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Constitutional Law Keyed to Maggs
Kassel v. Consolidated Freightways Corp. of Delaware
Citation:450 U.S. 662 (1981)
The State of Iowa by statute restricts the length of vehicles that may use its highways. Unlike all other States in the West and Midwest, Iowa generally prohibits the use of 65-foot doubles within its borders. Instead, most truck combinations are restricted to 55 feet in length. Doubles, mobile homes, trucks carrying vehicles such as tractors and other farm equipment, and singles hauling livestock, are permitted to be as long as 60 feet. Despite these restrictions, Iowa’s statute permits cities abutting the state line by local ordinance to adopt the length limitations of the adjoining State. Where a city has exercised this option, otherwise oversized trucks are permitted within the city limits and in nearby commercial zones. Because of Iowa’s statutory scheme, Consolidated cannot use its 65-foot doubles to move commodities through the State. Consolidated filed suit alleging that Iowa’s statutory scheme unconstitutionally burdens interstate commerce.
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