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The Trucker's Frustration with Bad Equipment

Problems with Bad Equipment

What might not be an infraction in CA, could be a problem that leads to a bad equipment ticket in another state or on an interstate highway in CA. When driving highways such as I-5, 10, and 15 among others, you must meet Federal the North American (NA) Cargo Securement Standard Model Regulations. Even though the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMSCA) regulations, the Cargo Securement Rules for securing loads and which equipment must be kept on hand are quite specific, it might take a physics or math professor to figure out exactly what is safe.

It is imperative to use the proper securing equipment, so the shifting of loads within or falling off from a commercial motor vehicle (CMV) does not happen and to decrease the occurrence of traffic accidents due to improperly secured cargo. The essential factor in securing a load is what act of acceleration or deceleration (braking) will compromise your load. The force of gravity on the cargo during these actions and in a curve, must be considered when properly securing a load, except in tanks, boxes, and similar setups for bulk transport of goods that lack structure, such as grains, liquids, and sand, gravel, or concrete.

The CHP, however, may not see it that way. If you don’t meet the requirements for a secure load or another driver borrowed one of your warning triangles, you could get a bad equipment ticket. Likewise, tie-downs and other damaged or worn securing equipment must be replaced. All equipment must function correctly with serviceable components and parts. Otherwise, the driver might be forced to defend their actions or face a fine and a lower Compliance, Safety, and Accountability (CSA) score.

Flatbeds, Step Decks, and Removable Goose Neck (RGN) Trucking

Those truckers known as flatbedders are a different breed than many truckers. Much of the reason for that is the load and the requirements for securement. Their load and how they secured it is are frequently apparent to law enforcement officers (LEO) at a glance. Although each type of load and trailer has specific requirements, when a tarp is flapping, or a synthetic rope is flying in the breeze, an LEO might become suspicious of the load and might pull you over for an inspection. That’s the last thing any trucker wants short of a ticket.

A roadside inspection can produce many types of bad equipment violations. Most truckers do not need to be reminded to be polite and compliant with LEO, but this too bears repeating. If a violation is noted that could get corrected on the spot, many LEOs will allow it, but if the driver was hostile to the LEO, they might just start writing the ticket.

A Past Bad Equipment Ticket

Are old bad equipment or oversized load ticket holding you back? Chances are if you have a traffic ticket on your ten-year driving history, it could be keeping you from getting a better job and cheaper insurance. CSA scores and insurance are only tracked for three years, except major infractions, misdemeanors, and felonies. However, what is a minor infraction for most drivers, for a commercial driver’s license (CDL) holder, it could hold you back from advancement or getting a job with a higher paying trucking outfit.

The FMSCA continually change the regulations, and often the CA Vehicle Codes (CVC) change as well. Those old tickets that might be holding you back might get removed from your motor vehicle driving record (MVR) and your Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA) scores by a good traffic ticket lawyer.

While most commercial driver’s license (CDL) holders are aware of this, it bears repeating; whenever you get a traffic ticket, you must consult a local traffic ticket lawyer. Why local? It’s simple, these attorneys represent clients all the time in traffic court and know what works to get charges reduced or dismissed.

Kings County Traffic Lawyer

Hanford Courthouse sees a lot of truckers come and go. Many of them ticketed out on I-5 for bad equipment get to face off against the traffic court judge because they know any traffic ticket for a CDL holder spells trouble. Even an otherwise minor thing like a missing triangle can result in a lower CSA score. Call Bigger & Harman and “keep on trucking.” Bigger & Harman offer a free phone consultation for truckers, so call today, (661) 349-9300, or send an email: attorney@markbigger.com.

Bigger & Harman maintain a Facebook page to provide tips truckers and other drivers, as well as a forum for client feedback. When you have doubts about who to contact to handle your traffic ticket, check what other CDL holders are saying about the service they received from Bigger & Harman. Three additional sources to consider are Avvo, Nolo, and Yelp. Avvo and Nolo are renowned legal websites that support attorneys across America. Or, the opposite is possible when a lawyer or firm does not meet their expectations, or that of their clients.

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