Truck drivers could soon be facing $500 fines for entering certain highways in Connecticut.
The House of Representatives approved a bill Wednesday that proposes $500 fines for any truck or bus that accidentally strays onto the Merritt, and Wilbur Cross parkways in Connecticut, where large commercial vehicles are already banned.
The proposed bill would fine large commercial vehicles as a way to protect multiple historic bridge overpasses, many of which are too low for trucks to pass through, even though the Department of Transportation has yet to complete the legislation from 2017 ordering the installation of height-restriction warnings and signage along both parkways, reported the CT Post.
“As a driver on the Merritt Parkway on a daily basis, there is a truck, or a vehicle, blocking one of our historic bridges almost on a daily basis,” said Rep. David Rutigliano.
“This bill is necessary as we’ve seen over the last several years several instances in which trucks are on our state parkways,” added Rep. Steve Stafstrom. “Certainly any of us who drive from Fairfield County to the Capitol know it’s a regular occurrence to see trucks and trailers.”
Although the bill was approved in the House and will now move on to the Senate, those Representatives who voted against the legislation point out that it’s hard being a truck driver, and they deserve a break.
“There’s a lot to being a truck driver and mistakes do happen,” said Representative Jack Hennessy, a former truck driver, who pointed out that many truckers who end up on the parkway end up there by accident, and that $500 is a lot to pay for many truck drivers.
The proposed legislation would include box trucks and trailers of any kind. Currently, the fine for any large vehicle entering the Merritt and Wilbur Cross Parkways is $100.