Abinanti Demands DOT Act to Keep Trucks Off Parkways

Tarrytown, NY – “Truck after truck hits bridge after bridge and the state Department of Transportation (DOT) continues its failed efforts to stop trucks with road signs they don’t see,” said Assemblyman Tom Abinanti today as he again called for the state DOT to put up height barriers on state parkways.

Today Abinanti again wrote to DOT Acting Commissioner Paul Karas after Abinanti learned of a bridge strike on Thursday in Westchester County and a similar incident in Long Island at the same overpass hit by a coach bus full of students two months ago.

Assemblyman Abinanti (D-Greenburgh/Mt. Pleasant) has introduced two bills this session (A8008 and A10747) designed to keep trucks off of Westchester and all state parkways respectively. The legislation would require the state DOT to study parkway entrances and install physical height barriers at the entrances where trucks are most likely to enter the parkways.

Last year, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo vetoed a similar bill passed by the Legislature. In his veto message, the Governor argued that the DOT had conducted an assessment and was taking sufficient measures.

“Public officials in Westchester and beyond are frustrated of constantly hearing about bridge strikes by oversized commercial vehicles illegally accessing our parkways,” said Assemblyman Abinanti. “Must we wait for someone to get killed before the State takes common sense, effective action?”

Abinanti noted that similar height barriers are already used to keep large and heavy vehicles out of parking lots and other low-ceiling structures and many have been installed at roadway entrances in the Boston area.

“Trucks, which are illegal on parkways, are a hazard not just to bridges but to passenger vehicles legally on the roads,” said Assemblyman Abinanti.