a farm or ranch during harvest season and transported from the farm or ranch to the processing location.
A vehicle or combination of vehicles carrying an agricultural commodity may exceed the weight limits established by a board of county commissioners by up to 2,000 pounds when operating upon the public highways of the state.
The exemption provided does not allow a vehicle or combination of vehicles to exceed any posted weight limit for a bridge.
Fiscal Note: Available.
Effective Date: The bill takes effect 90 days after adjournment of the session in which the bill is passed.