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Trucker Weighs in on Triple Trailers

May 15, 1997

In "Are Drivers Facing a Triple Threat?" (May 13) on the trucking industry's attempt to gain permission for a demonstration project allowing triples (three trailer combinations) in San Bernardino County, east of Cajon Pass, you write, "Truckers say that despite the trucks' intimidating presence, triple trailers have proven to be among the safest vehicles on the road. . . ."

"Truckers" say no such thing. Trucking company management says this. Truckers, that is those, like myself, who actually drive them, are virtually unanimous in their opposition to triples.

A set of doubles (currently allowed in California) consists of four separate vehicles (tractor, first trailer, con-gear and second trailer) hooked together. Each of these connections is a pivot point at which a jackknife can occur. A set of triples adds another con-gear and trailer and two more pivot points, thereby increasing jackknife possibilities by 50%. Triples are inherently more dangerous than doubles.

Secondly, for every two sets of triples on the road, one decent-paying truck driving job is eliminated. This is, plainly and simply an attempt to increase profits, and safety be damned.

MIKE KVAMMEN

South Pasadena

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