Conn. Cracks Down on Temporary Plates, Inspections for Large Trucks

April 20, 2006

Connecticut Governor M. Jodi Rell has accepted the Department of Motor Vehicles’ recommendations to stop the prolonged use of temporary commercial plates on large trucks that have not had safety inspections.

“This is another step the Department of Motor Vehicles is taking to increase safety by forcing inspections of these vehicles that are on the roads daily,” said Governor Rell. “I want the DMV to do as much as possible to stop unsafe trucks from operating in Connecticut.”

DMV Commissioner Ralph J. Carpenter said that the agency has been studying the use of temporary plates for several months and a safety inspection would be required within 10 days of receiving the temporary plate.

“This plan is part of the agency’s overall increased effort, including the hiring of additional truck inspectors and performing more truck inspections, to crack down on owners and trucks in violation of state and federal laws,” he said.

Under the proposal, trucks receiving the temporary plates would only be able to use the plates to move the vehicle to or from the place of sale or transfer, to a plant, construction site or other job location, to obtain repairs or to a site offering a safety inspection. Under no circumstances would a truck with a temporary plate be allowed to carry a load of any kind.

The plate would be labeled “Inspection Only.”

Once the truck has passed inspection, it would either be eligible for a permanent registration or a 60-day temporary registration. The choice would depend on how long the truck would be in use and the fee that an owner wanted to pay.

A temporary registration, which is shorter in duration than the permanent registration, costs less – $46 for each 10-day period.

In addition to changing the use of temporary plates on trucks, the department has also taken a number of other steps to enforce state and federal laws pertaining to the safe operation of these large trucks across Connecticut.

The DMV hired eight new inspectors, increasing the number of inspectors on our truck teams. These inspectors have helped to increase our truck inspections.

With the increase of inspectors the DMV expanded its truck teams to seven. This expansion allows those teams to spread out across our State and patrol the high crash corridors as well as rural areas.

The Top 25, intra- and interstate companies have all been visited and their trucks have been inspected. As a result of these visits, several of these companies have moved off of the Top 25 list.

The state received a $170,000 grant to conduct educational visits and inspect all the trucks for our poorly rated companies. This grant allows us to conduct these visits and inspections outside our normal hours. These visits and inspections help to ensure that these companies’ trucks are not being operated in an unsafe condition.

In addition, Connecticut received a $60,000 grant to enforce commercial motor vehicle safety belt use, resulting in more stops of commercial drivers and their vehicles that are violating the law.

The state also received a $50,000 Grant to conduct inspections on buses at our casinos. This ensures that those buses coming to our Connecticut casinos are in safe condition.

As part of the Following Too Close Campaign, the State received a $250,000 Grant that allows Inspectors and Troopers to focus on truck drivers who are following to close and/or are committing other serious traffic offenses. Again, resulting in more stops of commercial drivers and their vehicles that are violating the law.

The DMV has provided training at the Police Academy to local and State Police officers on commercial vehicle awareness, “Trucks 101”. The next class is being given on April 13th. This class gives those officers who are not familiar with trucks a basic understand of trucks and hopefully increases there comfort level when dealing with trucks and commercial drivers.

Source: Governor’s Office

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