weigh master

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by ladibugg, Feb 9, 2003.

  1. ladibugg

    ladibugg LawnSite Member
    Posts: 79

    Have you ever been pulled over for a load check?

    Here in Mich. we have a weigh master riding around in Jeep Grands looking for violations.

    Have you ever been stopped for having reg. plates on a commercial truck?

    Our commercial plates are really costly. Most owner/operators ignore them.

    Do you carry all the safety equipment you are suppose to?

    We have a list of things, fire ext. triangles, cones , flags. etc.

    I see the Weigh Master driving around but have never seen him pull anyone over.
     
  2. paponte

    paponte LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,366

    Oh yeah, here in N.Y. we have to deal with DOT all the time. They will nail you for the stupidest thing. From blinkers, to under inflated tires. All my trucks are registered commercial because they are all over 5,000lbs. I am incorporated, so any fines are almost doubled!! I hope your just talking about pick up trucks not registered commercial. Because if it's a "true" commercial truck (over 5k lbs in N.Y), that's a NICE fine! I had a friend that let someone without a CDL drive one of his trucks. The fine was $5,000 for the driver, and $5,000 for the owner of the co.! :cry:
     
  3. Lanelle

    Lanelle LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,361

    We've been told by reliable sources to expect more DOT scrutiny of landscaper rigs. Many combine small trucks with large trailers and run over the weight limits with non-CDL drivers.
     
  4. ladibugg

    ladibugg LawnSite Member
    Posts: 79

    That's what I am talking about.
    There must be some areas that the small business guy is just looked past.

    Trucks positively being used for commercial work, they are overloaded and not being hassled. Why? I see 3 quarter ton trucks with personal plates hauling two ton of product and I see it everyday. There is no way DOT doesn't know this is a landscape business.

    Where is it OK to do this?
    Where is it that the legal guy gets his chops busted every time he takes his truck out?
    What is the DOT targeting?

    I want a really big truck, but I don't want to be in bed with the DOT.

    What do I need to do to make Mr. Weigh-master leave me alone?
     
  5. dougaustreim

    dougaustreim LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 488

    In my part of the world, the only way to get the DOT to leave you alone is to be in full compliance. The first stop they may cut you a little slack to get into compliance but after that watch out. On weight, no slack at all. We have many miles of road out here with a small population, thus cost per person for roads is high, so the state has a very tough attitude about overweight. In numerous cases, the overweight fines have far exceeded the value of the rig. Any number of overweight citations have been written that are in the thousands of dollars. $10,000 and up numerous times.

    Anymore everyone watches weight quite close.

    Any vehicle that is carrying more than 500 lbs for commerical use has to licensed as a commerical vehicle. They are watching this more closely all the time.

    Doug
    Austreim Landscaping
     
  6. kris

    kris LawnSite Bronze Member
    from nowhere
    Posts: 1,578

    What do you mean by not being in bed with DOT?

    Like Doug said ... be in full compliance. Why would you not want to run legal anyway? Besides the fines etc for not complying imagine if you happen to get in an accident and kill someone?
     
  7. paponte

    paponte LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,366

    DOT is the BIGGEST PITA. All of my trucks are in full complience, but they alwys have to bust schops for the stupidest things. If you are nice to them they usually let you slide. You have to keep up with EVERYTHING on the truck or it's not even worht having one. Also check for HUT permits in your area if you are hauling over certain weights.
     
  8. steveair

    steveair LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,073

    Hello,

    Recently in NJ they passed legislation that allows the state police to pull over commercial verhicles WITHOUT REASON.

    In other words, if you are driving a Commercial vehicle, they have the right to randomly pull you over and inspect.

    That is a major PITA!

    My biggest question here is what are you driving?

    you stated that something along the lines that commercial plates are expensive and that 'most' people ignore them............are you saying that because 'others' ignore the law you should too??????

    If you are driving a vehicle, whether a pickup, a mason dump, or a full size CDL vehicle without commercial plates, shame on you.

    I have no pity for people who get tickets for non commercial vehicles being used for business. PERIOD......

    Please don't say you are complaining about this...........

    Once again, THIS IS ONE OF THE BIGGEST PROBLEMS IN OUR INDUSTRY. NON-PROFESSIONALS NOT FOLLOWING THE RULES.

    You never mentioned what type of vehicle it is your driving.

    My only truck is a pickup. I have it registered at 9200lb, and it has commercial plates.........that's the law, and that's how its done.

    As for a way to get the DOT to ignore you.................there is none!

    This is a matter that is going to become a bigger, and bigger epidemic. Honestly, if you are driving a commercial vehicle, then learn to except the costs.......Factor it in to your overhead. There's no avoiding it. And the reason for it...............all the non-professional people not following the rules....they are the ones to blame, and now, all the guys who do follow the rules have to pay for those who don't.........nothing new in this country....always has been that way, always will.

    By the way, commercial plates for my truck are around $120 a year. ..........if that is too much money, then I don't know what to say. For $120 I'm legal........is that asking that much???? And perhaps, that $120 commercial plate charge will keep 'joe scrub' from lowballing your prices out.........is that a bad thing too????
     
  9. ladibugg

    ladibugg LawnSite Member
    Posts: 79

    No where in my post did I try to imply that I am not in compliance. I am not sure where you all got that.

    What I did say was that everyday I see 3/4 ton and 1 ton commercial trucks that are not in compliance. Neither with plates nor with load limits.

    I also said that I do not want to be pulled over every time I take out my truck. I don't want to get to know Mr. Weighmaster by his/her first name.

    Plates? How bout $480.00

    This post is NOT about compliance. This post is NOT about disobeying the law.

    This post is about me not being pulled over on a daily basis, which is what some people have described to me. Just wanted to hear what other experience with big trucks.

    Here in Oakland County it seems the guys that have legit business get targeted and the scrubs get ignored. Is that what happens?

    How many times can they check to see if my turn signal works before they go away?
     
  10. kris

    kris LawnSite Bronze Member
    from nowhere
    Posts: 1,578

    I have been pulled over numerous times ... once I received an over weight ticket. They need no reason to pull you over.. Yes they can be a pain ... normally if they get to know your trucks and they find that they are up to par, then they may not target you as much or let the odd thing slide. You learn to avoid some roads that they are always on but they are not stupid ... they will sit in strategic spots like the only road leading from a gravel pit.

    I believe it will get tougher in years to come.

    PS ... You could be right that only legit business get pulled over. Im not sure how they would know if a loaded down half ton was not a homeowner doing a week-end project. I suppose if they saw it a few times that maybe they would clue in.
     

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