By ERIK SCHELZIG, Associated Press

NASHVILLE, TN (AP) - Tennessee is banning trucks longer than 30 feet from using a twisty stretch of U.S. Route 129 known as The Dragon.

The truck ban is welcome news to motorcyclists and sports car enthusiasts who flock to the mountain road famous for its 318 curves in 11 miles running along the western edge of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Ron Johnson is the owner of the Tail of the Dragon gift store near Robbinsville, North Carolina. He calls the decision by the Tennessee Department of Transportation long overdue.

Johnson says tractor-trailers pulling through tight turns can block both lanes of traffic and force cars and motorcycles off the road. While trucks have been banned from the North Carolina side for a few years, Tennessee resisted the change until now.

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