Length Limit Set on Laurelwood Road
For Immediate Release Tuesday, September 04, 2012
Earlier today, Washington County's Board of Commissioners authorized a 50-foot length limit on a narrow and winding section of Laurelwood Road between Bald Peak Road and Parmele Road, near the community of Laurelwood (see map). Signs identifying this restriction will be installed soon. Trucks exceeding 50 feet in length must use an alternate route or apply for an oversize truck permit.
On some sharp corners, trucks longer than 50 feet track into the oncoming traffic lane. When an oncoming vehicle encounters a truck at one of these corners, the oncoming vehicle is at risk of being pushed off the roadway, possibly down a steep bank (see photo from Washington County Sheriff's Office). Log trucks are exempt from the length limit because their design allows them to maneuver through tight corners without tracking into the oncoming lane.
Laurelwood Road is an east-west route over the Chehalem Mountains between the communities of Midway on the east and Gaston on the west. According to 2011 traffic counts, over 1,100 vehicles use Laurelwood Road each day; about 9 percent of the traffic is trucks. It is estimated the length limit will reduce the number of trucks using this route by about 10 percent.
Washington County’s Motor Carrier Reference Map identifies countywide through-truck routes which avoid truck restrictions.
Washington County is committed to planning, building and maintaining the best transportation system, ensuring the safety of all roadway users, and to operating the county roadway system in a cost-effective and environmentally responsible manner.
Media Contact:Stephen Roberts, Communications Coordinator