Truck activity focus of New York bills

November 2019

Keith Goble

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A slew of activity at the New York statehouse covers issues pertaining to commercial vehicles. The highest concentration of legislative activity concerns truck traffic in New York City.

One Assembly bill would authorize New York City to implement a pilot truck weight photo-monitoring system at certain locations around the city. Truck owners would be liable when the truck’s operator drives on stretches of road posted as a “no thru truck street.” A2105 would authorize up to 50 intersections to be outfitted with the photo-monitoring devices.

A Senate-approved bill would increase the fine for illegally parking a commercial vehicle in parts of the city. S3215 would authorize $400 fines – up from $250 – for illegally parking a “tractor-trailer combination, tractor, truck tractor or semitrailer” in residential neighborhoods of New York City. Subsequent violations within six months would result in $800 fines – up from $500.

Another Senate-approved bill covers concern about large trucks parked on New York City streets. Specifically, S2761 would authorize a $1,000 fine for a trailer or semitrailer parked or left unattended overnight. Currently, violations of illegally parked tractor-trailers or semis do not carry a fine. Owners are responsible only for paying a $160 towing fee.

An Assembly bill would prohibit the intentional removal of identification markers from commercial vehicles in the city for the purpose of evading a traffic infraction, such as illegal parking.

A7758 specifies that removal of markers that include registration stickers, license plates, and VINs could result in fines of $200 to $1,000.

A separate Assembly bill is intended to prevent oversized commercial vehicles from entering certain parkways in Westchester County.

A3138 would direct the New York State DOT to study and determine which entrances to “special parkways” in the New York City-area county are used most frequently by commercial vehicles.

Within one year of making the determination, the agency would be responsible for installing height barriers to prevent or otherwise hinder vehicles that exceed bridge clearance heights from accessing such limited-access roads.

One Assembly bill covers CDL holders with lapses or termination affecting their personal driving privileges. A1748 would permit CDL holders to continue to drive after a lapse or termination of insurance for his or her personal vehicle if he/she needs their license to perform his or her employment.

A separate bill would make it illegal in the state for a commercial driver to transport loose substances uncovered in an open vehicle.

A2433 would require commercial operators to use safeguards approved by the New York State DOT to prevent loose substances from becoming dislodged or removed during transport.

New York law now requires the use of a tarp only when open trucks or trailers transport loose substances on public highways.

The bill would revise statute to require the use of a tarp or like device by all commercial operators transporting loose substances in an open truck or trailer.

The legislation includes a provision to prevent substances from being thrown by the vehicle’s wheels during travel. Specifically, tire guards would be required to prevent objects from being thrown during operation.

A separate bill would require the removal of snow and ice from atop vehicles before heading out on certain roadways.

A4197 would permit police to cite truckers and other drivers for failure to act when traveling on roadways with posted speeds in excess of 40 mph. Accumulations must be at least 2 inches of snow or one-half inch of ice.

Violators would face $75 fines.

The bill includes an exception for occasions when snow, sleet or freezing rain falls while the vehicle is in operation. LL

 

Keith Goble

Keith Goble has been covering trucking-related laws since 2000. His daily web reports, radio news and “OOIDA’s State Watch” in Land Line Magazine are the industry’s premier sources for information regarding state legislative affairs.