Do Farmers Have To Stop At Weigh Stations?

You’re a farmer, it’s normal to want to enquire whether you have to stop at weigh stations or not. In this article, we’ll give a response to the question, Do Farmers Have To Stop At Weigh Stations? That’s not all, we’ll also tell you about what a Weigh Station and even more.

Do Farmers Have To Stop At Weigh Stations?

The laws vary by state. Generally, commercial trucks over 10,000 pounds need to stop at all open scales. Signs pointing to scales will usually state the Gross Vehicle Weight (GVW) needed to go through weigh stations, and most rented ones will have it printed on the side.

What Are Weigh Stations

Weigh stations are basically a checkpoint found along a highway in order to inspect weighs. Usually, commercial vehicles and trucks are always subject to this inspection. Weigh stations are spots that are equipped with truck scales. Some of these truck scales are weigh in common and give the trucks the permission to keep moving while being weighed. As for the older scales, they would require those trucks to stop. There are quite a good number of different scales used, from single angle scales to multi-axle sets.

There’s something called “signal lights.” What’s the use of these lights? These lights are used to indicate whether the driver should pull over for further inspection or they’re allowed to continue their journey on the highway. A lot of jurisdictions out there make use of portable scales, which makes it possible for weigh stations to be put up at any point. With portable scales, state can set up scales, temporary scales, for situations like temporary checkpoints on isolated roads which [most times] are used by trucks, seasonal checkpoints or to ensure that drivers are prevented from avoiding scales at fixed locations.

In addition, locations known as “purpose-built locations” may have portable scales set up around them — locations that are, normally, not staffed. The leading and common reason for putting up portable scales is to, during harvest season, monitor trucks.

How Do Truck Weigh Stations Work?

The taxes collected by most states is determined by the weight of transported goods. The weigh stations you see are built for various tax purposes, including the purpose of monitoring the weight of a truck to make sure that it doesn’t exceed the law-imposed weight seen inside the safety guidelines that every state must adhere to. While the allowed weight, the maximum allowed weight, is something that varies — a common standard is up to 34,000 pounds [15,400 kilograms]. Usually, weight can be calculated in two measurements:

  • Axle weight – the amount of weight that comes with each axle
  • Gross weight – the combined weight of every one of the axles

The people who build truck scales have the possible damage in mind, so they build them in such a way that they’re able to withstand a colossal amount of abuse. Let’s look at Weigh-Tronix as an example; Weigh-Tronix is a brand that provides a truck scale on which they place warranty, a warranty to weigh trucks that have a gross weight of 80,000 lbs (36,000 kg), each at a 200-daily rate, 365 days a year for up to 25 years. A material that can be used to build a truck scale is steel — and concrete, as an alternative, could also be used. In most cases, it could be a combination of steel and concrete (both). The technology truck-scales-producing companies used in building the scales vary.

Below are a few of the more common forms.

Load-cell systems are regarded as the most popular technology used. Each cell consists of a simply durable material such as concrete or steel with either one or even more strain gauges attached to or just embedded in it. A strain gauge comes with a single wire (or wires) that works effectively in transmitting a mild electric current. As the cell begins to get subjected to weight, the wire right inside the strain gauge is slightly compromised or altered. As you change the wire, prepare to experience a difference in the resistance to the current that passes through it.

Furthermore, the signal from each of the cells is transferred to the junction box, where there’s a sensor that’s present to measure the variance in the current and ensure you calculate the amount of weight that the scale is accommodating. The strain gauges inside the load cells can either be tension or compression based. Let’s look at a compression strain gauge, it’s based on the level at which the cell compresses when pressure is exerted. As for a tension strain gauge, it’s strictly based on the minute change in the cell’s shape — caused by the weight.

A bending-plate system makes use of metal plates that have some strain gauges attached to them. As the scale encounters weight, the plates become subjected to stress. The strain gauge present on each of the plates calculates the measurement of the amount of stress and also calculates the weight of load required to bring about it. There’s an addition of the amounts coming from each gauge in order to be able to figure out the total for that axle.

Piezoelectric systems come with a series of piezoelectric sensors — which they use. In order to embed the sensors, one would have to get a conducting material. Why? It’s because these kinds of sensors are embedded in such material. When there’s weight applied, the pressure causes a change in the voltage of the electrical charge flowing through the conductor. Another thing the sensors do is, they calculate the load and measure the voltage “change.” The amount gotten from each of the sensors is added together.

To add to the various scales used, there are at least three working methods of getting a truck’s weight:

  • One-axle: This method has been regarded as the most difficult method. It’s the method where a truck gradually drives across just one scale, having to stop each time the scale has a set of wheels. After every one of the axles has been weighed, the total is then added together.
  • One-stop: In this method, you’d have to make use of a series of scales in order to easily have the entire truck weighed at once. There’s an electronic controller to which the scales are connected. What does the electronic controller do? It automatically combines the weights of the axle to figure out the gross weight.
  • Weight-in-motion (WIM): This method, among the other ones mentioned, is known for gaining momentum. WIM makes use of a series of sensors — embedded sensors — to calculate the weight per axle as a truck moves over the sensor pad. Unlike what the other two entails, there’s really no need for the truck to observe a complete stop while being on the scales. In fact, a few WIM systems have their installation carried out in highways for the purpose of monitoring traffic at speed.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Is It Illegal To Go Around Weigh Stations?

Failing to observe a stop at weigh station by disobeying a signal of the weight station is illegal. There’s a shortcut that saves truckers money and time — such a shortcut is “dodging the scales” by taking a detour.

Do Motor Coaches Have To Stop At Weigh Stations?

It’s not a necessity for motorhomes to stop at weigh stations. Any vehicle without or with a trailer that possesses a weight of over 10,000 must be weighed.

What Happens If A Trucker Skips A Weigh Station?

Let’s take for example: if a trucker carries out the act of skipping a required weigh station, they are most likely to be pulled over by a law enforcement officer, who may instruct the trucker to begin a drive right back to the weigh station. And that can lead to additional delays because even more of your trucks could be required to stop at weigh stations.

How Do You Avoid Weigh Stations?

If it’s in your plans to avoid weight station, what you can do is: you either take an different route or you patiently wait until it’s past the close time of the weigh station. It can be quite helpful to make use of the weigh station apps, regardless of the method you decide to choose. The purpose of these weigh station apps is to inform you about their various locations — locations of the available weigh stations close to you. You’ll also get to know when they are close and the time they open.

What Is The Point Of A Weigh Station?

Weigh Stations are used basically to check the weight of a truck in order to ensure it’s not overweight and is compliant with state laws and safety guidelines.

What Happens When A Truck Is Overweight?

Most weigh stations force drivers out there to “shut down” their operation if the weight of a truck exceeds 600 pounds over maximum gross weight. Not only would you write a check to fund the salary of the officer who caught your driver, but he would also lose time and money waiting until another truck arrives to unload the excess weight.

Do Farmers Have To Stop At Weigh Stations – Conclusion

As a recap of the response we gave to the question — Do Farmers Have To Stop At Weigh Stations? — we stated that:

The laws vary by state. Generally, commercial trucks over 10,000 pounds need to stop at all open scales. Signs pointing to scales will usually state the Gross Vehicle Weight (GVW) needed to go through weigh stations, and most rented ones will have it printed on the side.

Thanks for reading.