The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) revised its guidance (Q&A #14) concerning the scope of the weight allowance for natural gas trucks. The revised guidance is something that NGVAmerica had been expecting for many months now and had been urging the FHWA to issue.
Previous guidance had been unclear as to whether the 2,000 lb. weight allowance was discretionary or mandatory for state authorities. The lack of clarity had been a sticking point in moving forward with state guidance and also raised questions about how practical the exemption would be if only some states were required to recognize it. The revised guidance makes it clear that all state authorities must allow natural gas trucks operating on intestate roads to operate with the increased weight.
The guidance states, “every State must allow up to 2,000 additional pounds for any legal NGV traveling on the Interstate Highway System and within reasonable access to the Interstate. The additional weight allowance is the difference between (1) the weight of the vehicle attributable to the natural gas tank and fueling system carried by that vehicle, and (2) the weight of a comparable diesel tank and fueling system, up to a maximum GVW of 82,000 pounds.”