Albany, NY – Senator Andrew Gounardes and Assemblymember Jo Anne Simon announced the passage of their bill (S6246/A6225) to enable the implementation of the first-in-the-nation Weigh-in-Motion (WIM) program to electronically ticket illegally overweight trucks on the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway (BQE). The bill passed the Senate with bipartisan support, passed the Assembly unanimously, and awaits Governor Hochul’s signature. Overweight trucks cause significant damage to the roadway – and to the triple cantilever in particular – and removing them will extend the useful life of the BQE.
The conventional enforcement method of taking a truck off the road and weighing it on a stationary scale is highly impractical and in the BQE corridor, virtually impossible. This state-of-the-art weigh-in-motion system will record the axle weights and gross weights of vehicles and will electronically issue violations to offending trucks. Regular calibration checks will ensure the WIM program will be implemented using the highest standards in the nation, making sure the system is accurate in its enforcement. WIM legislation was first passed in 2021, but this new bill was needed to ensure that calibration checks for this new system can be properly implemented. This program will also reduce the harmful carbon emissions these trucks produce and improve the air quality in the Black and brown communities that have been disproportionately impacted by this highway.
Assemblymember Jo Anne Simon said, “Illegally overweight trucks have done significant damage to the BQE triple cantilever, and the risk of a catastrophic event goes up every year we don’t take action. These massive illegal trucks have no place in New York. The recent highway collapse on I-95 is an example of the real destruction that trucks can cause on our roadways, and we cannot risk a disaster like that on the BQE. The WIM program will help extend the useful life of the roadway so that we can reimagine the BQE as a 21st century transportation corridor that reduces our reliance on polluting trucks and prioritizes climate justice. I urge the Governor to sign this bill into law right away so that the City DOT can start ticketing these trucks. Thanks to my partner Senator Andrew Gounardes and to Council Member Lincoln Restler for getting the home rule message from the City.”
Senator Andrew Gounardes said, “I applaud my colleagues in the State legislature for passing our bill to prolong the lives of our roadways and decrease harmful carbon emissions by implementing weigh-in-motion technology in New York City," said State Senator Andrew Gounardes. "Automated enforcement against overweight trucks is critical for the safety and health of New Yorkers all across the city, and I look forward to seeing the Governor sign this bill into law."
Council Member Lincoln Restler said, “I am pleased that the New York State legislature has passed Assemblymember Simon and State Senator Gounardes’ legislation that will finally enable the Department of Transportation to automatically impose fines against overweight trucks on the BQE. I want to also thank my colleagues in the City Council for unanimously approving our home rule message to facilitate passage of this legislation in Albany. Removing overweight trucks from the triple cantilever via Weigh in Motion technology is critical to extending the cantilever’s lifespan and after frustrating delays we hope to see it finally implemented in the months ahead.”