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Rep.Landgraf, Brooks

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LANDGRAF BRIDGE STRIKES BILL MOVES TO FULL HOUSE  print page

by: Rep. Landgraf, Brooks
03/21/2019

AUSTIN State Representative Brooks Landgraf's (Odessa) legislation aimed at reducing the number of overpass strikes due to over-height semi-trucks by holding those drivers or their employers liable for the costly damage has been voted out of the House Transportation Committee and now moves to the full House for a vote.

The House Transportation Committee, of which Landgraf is vice chair, unanimously passed House Bill 799. HB 799, authored by Landgraf, seeks to hold the owner of the vehicle strictly liable for any damage to a bridge or overpass caused by the height of the vehicle. The driver of the over-height vehicle could also be charged with a misdemeanor crime.

"These bridge strikes compromise highway safety, cause traffic congestion and cost taxpayers up to millions of dollars in repairs," Landgraf said. "I'm determined to reduce the number of these collisions and hold the vehicle owners strictly liable for the cost of the repairs so that taxpayers aren't stuck footing the bill."

According to the Texas Department of Transportation, in 2018, there were at least 82 overpass strikes across the state. Meanwhile, over the five previous years from 2013 and 2017, there averaged just 31 overpass strikes a year.

The 86th Texas legislative session is underway and will run through May 27, 2019.

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