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Rep. Gillespie’s bill to address trucks in the Gorge signed into law

On Monday, July 8, 2024, House Bill 593 became state law after receiving Governor Roy Cooper’s signature. Sponsored by Rep. Gillespie, HB593, titled “Various General Local Laws,” was initially called “Restrict Truck Length Through Cullasaja Gorge.”

Though the bill underwent changes in the Senate to include local government ordinances, the core language about Cullasaja Gorge remained intact.

HB593 tackles the significant safety issue in Macon County by increasing the penalties for violating vehicle restrictions on a particularly dangerous stretch of road. “The frequent incidents of large commercial trucks getting stuck on this road have created hazardous conditions for residents and first responders, while diverting essential resources from the community,” stated Rep. Gillespie. “HB593 aims to enhance road safety and ensure that our first responders can focus on serving and protecting our residents.”

According to G.S. 20-115.1, motor vehicle combinations of truck tractors and tandem trailers or semitrailers have length limitations. The Department of Transportation prohibits truck tractors with trailers longer than 30 feet on a segment of US Route 64 between State Road 1533 and NC Highway 106 in Macon County. HB593 enforces these restrictions with an additional civil penalty for violations on this stretch of US 64.

This law will significantly improve safety for trucks navigating the Gorge, reducing incidents and ensuring a safer environment for everyone.

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