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tyler_mott85
04-03-2009, 09:46 PM
How to know when you need a DOT number:

If your GVWR for your truck and trailer combined is over 10,000lbs or 10,001+ you need a DOT number. This has nothing to do with the actual amount of weight that you are carrying. If your truck and trailer actually weighs over 10k lbs you must be DOT certified but if your truck and trailer is even rated to carry that amount of weight you must be certified as well. Here are some examples.

If you drive a 1/2 ton truck with a GVWR for the truck of 6000lbs (find this information on the drivers door) and pull a single axle trailer with a 3500lb axle you do NOT need a DOT number because your combined GVWR is only 9500 lbs.

If you drive a 1/2 ton truck with the same GVWR of 6000lbs and you pull a tandem axles trailer with two 3500lb axles you MUST have a DOT number. Your combined GVWR is now 13k lbs. Even if you do not load your truck to over 10k lbs! It is about the gross vehicle weight "rating", not the actual amount of weight on the truck.

This means that if you drive a 1 ton truck with a GVWR of 9500lbs if you pull a trailer with a GVWR of more than 500lbs you must have a DOT number. No exceptions. Just remember, it doesn't matter how much weight you are actually loaded with it is about how much weight your truck/trailer combo is rated for to determine if you need a DOT number.

What if I load my trailer and truck with more weight than the combined GVWR to get away from a DOT number?

So you want to load a 1/2 ton truck with a single axle trailer up to the hilt and pull around 15k pounds?

Big problems! If you get pulled over by a State Trooper and they want to weigh you they have individual scales that will go under each tire to weigh in. If you weigh even one pound over your GVWR you will have big fines and they may shut you down right then and there! Even further more your truck has a Gross weight rating for each axle. If one of those axles are over weight you are in trouble. Make sure you know how much your rig weighs!

What about my License Tags?

Your license plates are a little bit of a different beast. In Kansas, a standard truck plate is marked with 12M. This means that the truck/trailer can not weigh more than 12k lbs. But, if you drive that 1 ton truck with a GVWR of 9500lbs and pull a tandem axle trailer with two 7,000lb axles you would presumably have combined GVWR of 16,500lbs. You need a DOT number, obviously but as long as the weight of your truck, trailer and all of the load and occupants does not exceed the 12k lbs that your truck tag is rated for you do not need a different License Tag.

Remember this one thing about tags. The truck tag must cover the weight of the truck and the trailer combined. The trailer tag only has to cover the weight of the trailer. This is how it is in Kansas, anyway. Chime in if its different in your state.

Again, if a trooper weighs you and you're over your Tag's ratings you're sunk as well.

What else do you need to be DOT compliant?

In Kansas in order to be DOT compliant there is a HUGE list of criteria that must be met. I was in charge of making sure a company's trucks and trailers were compliant 5 or so years ago and it was a full time job!

Just some of the basics:

Every axle on your truck and trailer that touches the ground must have brakes. Triple axles trailer? All three axles must have brakes (This is not in every state)

Every trailer must be equipped with a break away cable box.

Further more if you get stopped by a Trooper you must be able to stop your rig from 10mph with just your trailer brakes from the controller in your cab. And within so many feet. He will also pull your brake away box and when you pull forward every tire that touches the ground must lock up and drag. Not a single one may roll!

You also have to have emergency triangles in the truck and a fire extinguisher "firmly" attached within reach of the driver. Not just rolling around behind the seat. It must be screwed to the floor! (This will give you a break on insurance, too, BTW)

Every driver that wishes to drive a DOT numbered truck must go through a DOT physical at a Dr's office and carry a DOT card with him at all times. This physical gets completed every 4 yrs (I believe)

If you have a DOT number it must be on your truck in a visible location AND your company's name must be visible and eligible.

Then you get into the lights: Any truck or trailer that is over 8 ft wide (i think thats the number) must have identification lights. These are the three red lights in the middle of the rear of the trailer or on the back of dually trucks. This is so cars don't try to drive "thru" your tail lights thinking your trailer or truck is just two motorcycles.

You must also have clearance lights at the widest points of your trailer and DOT approved reflective tape as necessary to comply.

AND THAT'S JUST THE BEGINNING!

Oh and make sure you loads are secure. If you drive an enclosed trailer you can't be picked on but if you pull an open trailer everything better be tied down. Unless you have 4 ft sides than you're ok (In Kansas). Say you have a fully open trailer and you have 80 bags of mulch spread across the flooring. You cannot just throw a tarp over it and go on with life. The trooper will not call that "secure" you must throw pallets or 2x4s and strap those things in place!

But make sure you tarp your debris or you'll get fined for littering. Both from the Trooper at the State level and when the City learns about it they will send you a fine in the mail too. (FYI)

When I worked for this company we also had to get certified by the City (Wichita, KS) to be a solid waste collector. This was for our clippings and what not. Had to pay a fee every year and get stickers on the trailer or truck we were putting our debris into. Also we had to have a bulk water transporter sticker through the city since our spray rigs were 300 gal tanks.

Again, this is mostly from KS so make sure you check your local regulations.

OH! And if you plan on doing work in another state to work you must have a DOT number for that state as well. This is why most big rigs have USDOT numbers which will cover them as they travel through other states. But if they stop to set up shop in a state they have to be DOT certified for that state as well. If you only do work in one state you only have to follow the laws at the state level. If you go to a different state you must comply with that states rules too. If you go all over the country you must follow the federal laws.

If your DOT certified truck is also your daily driver you must be in DOT compliance at all times. Even if you're pulling your RV to the lake. If your wife drives your truck to get groceries, legally, she is supposed to be DOT certified as well. Whether she's pulling a trailer or not, as well.


GOOD LUCK! and thanks for reading...

chime in if you know of anything else.

flatlander42
04-03-2009, 10:04 PM
WOW, great post! That took some time!

Thanks!

Don't forget the various amts of fuel you can carry!

Nathan

KS_Grasscutter
04-03-2009, 10:14 PM
Dude, THANK YOU for compiling all that information. I am looking at 3/4 ton dump trucks now, and this tells me everything I need to be legal once I get one. For a couple hundred dollars you can be legal and prevent thousands of dollars of fines.

Also, I either need a different trailer, or get a braking axle for mine, as it only has one braking axle.

1wezil
04-03-2009, 10:27 PM
:mad::nono::nono::mad:

93Chevy
04-03-2009, 11:04 PM
That's a good reminder for me to check on PA DOT laws. My truck is my daily driver, so I'll have to look up what needs to be done.

Thank you.

DuallyVette
04-03-2009, 11:07 PM
Based on what I've heard of DOT regulations here in North Carolina, your regulations seem to have been written by someone that was high on drugs.

Jason Rose
04-03-2009, 11:29 PM
DuallyVette, your statement sounds a lot like fact. Whoever came up with the "laws" around this state was definately smoking something. Half of them contradict each other, and then they don't enforce any of them 99% of the time, but if you happen to piss off the DOT guy when he's on the rag you had best hold on, because even if you have done everything you can to be compliant they will still find reasons to fine you.

I didn't know that about the tag on the truck, needing to be for the total weight of the rig. That explains why the previous owner of my 1 ton dually had it tagged at 20M, and I did the same. It's a 15,000 GVRW truck. Also didn't know the extingusher had to be mounted behind the seat. Mines just in the box it came in (loosely and easy to get out) and it's the closest thing in on the drivers side. There's no where to mount it back there anyway...

Most everything else I knew already, but I'm guilty of not being compliant just like everyone else.

Not sure what the deal is about the center marker lights (the little 3 light bar for the middle of the truck bed/trailer). My truck was DOT compliant when I bought it, and it dosn't have the light bar. Though the bed of the truck isn't a full 8'6" wide either, it's only 8'. That may be why it don't "need" the light bar. My trailer needs it, and I keep thinking I'm going to add one, but never have.

What i've learend. Keep the hell OFF of the highways with the lawn rig. You will NOT see me pulling my big lawn trailer with my dump truck on the highway. If I had the same truck and a trailer with 5 ATV's on it, and no business name, it would go by with no problems, but stick a business name on there and machines for work and they target you like a clay pigeon.

tyler_mott85
04-03-2009, 11:32 PM
About the fuel I don't know exactly but i've heard something lik 8 gal thrown around lawnsite in plastic tanks. However you can get those large tool-box type transfer tanks that are 50 or so gal and still be cool.

We were under the impression (my boss had a "friend") who said you could carry as much fuel as you wanted or could as long as it was in the 5 gal jugs. so when we needed fuel every week we would take 20 or 30 of those 5 gal jugs to the station and fill all of them up. Had cops look at us but not one said one. I didnt think it was kosher or at least not efficent but whatever.

DuallyVette, I agree that some of the regulations are a little goofy. I think some of the issues is that the DOT regulations are thru the DOT but the Tag rules are through the DMV. They still may both be at the state level but you know how gov't works.

Also remember that a lot of regulations are open for interpretation by the officer who may be doing an inspection on your rig.

There is a several hundred page book available with nothing but KDOT regulations. I dont know where to get them but I had one to research years ago.

Jason, the extinguisher can be up front on the hump too if you prefer just mounted securely somewhere easy to get to.

DuallyVette
04-03-2009, 11:58 PM
Our DOT regulations seem to make sense...everything adds up...no magic beans no secret formula. It probably can't last much longer, everything else that the government does seems to go against the flow of nature and rationality.

tyler_mott85
04-04-2009, 12:10 AM
What i've learend. Keep the hell OFF of the highways with the lawn rig. You will NOT see me pulling my big lawn trailer with my dump truck on the highway. If I had the same truck and a trailer with 5 ATV's on it, and no business name, it would go by with no problems, but stick a business name on there and machines for work and they target you like a clay pigeon.

I thought that was a good route to take too. To stay off of the highways. But Troopers can pull you over on any public street. I found it out the hard way several years ago. Just be careful and be legal! :dizzy:

Duffster
04-04-2009, 12:38 AM
There also seems to be popular misconception the you need a class A to pull a 10k+ trailer

tyler_mott85
04-04-2009, 08:24 AM
You do not need a CDL license until you get to a combined GVWR of 26,000lbs or something like that.

But that falls under the whole twisted issue of even if your GVWR is not 26000lbs but your rig weighs that much, you need a CDL to drive it.

I do not know the exact CDL weight off the top of my head so make sure you look it up.

AI Inc
04-04-2009, 08:38 AM
You do not need a CDL license until you get to a combined GVWR of 26,000lbs or something like that.

But that falls under the whole twisted issue of even if your GVWR is not 26000lbs but your rig weighs that much, you need a CDL to drive it.

I do not know the exact CDL weight off the top of my head so make sure you look it up.

You are correct 26k is the number.

lawnman_scott
04-04-2009, 10:32 AM
You do not need a CDL license until you get to a combined GVWR of 26,000lbs or something like that.

But that falls under the whole twisted issue of even if your GVWR is not 26000lbs but your rig weighs that much, you need a CDL to drive it.

I do not know the exact CDL weight off the top of my head so make sure you look it up.
federal law says anything over 26000 you need a cdl, but some states have tougher laws. I beleive MI and IN have laws that require a cdl with less weight than that.

Duffster
04-04-2009, 10:36 AM
federal law says anything over 26000 you need a cdl, but some states have tougher laws. I beleive MI and IN have laws that require a cdl with less weight than that.

Not a CDL but a Chauferrs license which is just a written test

lawnman_scott
04-04-2009, 10:57 AM
Not a CDL but a Chauferrs license which is just a written testwhere do they still have chauferrs licenses? I thought those went away when they started the cdl.

Duffster
04-04-2009, 11:01 AM
where do they still have chauferrs licenses? I thought those went away when they started the cdl.

Only ones I know of is MI and MO, there could be more, Iowa's book says there is but a DOT guy I talked to said there isn'tone anymore

I don't know of any states that require a CDL for anything lower than 26k since the deffinition of the CDL is pretty much defined by the FED's

MileHigh
04-04-2009, 05:02 PM
How to know when you need a DOT number:

If your GVWR for your truck and trailer combined is over 10,000lbs or 10,001+ you need a DOT number. This has nothing to do with the actual amount of weight that you are carrying. If your truck and trailer actually weighs over 10k lbs you must be DOT certified but if your truck and trailer is even rated to carry that amount of weight you must be certified as well. Here are some examples.

If you drive a 1/2 ton truck with a GVWR for the truck of 6000lbs (find this information on the drivers door) and pull a single axle trailer with a 3500lb axle you do NOT need a DOT number because your combined GVWR is only 9500 lbs.

If you drive a 1/2 ton truck with the same GVWR of 6000lbs and you pull a tandem axles trailer with two 3500lb axles you MUST have a DOT number. Your combined GVWR is now 13k lbs. Even if you do not load your truck to over 10k lbs! It is about the gross vehicle weight "rating", not the actual amount of weight on the truck.

This means that if you drive a 1 ton truck with a GVWR of 9500lbs if you pull a trailer with a GVWR of more than 500lbs you must have a DOT number. No exceptions. Just remember, it doesn't matter how much weight you are actually loaded with it is about how much weight your truck/trailer combo is rated for to determine if you need a DOT number.

What if I load my trailer and truck with more weight than the combined GVWR to get away from a DOT number?

So you want to load a 1/2 ton truck with a single axle trailer up to the hilt and pull around 15k pounds?

Big problems! If you get pulled over by a State Trooper and they want to weigh you they have individual scales that will go under each tire to weigh in. If you weigh even one pound over your GVWR you will have big fines and they may shut you down right then and there! Even further more your truck has a Gross weight rating for each axle. If one of those axles are over weight you are in trouble. Make sure you know how much your rig weighs!

What about my License Tags?

Your license plates are a little bit of a different beast. In Kansas, a standard truck plate is marked with 12M. This means that the truck/trailer can not weigh more than 12k lbs. But, if you drive that 1 ton truck with a GVWR of 9500lbs and pull a tandem axle trailer with two 7,000lb axles you would presumably have combined GVWR of 16,500lbs. You need a DOT number, obviously but as long as the weight of your truck, trailer and all of the load and occupants does not exceed the 12k lbs that your truck tag is rated for you do not need a different License Tag.

Remember this one thing about tags. The truck tag must cover the weight of the truck and the trailer combined. The trailer tag only has to cover the weight of the trailer. This is how it is in Kansas, anyway. Chime in if its different in your state.

Again, if a trooper weighs you and you're over your Tag's ratings you're sunk as well.

What else do you need to be DOT compliant?

In Kansas in order to be DOT compliant there is a HUGE list of criteria that must be met. I was in charge of making sure a company's trucks and trailers were compliant 5 or so years ago and it was a full time job!

Just some of the basics:

Every axle on your truck and trailer that touches the ground must have brakes. Triple axles trailer? All three axles must have brakes (This is not in every state)

Every trailer must be equipped with a break away cable box.

Further more if you get stopped by a Trooper you must be able to stop your rig from 10mph with just your trailer brakes from the controller in your cab. And within so many feet. He will also pull your brake away box and when you pull forward every tire that touches the ground must lock up and drag. Not a single one may roll!

You also have to have emergency triangles in the truck and a fire extinguisher "firmly" attached within reach of the driver. Not just rolling around behind the seat. It must be screwed to the floor! (This will give you a break on insurance, too, BTW)

Every driver that wishes to drive a DOT numbered truck must go through a DOT physical at a Dr's office and carry a DOT card with him at all times. This physical gets completed every 4 yrs (I believe)

If you have a DOT number it must be on your truck in a visible location AND your company's name must be visible and eligible.

Then you get into the lights: Any truck or trailer that is over 8 ft wide (i think thats the number) must have identification lights. These are the three red lights in the middle of the rear of the trailer or on the back of dually trucks. This is so cars don't try to drive "thru" your tail lights thinking your trailer or truck is just two motorcycles.

You must also have clearance lights at the widest points of your trailer and DOT approved reflective tape as necessary to comply.

AND THAT'S JUST THE BEGINNING!

Oh and make sure you loads are secure. If you drive an enclosed trailer you can't be picked on but if you pull an open trailer everything better be tied down. Unless you have 4 ft sides than you're ok (In Kansas). Say you have a fully open trailer and you have 80 bags of mulch spread across the flooring. You cannot just throw a tarp over it and go on with life. The trooper will not call that "secure" you must throw pallets or 2x4s and strap those things in place!

But make sure you tarp your debris or you'll get fined for littering. Both from the Trooper at the State level and when the City learns about it they will send you a fine in the mail too. (FYI)

When I worked for this company we also had to get certified by the City (Wichita, KS) to be a solid waste collector. This was for our clippings and what not. Had to pay a fee every year and get stickers on the trailer or truck we were putting our debris into. Also we had to have a bulk water transporter sticker through the city since our spray rigs were 300 gal tanks.

Again, this is mostly from KS so make sure you check your local regulations.

OH! And if you plan on doing work in another state to work you must have a DOT number for that state as well. This is why most big rigs have USDOT numbers which will cover them as they travel through other states. But if they stop to set up shop in a state they have to be DOT certified for that state as well. If you only do work in one state you only have to follow the laws at the state level. If you go to a different state you must comply with that states rules too. If you go all over the country you must follow the federal laws.

If your DOT certified truck is also your daily driver you must be in DOT compliance at all times. Even if you're pulling your RV to the lake. If your wife drives your truck to get groceries, legally, she is supposed to be DOT certified as well. Whether she's pulling a trailer or not, as well.


GOOD LUCK! and thanks for reading...

chime in if you know of anything else.

good post...:drinkup:

many people don't realize these things.

GravelyGuy
04-04-2009, 09:45 PM
Pat on your back if you follow all of the regulations ALL the time. I don't think I've seen anyone around here totally legal:rolleyes:

Jason Rose
04-04-2009, 10:06 PM
I don't believe it's even possible to be 100% legal. Even if you do everything you can, if you get stopped they are going to find something.

I know this is a "bad attitude", but if I had to secure everything to DOT standards to drive 4 blocks, I'd never get any work done. There's no feasable way for me to secure my equipment the way I have to load my trailer. I keep my trailer attached to the truck properly, I secure my loads with a mesh tarp, or straps for tree limbs, I keep all my lights in working order, I do my best to keep my trailer brakes working, but anyone that has electric brakes can vouch that it's nearly an impossible task to keep them working. I will continue to 'fly under the radar' and not get numbered. I've heard horror stories about guys that do get numbered and they constantly get harrassed by the DOT. Why punish those who have actually chosen to follow the rules? If and when I ever get pulled over, I know I have most of what I need, but I also know that reguardless of DOT numbers or not, I'll be getting fined for various things. Will have to cross that bridge when I come to it.

DuallyVette
04-04-2009, 10:30 PM
I looked up my state's DOT web site. DOT #'s are only required if your 10,ooo lb truck is used for interstate commerce (or hazardous chem, or 9+ paid passengers, or 16 free passangers) I live near the NC SC border, but I rarely leave the state.

So if you get the #'s...they start harassing you ?

Jason Rose
04-04-2009, 10:38 PM
So if you get the #'s...they start harassing you ?

That's just what I was told. Seems that the guys with the numbers are getting stopped on a regular basis, but us with the same trucks and NO numbers never hav a problem.

I know another lawn guy, he has DOT numbers on his truck, and it's certianly large enough to need numbers. I was talking to him, mentioned that he was "legal" with his DOT numbers, he laughed... The numbers came with the truck, he just never took them off. I said, "damn, why didn't I think of that" :laugh: But I'm sure I'd rather not get cought with someone elses numbers, and Like I said, it seems that the guys with numbers are getting stopped 100:1 over the guys with no numbers. The guy I bought my 1 ton dually from said they get stopped (his employees) frequently, and get tickets for horribly stupid things like not having a 3 gallon potted shrub secured in the bed of the truck.

If I was getting a ticket for that, I would have grabbed it, put it in the passenger seat and put it's seatbelt on. I'm sure that would just piss the inspector off, but come on, leave honest people alone and go do something like catch some drug smugglers or a meth house.

tyler_mott85
04-04-2009, 10:51 PM
Well I think some of the reason for the companies with lettering get stopped so much is because a truck with lettering and signage is so much more noticeable to an officer. After all, that is the point of graphics on your truck, right?

DOT numbers only apply to business applications anyway. So for a trooper to see a truck pulling a large enclosed trailer down the highway with no signs or equipment I really think that they won't pull them over with the "assumption" that they are a commercial operator. They could just be a big family taking their Modified to the track. There are bigger fish to fry, after all. So if you're pulling an open trailer full of equipment it's a lot easier for an officer to assume that you are a commercial operator.

Two dead give aways for an officer that you are a commercial operator:
Signs and Equipment. If they see one or both its a big give away.

No equipment and no signs visible and they can't really assume that you're a commercial operator.

I know what you mean about the whole tying things down to drive 5 minutes. It is frustrating and I never follow the rules 100% of the time either.


Everybody with trailers remember that the brakes on your trailers are NOT self-adjustable like your truck brakes. You have to actually get down on your back with a Brake Spoon and adjust them every once in a while. That lil bit of info will screw ya if you're not aware of it and you get stopped for an inspection.

And another bit of information. The state of Kansas is about to pass a new bill that a police officer can pull over a vehicle for no seat-belts with no other reason. They used to not be able to pull you over for no seat-belt unless there was another infraction. Not anymore! Save yourself $60!

MileHigh
04-04-2009, 11:01 PM
What's the big deal with people not wanting to get USDOT numbers?

It's one small application you fill out, then mail out/fax out, they give you dot numbers within a week, and it's FREE!!

DuallyVette
04-04-2009, 11:26 PM
What's the big deal with people not wanting to get USDOT numbers?

It's one small application you fill out, then mail out/fax out, they give you dot numbers within a week, and it's FREE!!


I always thought the the USDOT #'s were for interstate commerce. ( NCDMV says I'm right...but I could get popped when I go to an equipment dealer in SC). I never gave it any thought before. I guess I'll get some #'s

PerfectEarth
04-05-2009, 12:09 AM
Pat on your back if you follow all of the regulations ALL the time. I don't think I've seen anyone around here totally legal:rolleyes:

I'll give myself a pat. I'm probably as compliant as you'll get. I have no worries about getting pulled over.

joshco84
04-05-2009, 02:38 AM
Tyler i am not questioning you at all, and you sound very knowledgable on the subject. But dont you have to gross 12,000 to be required dot numbers in kansas?? I will admit i have not been through the appropriate channels yet, but just from hearsay the 12,000 number is what everyone i know goes off of. Even a half ton ford with a single 3500 pound axle goes over 12 doesnt it?

Like i said, not pushing buttons, just comparing what i have known to be true.

tyler_mott85
04-05-2009, 12:06 PM
It's 10,001 lbs and over.

This is why a lot of the newer 1 ton trucks have a GVWR from the manufacturer of 10,000 or really close. It's the manufacturers way of being competitive and giving the customer "more" without creating an issue for just the truck itself to have a DOT number for a commercial operator.

I do not know the GVWR for a 1/2 ton ford but I know that the newer 1/2 tons are a lot heavier in their GVWR than older 90's trucks.

My 93 1/2 chevy has a GVWR of right around 5200. But it's empty weight is 4240. I bet a lot of the newer trucks empty weights are closer to 6,000. Check the drivers side door. There's a sticker that shows all of you GVWR information. Just take that and add on the GVWR of the trailer you want to pull and there ya go. You may be right on the newer 1/2 ton fords tho.

DuallyVette, USDOT numbers are for interstate commerce only. However, your local State DOT requires numbers as well. This is for any commerce within the state.

And yes, everyone, it is free to get your numbers! There are a lot of sites that want $75 to register for you but they're just trying to steal from you.

If you have any questions call your local Sheriff or State Trooper HQ's and ask them for the internet link for the information for your state.

stroker51
04-05-2009, 07:44 PM
Great thread. Although around my neck of the woods I would bet money that numbers will keep you from getting stopped. I've got my 96 3/4 ton and 96 1 ton lettered up, and have yet to be stopped. I was in my 3/4 last summer with the mow trailer on heading home for the day, and a motor carrier inspector, one of the ones in the white chevy pickup, turned the corner right next to me, eyeballed my truck all the way to the DOT numbers on the bed, then turned his head and kept going. My buddy got stopped last summer and the first thing the dumb a$$ asked him was for his DOT number and GVW, my buddy was like, "I dont know, its on the side of the truck" The officer hadn't bothered looking long enough before he stopped him to see the lettering. Most everybody I know that looks legit hasn't been stopped....yet. Unless they are running a tandem dump truck. The guys who dont look legit get stopped. It's crazy how where you are changes what you are told about some things though, like tying down stuff, when my buddy got stopped, the officer said the way we load our trailers, basically "stacking" everything on, w/b on front, stander in middle and z on the back, that all we had to tie down was the Z......Another former cop in town that mows got stopped by a trooper, was told to get numbers and it probably wouldn't happen again, and that he wasn't even worried about what was or wasn't tied down......

qualitylawnpro
04-05-2009, 08:52 PM
Go to dot.gov this site will help you get your free dot numbers!

Jason Rose
04-05-2009, 10:53 PM
Talking about looking legit and not getting stopped, I was eating at a fast food restruat one day and watched a motor carrier inspector (said so right on the truck) roll through the parking lot, then around onto the road and right by my rig parked on the street, very slowly. I'd bet money he was just checking for things like the hitch set-up and such. Of course I was inside, but the guy was satisified enough I guess because he rolled on to the stop, made his turn and rode off into the sunset never to be seen again. My guess is that if my rig looked like it wasn't "road worthy" he would have waited there for me to come out.

Duffster
04-05-2009, 10:55 PM
Knowbody has mentioed that you need to keep a log book:hammerhead:

MileHigh
04-05-2009, 11:15 PM
I always thought the the USDOT #'s were for interstate commerce. ( NCDMV says I'm right...but I could get popped when I go to an equipment dealer in SC). I never gave it any thought before. I guess I'll get some #'s

Intrastate and Interstate.

Johnagain
04-05-2009, 11:29 PM
I have a question that nobody has given me the same answer too and thought some here might give me an answer. I have always heard that if you are diabetic then you can't get a CDL. Is this true? If this is true then can you pass the medical test to get DOT #'s. If you can't get DOT #'s then how can you get legal. If you can't get legal then must you give up your business (if solo) or do you have to hire a driver?
I do know that I don't need a CDL unless weight is over 26K. But would need DOT #'s when over 10k in Florida. I do understand the differences between the CDL and DOT but I'm more concerned about the medical aspect.

DuallyVette
04-05-2009, 11:31 PM
Intrastate and Interstate.

On ther NC DMV website...It said INTERSTATE ONLY. #'s are required if you hauled hazardous materials, or 9 passangers for a fee, or 16 passangers free (church or school bus)INTRASTATE..

And after we settle DOT #'s...Let's discuss CDL's. I pull a gooseneck enclosed trailer that has 2 -7k axles ( I hate 3k axles and 15 inch tires) with a dually. I have a class A (use to be chauffers) license. I ask NCDMV if I needed a CDL. She said that she wouldn't worry about it.

ProTouch Groundscapes
04-06-2009, 08:59 AM
heres a quick question for you guys. our 350 srw is rated at 11,500 gvw and we have a single axle trailer at 3K, so i would need dot numbers if it was used only for working?

now, we are going to get a 7 or 10K enclosed 20' trailer and were going to get it lettered, but none of the trucks are getting lettered. We will be using this trailer to haul our quads for camping and riding and such, will we get stopped b/c the truck is lettered and they believe we are doing work without dot numbers on the truck?

POPO4995
04-06-2009, 09:15 AM
In Illinois, you must have proper license plates for the amount of weight you have. You only need a DOT # if you are crossing any state line.

Duffster
04-06-2009, 09:20 AM
On ther NC DMV website...It said INTERSTATE ONLY. #'s are required if you hauled hazardous materials, or 9 passangers for a fee, or 16 passangers free (church or school bus)INTRASTATE..

And after we settle DOT #'s...Let's discuss CDL's. I pull a gooseneck enclosed trailer that has 2 -7k axles ( I hate 3k axles and 15 inch tires) with a dually. I have a class A (use to be chauffers) license. I ask NCDMV if I needed a CDL. She said that she wouldn't worry about it.

What is the GVWR of the dually?

If it is over 12k then you need a Class A to frive that combo

MileHigh
04-06-2009, 09:44 AM
It's as simple as this:

If your truck and trailer combined GVWR is rated over 10,001# you need USDOT number's...interstate, intrastate are just two different applications.

If your truck and trailer combined GVWR is rated over 26,000, you need a CDL license and USDOT numbers.

USDOT numbers are free, what's the big deal?

Duffster
04-06-2009, 09:48 AM
It's as simple as this:

If your truck and trailer combined GVWR is rated over 10,001# you need USDOT number's...interstate, intrastate are just two different applications.

If your truck and trailer combined GVWR is rated over 26,000, you need a CDL license and USDOT numbers.

USDOT numbers are free, what's the big deal?

The # is the easy part

It is the rest of the stuff that goes with it is the hard part

DuallyVette
04-06-2009, 05:15 PM
What is the GVWR of the dually?

If it is over 12k then you need a Class A to frive that combo

My Duallys have a GVWR of 11400 lbs, so I don't need a CDL.

93Chevy
04-06-2009, 05:26 PM
The DOT numbers are free, but what's the catch? There has to be something negative to DOT's otherwise, we'd all have the letters and this wouldn't be a thread.

GravelyNut
04-06-2009, 08:38 PM
My Duallys have a GVWR of 11400 lbs, so I don't need a CDL.

Your truck also has about a 22K GCWR which puts you under the CDL requirements. But if you hook a 14K trailer behind your truck that is loaded to 10K, you'll get a ticket for being overloaded if stopped.

And here's a hint for any of you who live near a weigh station or an Ag Inspection station. It is better to pull in than to blow by one. None of the ones outside Florida were open when I went by on Sunday returning from Ohio. Monday morning I hit the Florida state line and stopped at every one except one that was closed. Weighed at all but one that gave me a bypass lane (weighed 6 times). Saw several pickups and trailers in the lots getting written up for various things. While at an Ag Inspection Station on I-10 near I-75 I watched a pickup and trailer roll past. Stopped, asked what was in the trailer, and rolling again fast enought that I caught up with them within 2 miles. He was on the side of the road having a little talk with the man with the flashing blue lights on top. Bet the first question the FLA&CS officer asked was could he read and did he understand what "Trucks-Trailers
Pickups-Trailers
Rental Trucks " meant.

Duffster
04-06-2009, 08:50 PM
Your truck also has about a 22K GCWR which puts you under the CDL requirements. But if you hook a 14K trailer behind your truck that is loaded to 10K, you'll get a ticket for being overloaded if stopped.

And here's a hint for any of you who live near a weigh station or an Ag Inspection station. It is better to pull in than to blow by one. None of the ones outside Florida were open when I went by on Sunday returning from Ohio. Monday morning I hit the Florida state line and stopped at every one except one that was closed. Weighed at all but one that gave me a bypass lane (weighed 6 times). Saw several pickups and trailers in the lots getting written up for various things. While at an Ag Inspection Station on I-10 near I-75 I watched a pickup and trailer roll past. Stopped, asked what was in the trailer, and rolling again fast enought that I caught up with them within 2 miles. He was on the side of the road having a little talk with the man with the flashing blue lights on top. Bet the first question the FLA&CS officer asked was could he read and did he understand what "Trucks-Trailers
Pickups-Trailers
Rental Trucks " meant.

I have always been that GCWR is not a legally enforcable rating but just a guide line by the manufacturer for the buyer

tyler_mott85
04-06-2009, 09:17 PM
Knowbody has mentioed that you need to keep a log book:hammerhead:



AH YES! I almost forgot!

When you become DOT certified you must keep a log book of hours worked. This is not about how many hours you drive it's about how many hours you are actually on the clock! You can't work more than a certain amount in a week or a certain amount in a day without a certain amount of time off.

This is the same regulations that 18-wheel drivers have to follow about running only so many hours at a time.

This can get tricky in the winter time!

I don't remember the specifics however. I "think" you can work for 12 hours then have 8 off but no more than 12 at a time? Not 100% sure tho.

This is why it's very important to get into this stuff! It is very very involved and deep and no matter what we think of it it's the law!

AND ANOTHER THING every trailer and truck must have an annual inspection by a certified mechanic. Make sure your trailers that are home-built have a VIN number. Go to your trooper's HQ's with your receipts of building it to get one of these.

Pro Touch, if your GVWR of your Truck or your Truck and Trailer Combination is over 10,000lbs you need a DOT number. Especially if it's used only for work. So if just your truck's GVWR is 11,500 you DO need a DOT number.

JPsDuramax
04-06-2009, 09:37 PM
Remember each state is different. In GA, you must have them for either Intrastate or Interstate, but not all states require them for Intrastate. As for log books, you only have to keep one if you do travel over 100 miles in a straight line (Its not miles driven, but radius "of how the bird flys").

Another thing is you are allowed to use magnets provided they meet the requirements for visability. Check out fmcsa.dot.gov for all the laws and rules.

Or you could always keep an extra grand or two in cash to help "smooth" out your inspections:laugh:

Duffster
04-06-2009, 10:11 PM
As for log books, you only have to keep one if you do travel over 100 miles in a straight line (Its not miles driven, but radius "of how the bird flys").

There is more to it than just the 100 miles though

Drivers must work from base(shop) and punch a time clock

Either way you pretty much have to log your hours worked

JPsDuramax
04-06-2009, 10:21 PM
Very true...I was just on the DOT site and the rules for log books said "new/updated". Leave it to the feds to change things so often that its almost impossible to keep up. Thanks for the correction. I'll just keep doing my best to stay legal. At least, I won't be in wilful violation.

farmboy1285
04-07-2009, 12:04 AM
Okay so quick and somewhat stupid question, do all the rules apply if your truck is only being used for personal use. For example me and my dad are think about buying a used skid steer, So.... would we need to get dot numbers??? Because if we get one the only time it will leave our farm is to get serviced and for me it makes sense to just hope you dont get pulled over than get dot numbers and just through the government hoops, especially sense we dont even have a trailer big enough to haul a skid steer yet.

Duffster
04-07-2009, 12:18 AM
Okay so quick and somewhat stupid question, do all the rules apply if your truck is only being used for personal use. For example me and my dad are think about buying a used skid steer, So.... would we need to get dot numbers??? Because if we get one the only time it will leave our farm is to get serviced and for me it makes sense to just hope you dont get pulled over than get dot numbers and just through the government hoops, especially sense we dont even have a trailer big enough to haul a skid steer yet.

Do you farm for money?

I am not sure but dont think there is any provisions for farm use not needing one

If it will only leave the farm for sevice it would be cheaper to have it trucked by the dealer

stuvecorp
04-07-2009, 01:14 AM
Duffster, good one on the log book. The hard part is every state seems to enforce/interpret things differently. It's one big mess and I heard rumbling it will get worse.

I saw a road side scale here in Wisconsin that wanted trucks over four tons to pull through.:dizzy:

JPsDuramax
04-07-2009, 05:58 AM
Okay so quick and somewhat stupid question, do all the rules apply if your truck is only being used for personal use. For example me and my dad are think about buying a used skid steer, So.... would we need to get dot numbers??? Because if we get one the only time it will leave our farm is to get serviced and for me it makes sense to just hope you dont get pulled over than get dot numbers and just through the government hoops, especially sense we dont even have a trailer big enough to haul a skid steer yet.

Farmers are usually exempt provided they do not exceed 100 miles in radius. That said, I do not know how you would prove that to the "all-knowing" DOT officer. Check the DOT website for a sure answer...They surprise everyone all the time with new laws and regulations.

stuvecorp
04-07-2009, 10:53 AM
Farmers are usually exempt provided they do not exceed 100 miles in radius. That said, I do not know how you would prove that to the "all-knowing" DOT officer. Check the DOT website for a sure answer...They surprise everyone all the time with new laws and regulations.

I don't think there is anybody that gets an exception, as long as you are engaged in 'for profit' activities.

1wezil
04-07-2009, 11:01 AM
I don't think there is anybody that gets an exception, as long as you are engaged in 'for profit' activities.

Farmers do have some exceptions like I do know they do not license on farm truck that go from the farm to the field and back to the farm . The best thing is the check on it .

Duffster
04-07-2009, 04:59 PM
There are some excemptions from CDL but not any that I know of from USDOT# & Med cards & such

terrypiper
04-11-2009, 09:17 PM
tyler
you started a great thread here. dot is going crazy in topeka, its like they dont have anything better to do with their time. we have an american ship captain being held hostage and oh hey there goes another lawn service lets stop them and see how far we can get into their pockets. sorry kind of got off a little bit there. anyways all of you in kansas and everywhere else for that matter be aware of what has been written in this thread.

BlackCloudDiesel
04-12-2009, 01:50 PM
Everything seems to be correct here, except for needing a Medical Card for driving a truck with a DOT number, at least in state. That is not correct. You only need a Medical card if you drive a truck/trailer with a combined GVWR of over 26,001lbs. You don't need a Medical Card to drive an F-350 with a 8k trailer behind it. Not sure about if your going over state lines with that, but in state I know for a fact you dont. One of my best friends is a Wisconsin State Trooper so I usually am in the loop as far as the DOT laws go.

PlatinumLandCon
04-12-2009, 03:34 PM
Sticky this!

Bru75
04-12-2009, 04:27 PM
Go to www.fmcsa.dot.gov . Click on "Registration & assistance, U.S. dot#", on the next page click on "step by step registration guide". Answer a bunch of questions and it will tell you if the numbers are needed.

terrypiper
04-12-2009, 05:03 PM
Everything seems to be correct here, except for needing a Medical Card for driving a truck with a DOT number, at least in state. That is not correct. You only need a Medical card if you drive a truck/trailer with a combined GVWR of over 26,001lbs. You don't need a Medical Card to drive an F-350 with a 8k trailer behind it. Not sure about if your going over state lines with that, but in state I know for a fact you dont. One of my best friends is a Wisconsin State Trooper so I usually am in the loop as far as the DOT laws go.

the medical card thing must differ from state to state, here in kansas if your vehicle must be dot certified you have to have a medical card. i drive a school bus to suppliment my income in the winter and have to have one anyways.

BlackCloudDiesel
04-14-2009, 01:03 AM
the medical card thing must differ from state to state, here in kansas if your vehicle must be dot certified you have to have a medical card. i drive a school bus to suppliment my income in the winter and have to have one anyways.

Right, but you driving a school bus requires you to carry a CDL- at least if your bus holds more then 15pax it does. Here I don't think a truck has to be DOT certified, as long as you don't need a CDL to drive it. My F-350's all carry DOT numbers, but don't go through DOT certification. The only time they have ever had to be looked at and DOT "certified" was when a trooper nailed one and gave an inspection. I didn't have to carry a sticker or anything, the mechanic just had to sign the papers the officer gave to me the day eariler.

GravelyNut
04-14-2009, 08:11 AM
Duffster, good one on the log book. The hard part is every state seems to enforce/interpret things differently. It's one big mess and I heard rumbling it will get worse.

I saw a road side scale here in Wisconsin that wanted trucks over four tons to pull through.:dizzy:
Was that empty or loaded weights? Some states have lower speed limits for trucks that weigh >4 ton empty. And Everglades National Park has some sections of roads that have lower limits for trucks that have a GVWR of greater than 10K. A 3500 gets past the first but fails on the second.