Seasonal weight restrictions take effect, trucks forced to slow down

Posted at 2:22 PM, Mar 07, 2019
and last updated 2019-03-08 08:12:03-05

KENT COUNTY, Mich. -- Spring weight restrictions go into effect this week or next week on many Michigan roads, so you may find yourself behind some slow moving trucks.

The restrictions are meant to minimize the damage done to Michigan's roads during the spring thaw.

Kent County weight restrictions go into effect Friday, March 8 at 6:00 a.m. Ottawa and Allegan County restrictions go into effect Monday, March 11 at 6:00 a.m. The Michigan Department of Transportation is putting their weight restrictions into effect statewide effective Monday morning.

When weight restrictions are in effect, trucks on posted roads have to carry lighter loads and travel at slower speeds. Some trucks will be forced to reduce speeds from 55 to 35 mph on county roads. All other drivers are being asked to give them space and be courteous on the road.

The Kent County Road Commission is taking action to restrict weigh and speed for heavier vehicles helping combat the problem.

Jerry Byrne with the road commission says these restrictions will minimize damage done during the spring thaw. He says when the 91 percent of county roads begin to thaw, water is forced to the surface which brings added pressure on roads. This pressure causes them to buckle and become more prone to potholes.

Commercial truck drivers in Kent Co. are being asked to reduce their speeds and weight baring capacities by 35 percent.

A truck driver tells FOX 17 that motorists in vehicles should realize that trucks in some areas are restricted to 35 mph, including M40 between Allegan and Gobles. So, don't get made at trucks going slow these next few weeks. They are just following the law.