Axle load and gross-vehicle weight characteristics of Mexican-origin commercial trucks processed through the U.S. Customs yard in the city of Laredo, Texas, are described in this report. Investigation of these characteristics particular to Mexican-origin trucks is directed by a Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT)-sponsored study entitled "Multi-Modal Planning and the U.S.-Mexico Free Trade Agreement" as a prerequisite to evaluating the potential damage to Texas highways posed by international trade traffic. Justifiable concern exists not just with the increasing volume of trade-related truck traffic, but also with the loads carried by Mexican-origin trucks. This study is facilitated by the installation of a weigh-in-motion (WIM) system at the preeminent Southwestern commercial truck port-of-entry (Laredo). Load summaries are presented on five basic truck classes (by axle count) and are based on the original Association of American State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) pavement damage relationships. Load characteristics of each basic class include: 1) load status (empty or loaded), 2) ESAL factors (ESALs per truck), and 3) distribution of axle loads and gross-vehicle weights. Histogram summaries are provided for axle-group loads and gross-vehicle weights with the greatest propensity for exceeding current U.S. legal load limits. Finally, damage implications are explored for the hypothetical integration of Mexican-origin commercial traffic, typified by that currently crossing at Laredo, and by that typified in a 1991 Mexican truck weight survey, into the current Texas traffic population.

  • Supplemental Notes:
    • Research study title: Multi-Modal Planning and the U.S.-Mexico Free Trade Agreement.
  • Corporate Authors:

    University of Texas, Austin

    Center for Transportation Research, 3208 Red River Street
    Austin, TX  United States  78705

    Texas Department of Transportation

    Research and Technology Transfer Office, P.O. Box 5051
    Austin, TX  United States  78763-5051

    Federal Highway Administration

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Authors:
    • Leidy, J P
    • Lee, C E
    • Harrison, R
  • Publication Date: 1995-3


  • English

Media Info

  • Features: Appendices; Figures; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 107 p.

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00720275
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: FHWA/TX-95+1319-1, Res Rept 1319-1, CTR 0-1319-1
  • Contract Numbers: Study 0-1319
  • Created Date: Apr 24 1996 12:00AM