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Thread: Weigh Stations....

  1. #1
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    Default Weigh Stations....

    Hey guys,
    I just cannot make heads or tails of this and I doubt I'll get a defined answer here either. I've been searching all over the internet and I hear sooo many mixed opinions, don't stop, must stop, maybe stop if...

    Here's the facts.... I bought a Chevy 3500HD truck with a 15' box on the back for moving copiers for my business. It has a curb weight of like 12K pounds. I don't have or need a CDL or a DOT number. I'll probably put on 10K miles a year moving copiers, so very little use. The truck is registered in FL and the guy who picked it up for me did not stop for weigh stations.

    I hear people say, "Stop anyway, better to be safe than sorry." Then I hear, "If you do stop you'll be asked for log books and medical cards and they'll fine the hell out of you."

    I also hear it's different from state to state.

    Now, I have been driving these type of trucks for YEARS and have never stopped for passing a weigh station, however, there was this one time I got pulled over when I was 18 working for my former employer for blowing a weigh station in Michigan and they threw the book at me, well,,, my employer. It was not a fun experience. Got tickets for everything under the sun and was not able to drive the truck back home. The lady cops, were really mean to me as well and treated me like some A-hole trying to evade the law.

    I just don't get the law, I want to do it right but I cannot seem to find the right answers to doing this correctly. It does not make sense that If I drive the truck a couple thousand miles every 6 months that I need the certification of a commercial driver when any Joe Schmo can rent a bigger truck from U-Haul and not need anything except for a Class A drivers license.

    Can anyone shed some light on this???

    Thanks!
    Adam

  2. #2
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    HERE is a good thread on a power boating forum that might help. Post # 17 speaks specifically about Florida.

    Seems that if you have a one ton (3500) or smaller truck and your gross vehicle weight is 10,000 lbs or under, you'll be fine, although you'd be operating in a little bit of a gray area, but that would be apropos since you're a laser enthusiast now wouldn't it?

    One thing -you said your curb weight is 12,000 pounds. What's your GVW? I personally think you'll be fine, especially if you put some lettering on the doors that say "Not For Hire" etc. You could always put a bed, a bathroom and a kitchen in the back.

    -Jonathan

  3. #3
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    First time you see a weigh station pull in and ask.

  4. #4
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    Default

    I have a very similar vehicle to yours and I have never stopped at a weigh station. My vehicle is personally registered (not to a business) because I use it for hobby purposes. I'd have to check what my GVW is. I have talked with a few commercial drivers about whether I CAN stop at a weigh station just to see how much I weigh, but they caution me not to do that because they say you have to pay for the service if you're a non-commercial driver.

    I have also heard it helps to keep from being pulled over if you put "Not for Hire" lettering on the side. I've never had a problem in TN, GA, or NC, but I did get pulled in VA and the officer asked a lot of questions about whether it was a business vehicle (do you make money doing this?). Never driven it down to FL though.

  5. #5
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    Interesting question. I used to drive truck and trailer over the road and I have always had to stop at weigh stations. I knew I had to stop and I also knew what I needed. I.E. Class A CDL with endorsements, had to do daily logs, medical card etc.

    Thinking back, I can't remember ever seeing anything but a semi truck or a solo dump truck in a weigh station. Possibly there was, but I don't remember any.

    If it were me I would call Wisconsin Highway Patrol and Wisconsin Dept of Transportation and ask them. Calling both would let you know if it is a gray area if you get 2 different answers. My suggestion is to tell what kind of truck it is and then say it is a personal truck. After you get that answer, ask them if you happened to be hired to haul something for money, do the same rules apply? My guess is that your truck does not have to stop at weigh stations and you do not need anything but a regular drivers license - unless it has air brakes.

    Whatever you find out will roughly apply to all states. Years ago the laws varied from state to state, and the Feds finally started withholding matching Fed funds for highways until every state standardized. That pretty much got the laws for all states the same.

    Truck driving is a huge PITA if you are subject to commercial drivers laws. I would live under a bridge before I would go back to truck driving.

    Edit: I read Florida and assumed you were there. - Florida + Wisconsin
    Last edited by Phredy1; 10-14-2010 at 16:00.

  6. #6
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    hey adam i think the key to the gray area is: is the truck in your company name and do you have advertising on the side? if not you will be fine i was stopped by SC HP my box has the old company's logo. i was not ticketed. but given a hard time about the logo, that was old and faded. when you got your tag you should get personal plate and never admit its for work also tag for extra weight hope this helps

  7. #7
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    I agree with John Yaya's idea. I think there is no better place to check on what you need. However, I did find this website, so maybe it will help?

    http://www.coopsareopen.com/

  8. #8
    mixedgas's Avatar
    mixedgas is offline Creaky Old Award Winning Bastard Technologist
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    Most of them in Ohio are closed/abandoned.

    I'd paint not for hire on it, as we do have the transportation inspection arm of the highway patrol.

    Under 10K pounds here, no weight station.

    Steve

  9. #9
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    Default Money

    The basic rule is if you are getting paid to drive, (ie making money from it) then you need to have a DOT and stop and fill out a log book and etc etc. When I do it these days with a trailer full of lights my argument is always I do not get paid to drive, that is personal time.
    Larry

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by wondertwnz View Post
    The basic rule is if you are getting paid to drive, (ie making money from it) then you need to have a DOT and stop and fill out a log book and etc etc. When I do it these days with a trailer full of lights my argument is always I do not get paid to drive, that is personal time.
    Larry

    I'm not getting paid to drive, I'm getting paid for what my cargo does. The truck is privately registered. I put on both of my doors and rear "PRIVATELY OWNED - NOT FOR HIRE" In black vinyl lettering. I'd put "GO AWAY PIGS!" but i don't think that would go over well.

    Well, we'll see what happens.

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