Posted by: project151 | April 4, 2008

P-151 reader has followup info on oversize loads traveling Routes 151 & 6

Today P-151 received the following update to an original post that Janet wrote to us back in February. Janet has been kind enough to include the response of the Virginia DMV. Something we all suspected, but they have now confirmed.

P-151 does want to commend the VA State Police for a noticeably increased enforcement over the past several weeks along Routes 151 & 6 in Nelson County, VA. They have been stopping numerous private passenger cars and citing them for excessive speed. Thank you troopers for the wonderful job! Unfortunately, no large semi trucks have been seen being pulled over, though excessive speeds and erratic driving have been witnessed and reported to authorities over the past several weeks at both local and state levels.

Kudos to Janet for digging into this and letting us know:

I write to follow-up on my posting of February 27 and let everyone know that I got a response to my complaint/inquiry regarding that over-sized load traveling on 151 that morning.

It is the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) and not VDOT (to whom I originally wrote) which is responsible for issuing hauling permits for such transport and I received the following reply from Mr. William Childress in DMV’s Hauling Permit Office.

(for reader’s brevity sake, PARAGRAPHS 5 & 6 ARE MOST PERTINENT TO THIS ISSUE)

Mr. Childress wrote:

Thank you for your e-mail and the opportunity to respond regarding the use of Route 151 in Nelson and Albermarle Counties for Oversize Loads.

The routing of oversize vehicles is the responsibility of DMV’s Hauling Permit Office. During calendar year 2007, the Hauling Permit Office issued over 104,000 hauling permits for vehicles that were oversized and or overweight.

Two types of permits are issued by the Hauling Permit Office – Single Trip permit and Blanket Permit. Single Trip permits are route specific and contain very specific information as it relates to the move in which the permit was issued for. The route of travel is designated, the authorized time of movement, safety requirements (flags, signs, amber flashing lights, etc) and vehicle escorts, depending on whether the oversize load is wide or long, and the type of roads being traveled.

Blanket permits generally are not route specific, but will allow a hauler to move several times during a specified period on any unrestricted road or highway. A restricted road will have signs that will identify the restriction, such as no trucks allowed, no trucks exceeding 65 feet in length or 16 ton limit to name a few. These restrictions are designated by VDOT. Blanket permits also contain
specific safety requirements such as authorized time of travel, safety
requirements (flags, signs, amber flashing lights) and vehicle escort requirements.

When issuing hauling permits we do not route oversize movements over restricted highways or over Virginia Byways. Since Route 151 is a Virginia Byway we will not use it when routing a wide load, unless the delivery is taking place on Route 151. Our first priority is to ensure the safety and well being of the traveling public, therefore we route wide loads on divided highways such as Route 29 and I-64 whenever possible.

Unfortunately there are many oversize movements on the highways moving items without a hauling permit and without our knowledge. These illegal moves run the risk of being caught and cited by State and or local enforcement personnel. They are smart enough to give the appearance of being legal by displaying the appropriate signs, lighting and some even have escorts in place. This appearance also gives the traveling public the impression these illegal moves are legitimate.

Thank you for giving me the opportunity to respond to your e-mail and provide you with some information on the permitting process. … Wm.

Such transport as I witnessed that day must therefore have been unauthorized and thus illegal, leaving one to conclude that the appropriate action to take in such a case is to notify local law enforcement and take down any tag numbers and identification information possible. If it’s local then it’s okay, if not, then they can be cited and we may have prevented an accident and loss of life.



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