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Old 09-03-2019, 05:31 PM   #21
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I've long had a suspicion that big rigs stopping cause far more wear than do big rigs rolling. Except for mudslides, SoCal does not have a lot of weather that breaks roads, so why are the surface streets all beat up? My guess is the medium duty (40') rigs stopping.

Regardless, it is clear that our tax money is not being used for road repair.
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Old 09-03-2019, 06:13 PM   #22
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I worked road construction for 3 summers as I was going to college and spent many an hour doing traffic control (as well as swinging a 16-18# sledgehammer, manhandling a 120# jackhammer, shoveling gravel and digging ditches) when I was on a road construction crew. I can tell you that when you flip that sign to 'STOP' and a big rig hits the brakes, you can feel the ground tremble - and if the trucker really hits them hard and the rig bounces a bit you can feel the ground jump, jump, jump right under your feet. Same if your work area happens to be near a traffic light and a red light brings a big rig to a quick stop.

No highway or road is perfectly smooth and level and 80k pounds bouncing over and on those imperfections - even small ones - hour after hour, day after day, will eventually begin to destroy the roadway. And that effect is magnified many fold when big rigs need to brake. I agree with CurtPutnam - far more wear and tear is caused by big rigs stopping than running down the road.
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Old 09-03-2019, 06:29 PM   #23
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No highway or road is perfectly smooth and level and 80k pounds bouncing over and on those imperfections - even small ones - hour after hour, day after day, will eventually begin to destroy the roadway. And that effect is magnified many fold when big rigs need to brake. I agree with CurtPutnam - far more wear and tear is caused by big rigs stopping than running down the road.

The freeway (I-5) where it runs next to the city I live in is paved with asphalt. The section was re-paved a couple of years ago to eliminate the "wagon ruts" that formed due to the continuous truck traffic to and from Canada. Endless streams of trucks hauling freight to/from the ports in Tacoma, Seattle, and Vancouver, BC.

These ruts were so deep that you had your choice of driving with your car leaning Left or leaning Right. When it rained the ruts became rivers and accidents were frequent unless people slowed to around 35 mph.

Go out to the same portion of freeway and the same lane(s) are developing the ruts again. Trucks are not overweight for the theoretical capacity of the road as they're weighed regularly at the nearby weigh stations. It's just the continuous heavy loads relentlessly pounding the asphalt down.

For a while some blamed it on studded tires but problem was, the tracks were wider than car tracks and any vehicle over 10k was prohibited from using studded tires. Today, studded tires are just about history but the ruts are still forming.

Once upon a time heavy loads were carried by trains. Now, the RR's have pulled up tracks and a zillion trucks are on the highways. All for the sake of speed and convenience of getting things to the market place (from china mostly) as quick as possible.

Saw an ad on TV once from a RR company. They showed how many trucks could be removed from the cross country highways and how much less fuel it took to transport the same tonnage if it was carried by rail.
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Old 09-03-2019, 07:00 PM   #24
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Diversions to public transport are the main diversion. Not bicycles.

The reason the bike lanes are empty, is because you take your life in your hands, riding on city streets.

https://www.cato.org/blog/highways-gas-tax-diversions
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Old 09-04-2019, 11:01 AM   #25
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Diversions to public transport are the main diversion. Not bicycles.

The reason the bike lanes are empty, is because you take your life in your hands, riding on city streets.

https://www.cato.org/blog/highways-gas-tax-diversions
Around the Seattle/Puget Sound area public transit gets their own money from bond issues. They then "retire" the bonds with money generated by motor vehicle registration fees. If you own a 4-5 year old vehicle you pay a fee calculated on the state's version of it's value which can be thousands of dollars more than what you could get if you sold it.

This boondoggle is called "Sound Transit". They're currently collecting fees from residents of the county I live in and the first light rail cars won't show up for 5 more years. Expected to expand further with $54 Billion in expenditures. Expected to get over $1 Billion from the Fed's in 2019 (from federal fuel tax fund no doubt).



Luckily I live outside the RTA district and always will. My vehicles are paid for and I don't like the idea I'd have to pay up to $500 per year in additional registration fees, especially to support a project that may not reach my city for another 20 years. Whole deal has become "Pay in Advance" with a "just trust us" clause.
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Old 09-04-2019, 12:23 PM   #26
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Why does the "gummint" have to build the roads? With today's tech a single transponder could log each vehicle on a roadway and assess a charge of r its use. That is how the NJ Parkway, Thruway, PA turnpike, etc. got built - via corps whether gummint owned or not. Political government is too inefficient to properly administer our roadways.

Of course, it would take the states 5 years to agree on transponder format - by which time the tech will have changed again.
I'm dead-set against that. Only because governments being governments, they will not rescind the per-gallon fuel tax. They will just add on an additional per-mile tax.

As Europe citizens how well the VAT worked out. It was supposed to replace 'sales' taxes, but in most places it just supplemented them.

All you have to do is make fuel tax revenue totally separate from the general funds, and untouchable by anyone other than the DOT of that particular state. In MO, we have fuel tax revenues paying for the "internetification" of rural areas, amongst other things.

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Old 09-04-2019, 12:42 PM   #27
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Cowracer - you are quite right with the assertion that taxes never go away. To make your solution work, each state's DOT agency would have to be constitutionally independent of the legislature. But then the legislature would find a new way to keep or increase any tax revenue lost to DOT.
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Old 09-04-2019, 12:49 PM   #28
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I can't believe Michigan isn't on the worst list.
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Old 09-04-2019, 01:23 PM   #29
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From the Ohio State line on the Indiana Turnpike to Shipshewana, Indiana you might as well be traveling on the moon.

And we PAY THEM to travel this road ?
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Old 09-04-2019, 01:32 PM   #30
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Highway

Try driving through Oklahoma city I have been on jeep trails that were smoother
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Old 09-04-2019, 02:06 PM   #31
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How about Democratic Peoples Republic of Illinois? That state is constitutionally incapable of paving a bridge approach properly. You always get a hefty "launch stroke" getting on, a bit of a free-fall getting off, and your fillings knocked loose by the expansion joints in between.

I call I-255 outside the STL the Illinois Suspension Proving Grounds.

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Old 09-04-2019, 02:27 PM   #32
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OMG - I complain all the time about how crappy Missouri's roads are!


If we're #3, I'm afraid to leave the state.
Also from Missoura...actually, we've towed or driven all over the country and I agree with the ratings on this list.

The northern states suffer from freeze and thaw, therefore potholes... California just suffers from neglect and other social priorities. Hawaii just doesn't have an excuse but they are bad on the big island when you get away from the population centers.

The worst situations, no matter what state you are in are the interstate bridge approaches! They will shake and rattle you and your camper. Every time I approach one, I lift off the fuel and coast a little, hoping for the best!
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Old 09-04-2019, 02:39 PM   #33
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Here in Fl we suffer from no base to build on mostly sand ... and how many visitors dragging there GIANT TT and 5th wheels with there HUGH 1 Tons here to vacation ... no worries you are all welcome
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Old 09-04-2019, 04:17 PM   #34
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Here in Fl we suffer from no base to build on mostly sand ... and how many visitors dragging there GIANT TT and 5th wheels with there HUGH 1 Tons here to vacation ... no worries you are all welcome
If I was you, I would tell them to take their no-good money and go elsewhere.

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Old 09-04-2019, 05:04 PM   #35
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It's a crying shame! When I was a kid, growing up in Orange County, California's roads were among the best in the nation. But that was a LOOOOONG time ago. I left in '68.
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Old 09-04-2019, 05:20 PM   #36
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Here's my take on why roads are so bad....
Back in my former life, I was part of a traffic committee in my county. The MD State Highway Admin guy talked about redecking a bridge on I-68. The work is now almost completed.... but the intial meeting I referred to was almost 15 YEARS AGO! That is why our roads and such are in bad shape - it takes the governments YEARS TO ACTUALLY GET THE JOBS DONE!
Thank you and end of rant.
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I do believe that the government could take a lesson from the railroads. A few years ago, a RR bridge in Minnesota City, MN was washed out by a flash flood. The railroad had the bridge replaced and operational in a little more than a week.
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Old 09-04-2019, 05:37 PM   #37
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I do believe that the government could take a lesson from the railroads. A few years ago, a RR bridge in Minnesota City, MN was washed out by a flash flood. The railroad had the bridge replaced and operational in a little more than a week.


Difference is the railroad loses profits from the bridge being out. Govt takes money from us whether or not we get anything in return.
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Old 09-04-2019, 05:48 PM   #38
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Those potholes in California will never be a problem for us. Just sayin.
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Old 09-04-2019, 06:21 PM   #39
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Right!! We no longer RV in the Republic of California due to the awful roads as well as the gazillion people.
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Old 09-04-2019, 07:31 PM   #40
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It's a crying shame! When I was a kid, growing up in Orange County, California's roads were among the best in the nation. But that was a LOOOOONG time ago. I left in '68.
Those CA social programs are expensive, money has to come from somewhere. After living and working in CA for 42 years I left in 2004 never to return. It's like another country to me now.
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