State transportation department bans hazmat vehicles during daytime in Boston

The state transportation department on Friday banned trucks carrying hazardous materials through Boston between 6 a.m. and 8 p.m., a decision Mayor Thomas M. Menino called a triumph for city residents.

“Today’s announcement is a victory for the people of Boston,” Menino said in a statement. “We have worked hard to prevent hazmat vehicles without a destination in the City from using our local streets as a cut-through for traveling between northern and southern points in the Commonwealth.”

The decision follows a lengthy review process of travel procedures for hazardous materials through the city, the mayor’s office said.

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Over 100 hearings were held with hazmat providers in 2005 about travel through Boston, according to Menino’s office. A year later, hazmat vehicles were banned during daytime hours if the drivers were not delivering or picking up materials in Boston, the mayor’s office said.

But after appeals from the Department of Transportation and trucking companies, Menino’s office said, the federal government overturned that decision in 2009. An institute with experience in the field of hazmat transport was hired to review the ban and four more public hearings were held, according to the mayor’s office.

Menino’s office said the transportation department is also considering a recommendation to extend the ban through the evening.

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