NGVAmerica has been prioritising legislative effort across U.S. states for adoption of a weight provision over the past couple of years. In 2017, ten states adopted similar measures for natural gas trucks. 2018 has kicked off with a weight provision signed into law in New Jersey.
This bill provides an exception to the vehicle weight limits that apply to natural gas vehicles by allowing a vehicle primarily powered by natural gas “to exceed a vehicle weight limit, up to a maximum gross vehicle weight of 82,000 pounds, by an amount equal to the difference between the weight of the natural gas tank and fueling system and the weight of a comparable diesel tank and fueling system. This exception makes State law consistent with recently enacted provisions of federal law concerning weight limits for natural gas vehicles.” (SB 3616)
NGVAmerica reports there are now 24 U.S. states that have adopted the GVWR provision. More states are expected to follow throughout 2018.
The mass allowance, codified in federal law because of the FAST Act of 2015, is intended to address the fact that the fuel systems on natural gas trucks can add several thousand pounds to the weight of a truck. The allowance ensures that trucking firms that move to cleaner-burning natural gas can continue to pull a full load without having to reduce the weight of cargo.
For more information, contact Jeff Clarke at jclarke@ngvamerica.
Sources: Government of New Jersey and NGVAmerica