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A234, R275, H3853
Sponsors: Reps. Witherspoon, Walker, Bales, Harvin, Littlejohn, Lowe, Mahaffey, Miller, M.A. Pitts, Spires and Bowers
Document Path: l:\council\bills\swb\5242cm07.doc
Introduced in the House on April 11, 2007
Introduced in the Senate on February 19, 2008
Last Amended on April 24, 2008
Passed by the General Assembly on May 7, 2008
Became law without Governor's signature, May 22, 2008
Summary: Motor vehicle load
HISTORY OF LEGISLATIVE ACTIONS
Date Body Action Description with journal page number ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 4/11/2007 House Introduced and read first time HJ-11 4/11/2007 House Referred to Committee on Education and Public Works HJ-12 5/29/2007 House Committee report: Favorable with amendment Education and Public Works HJ-9 5/31/2007 House Debate adjourned until Tuesday, June 5, 2007 HJ-27 6/5/2007 House Recommitted to Committee on Education and Public Works HJ-33 1/31/2008 House Committee report: Favorable with amendment Education and Public Works HJ-9 2/1/2008 Scrivener's error corrected 2/5/2008 House Debate adjourned until Wednesday, February 6, 2008 HJ-44 2/6/2008 House Debate adjourned until Wednesday, February 13, 2008 HJ-16 2/12/2008 House Member(s) request name added as sponsor: Bowers 2/13/2008 House Amended HJ-14 2/13/2008 House Read second time HJ-17 2/14/2008 House Read third time and sent to Senate HJ-15 2/14/2008 Scrivener's error corrected 2/19/2008 Senate Introduced and read first time SJ-4 2/19/2008 Senate Referred to Committee on Transportation SJ-4 4/8/2008 Senate Committee report: Favorable with amendment Transportation SJ-9 4/9/2008 Scrivener's error corrected 4/9/2008 Senate Committee Amendment Adopted SJ-102 4/9/2008 Senate Read second time SJ-102 4/10/2008 Senate Read third time and returned to House with amendments SJ-28 4/10/2008 Scrivener's error corrected 4/22/2008 House Debate adjourned on Senate amendments until Wednesday, April 23, 2008 HJ-85 4/23/2008 House Debate adjourned on Senate amendments until Thursday, April 24, 2008 HJ-59 4/24/2008 House Senate amendment amended HJ-86 4/24/2008 House Returned to Senate with amendments HJ-86 5/7/2008 Senate Concurred in House amendment and enrolled SJ-23 5/15/2008 Ratified R 275 5/22/2008 Became law without Governor's signature 6/2/2008 Copies available 6/2/2008 Effective date 05/22/08 6/4/2008 Act No. 234
View the latest legislative information at the LPITS web site
VERSIONS OF THIS BILL
(A234, R275, H3853)
AN ACT TO AMEND SECTION 56-5-4630, CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, RELATING TO THE PLACEMENT OF A RED LIGHT, LANTERN, OR FLAG UPON A LOAD THAT EXTENDS FOUR FEET OR MORE BEYOND THE BED OR BODY OF A VEHICLE, SO AS TO REVISE THE CIRCUMSTANCES UPON WHICH THE RED LIGHT, LANTERN, OR FLAG MUST BE PLACED UPON THE LOAD, AND TO PROVIDE THAT UNDER CERTAIN CIRCUMSTANCES AN AMBER STROBE LIGHT MUST BE AFFIXED TO THE LOAD; TO AMEND SECTION 56-5-4160, AS AMENDED, RELATING TO THE OPERATION OF CERTAIN VEHICLES, AND VEHICLE COMBINATIONS WITH LAWFUL GROSS WEIGHTS AND LOADS, SO AS TO PROVIDE THAT THE MAXIMUM GROSS VEHICLE WEIGHT AND AXLE WEIGHT LIMIT FOR CERTAIN VEHICLES EQUIPPED WITH AN IDLE REDUCTION SYSTEM MAY BE INCREASED BY AN AMOUNT THAT DOES NOT EXCEED FOUR HUNDRED POUNDS; TO AMEND SECTION 56-5-4140, RELATING TO THE GROSS WEIGHT OF CERTAIN VEHICLES, SO AS TO ESTABLISH ENFORCEMENT TOLERANCES FOR VEHICLES TRANSPORTING CERTAIN FOREST PRODUCTS AND SOD; TO AMEND SECTION 56-5-4060, RELATING TO THE MAXIMUM HEIGHT OF CERTAIN VEHICLES, AND THE PASSAGE OF VEHICLES UNDER AN OVERHEAD OBSTRUCTION, SO AS TO REVISE THE TYPES OF VEHICLES THAT MAY NOT EXCEED THE EXISTING MAXIMUM HEIGHT, TO ESTABLISH A NEW HEIGHT RESTRICTION FOR CERTAIN VEHICLES, TO PROVIDE A PROCEDURE TO OBTAIN AN EXEMPTION FROM COMPLYING WITH A PARTICULAR HEIGHT RESTRICTION, AND TO DELETE THE PROVISION THAT PROVIDES THAT AN AUTOMOBILE TRANSPORTER IS RESPONSIBLE FOR CERTAIN PERSONAL INJURIES AND PROPERTY DAMAGE RESULTING FROM OPERATING A UNIT IN EXCESS OF A CERTAIN HEIGHT; BY ADDING CHAPTER 35 TO TITLE 56 SO AS TO ESTABLISH IDLING RESTRICTIONS FOR COMMERCIAL DIESEL VEHICLES, TO PROVIDE PENALTIES FOR VEHICLES THAT VIOLATE THE PROVISIONS OF THIS CHAPTER, TO PROVIDE THAT THE STATE TRANSPORT POLICE DIVISION OF THE DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC SAFETY SHALL ENFORCE THE PROVISIONS CONTAINED IN THIS CHAPTER, TO PROVIDE THAT FINES COLLECTED PURSUANT TO THIS CHAPTER MUST BE PLACED IN THE DIESEL IDLING REDUCTION FUND ADMINISTERED BY THE STATE TREASURY AND USED TO DEVELOP AND OPERATE AN IDLING AWARENESS PROGRAM, AND TO PROVIDE THAT THE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND ENVIRONMENTAL CONTROL SHALL PROMULGATE REGULATIONS TO ADMINISTER AND ENFORCE THE PROVISIONS OF THIS CHAPTER; AND TO AMEND SECTION 56-5-4160, AS AMENDED, RELATING TO THE OPERATION OF CERTAIN VEHICLES AND VEHICLE COMBINATIONS WITH LAWFUL GROSS WEIGHTS AND LOADS, SO AS TO PROVIDE THAT THE UNIFORM CITATION USED BY THE STATE TRANSPORT POLICE DIVISION ALSO MUST BE USED FOR IDLING VIOLATIONS, AND TO REVISE CERTAIN LANGUAGE CONTAINED ON THE CITATION.
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:
Placement of warning signals on load carrying vehicles
SECTION 1. Section 56-5-4630 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 56-5-4630. (A) Whenever the load upon a vehicle extends to the rear four feet or more beyond the bed or body of the vehicle, the vehicle must be equipped with, at the times specified in Section 56-5-4450, the following safety equipment:
(1) for any commercial motor vehicle as defined in this title transporting unmanufactured forest products as defined in Department of Public Safety Regulation 38-390, one amber strobe-type lamp equipped with a multi-directional-type lens securely affixed as close as practical to the end of the projecting load, so as to be visible from the rear and side of the projecting load. If one strobe lamp fails to make the projecting load visible from both sides and the rear of the projecting load, multiple strobe lamps must be utilized to meet the visibility requirements. The strobe lamp shall flash at a rate of at least sixty flashes per minute and must be plainly visible from a distance of at least five hundred feet to the sides and rear of the projecting load. The lamp must be operating any time the vehicle is operated on a highway or parked on the shoulder or immediately adjacent to the traveled portion of a public roadway; or
(2) a red light or lantern plainly visible from a distance of at least five hundred feet to the side or rear must be displayed at the extreme rear of the load if the strobe light required by this section becomes temporarily inoperable while transporting a load between points.
(B) The projecting load must be marked at the extreme rear of the load with a red flag or cloth not less than twelve inches by twelve inches and hung so that the entire area is visible to the driver of a vehicle approaching from the rear.
(C) Utility companies when responding to an emergency situation such as caused by storms or accidents are exempt from the provisions of this section."
Maximum gross vehicle weights
SECTION 2. Section 56-5-4160 of the 1976 Code, as last amended by Act 381 of 2006, is further amended by adding at the end:
"(L) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the maximum gross vehicle weight and axle weight limit for a vehicle or combination of vehicles equipped with an idle reduction system, as provided for in 23 U.S.C. 127, may be increased by an amount equal to the weight of the system, not to exceed four hundred pounds. Upon request by a law enforcement officer, the vehicle operator must provide proof that the system is fully functional and that the vehicle's gross weight increase allowed pursuant to this section is attributable only to the system."
SECTION 3. Section 56-5-4140(1)(a) of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"(a)(1) The gross weight of a vehicle or combination of vehicles, operated or moved upon any interstate, highway, or section of highway shall not exceed:
(i) Single-unit vehicle with two axles ................. 35,000 lbs.
(ii) Single-unit vehicle with three axles................ 46,000 lbs.
(iii) Single-unit vehicle with four axles.................. 63,500 lbs.
Except, on the interstate, vehicles must meet axle spacing requirements and corresponding maximum overall gross weights, not to exceed 63,500 lbs., in accordance with the table in (b) plus tolerances.
(iv) Single-unit vehicle with five or more axles.....65,000 lbs.
Except, on the interstate, vehicles must meet axle spacing requirements and corresponding maximum overall gross weights, not to exceed 65,000 lbs., in accordance with the table in (b) plus tolerances.
(v) Combination of vehicles with three axles........50,000 lbs.
(vi) Combination of vehicles with four axles ........ 65,000 lbs.
(vii) Combination of vehicles with five or more
axles..................................................... 73,280 lbs.
The gross weight imposed upon any highway or section of highway other than the interstate by two or more consecutive axles in tandem articulated from a common attachment to the vehicle and spaced not less than forty inches nor more than ninety-six inches apart shall not exceed thirty-six thousand pounds, and no one axle of any such group of two or more consecutive axles shall exceed the load permitted for a single axle. The load imposed on the highway by two consecutive axles, individually attached to the vehicle and spaced not less than forty inches nor more than ninety-six inches apart, shall not exceed thirty-six thousand pounds and no one axle of any such group of two consecutive axles shall exceed the load permitted for a single axle.
The ten percent enforcement tolerance specified in Section 56-5-4160 applies to the vehicle weight limits specified in this section. However, the gross weight on a single axle operated on the interstate may not exceed 20,000 pounds, including all enforcement tolerances; the gross weight on a tandem axle operated on the interstate may not exceed 35,200 pounds, including all enforcement tolerances; the overall gross weight for vehicles operated on the interstate may not exceed 75,185 pounds, including all enforcement tolerances except as provided in (b).
(2) Enforcement tolerance is fifteen percent for a vehicle or trailer transporting unprocessed forest products or only on noninterstate routes.
(3) Enforcement tolerance is fifteen percent for a vehicle or trailer transporting sod only on noninterstate routes."
Maximum vehicle heights
SECTION 4. Section 56-5-4060 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 56-5-4060. (A)(1) No vehicle, unladen or with load, may exceed a height of thirteen feet six inches except that the height of an automobile transporter unit or a heavy truck transporting one or more other heavy trucks in a saddle mount combination may not exceed fourteen feet. Automobile transporters and heavy trucks transporting one or more other heavy trucks in a saddle mount combination are responsible for any personal injury or property damage resulting from operating a unit at a height in excess of thirteen feet six inches.
(2) To qualify for the fourteen foot exception contained in subsection (A)(1), the owner or operator of the heavy truck transporting one or more other heavy trucks in a saddle mount combination must have a valid routing permit issued by the Department of Transportation. All applicants shall be issued routing permits at no charge upon providing the department with evidence of its general liability coverage. Routing permits shall remain valid for twelve months from the date of issuance and specify the routes that may be traveled by the permittee and the conditions the permittee must observe while transporting heavy trucks in a saddle mount combination. Routing permits do not limit or otherwise affect the holder's liability for personal injuries or property damage.
(B) It is unlawful for any person to operate or attempt to operate under any underpass having a vertical clearance of less than thirteen feet six inches any vehicle with a height in excess of the vertical clearance of the underpass posted in accordance with the manual on uniform traffic-control devices provided for in Section 56-5-920. No person is required to raise, alter, construct, or reconstruct any existing underpass, wire, pole, trestle, or other structure to permit the passage of any vehicle, and neither the State nor any of its agencies or political subdivisions are liable for any personal injury or property damage resulting from the operation of a vehicle over any highway, road, or bridge or through any underpass having a vertical clearance of less than fourteen feet where the Department of Transportation or other body having maintenance jurisdiction of the underpass has posted notice of the reduced vertical clearance in accordance with the manual on uniform traffic-control devices provided for in Section 56-5-920."
SECTION 5. If any section, subsection, paragraph, subparagraph, sentence, clause, phrase, or word of this act is for any reason held to be unconstitutional, invalid, or is determined by the proper regulatory authority to be in violation of or out of compliance with applicable federal law or regulations, such holding or determination shall not affect the constitutionality or validity of the remaining portions of this act, the General Assembly hereby declaring that it would have passed this act, and each and every section, subsection, paragraph, subparagraph, sentence, clause, phrase, and word thereof, irrespective of the fact that any one or more other sections, subsections, paragraphs, subparagraphs, sentences, clauses, phrases, or words hereof may be declared to be unconstitutional, invalid, or otherwise ineffective.
Idling restrictions for commercial diesel vehicles
SECTION 6. Title 56 of the 1976 Code is amended by adding:
Section 56-35-10. As used in this chapter:
(1) 'Auxiliary power unit' means a mechanical or electrical device affixed to a vehicle that is designed to be used to generate an alternative source of power for any of the vehicle's systems other than the primary propulsion engine.
(2) 'Commercial diesel vehicle' means a self-propelled diesel motor vehicle licensed for use on a public roadway to transport passengers or property when the vehicle has a gross vehicle weight rating or gross combination weight rating, or gross vehicle weight or gross combination weight of ten thousand and one pounds or more, whichever is greater.
(3) 'Passenger bus' means a vehicle designed to carry sixteen or more passengers.
(4) 'Vehicle' means a commercial diesel vehicle.
Section 56-35-20. (A)(1) An operator of a commercial diesel vehicle may not allow the vehicle to idle for more than ten minutes in any sixty-minute period.
(2) A passenger bus may idle up to fifteen minutes in a sixty-minute period to provide heating or air conditioning when nondriver passengers are on board the vehicle.
(B) A vehicle operator does not violate the idling restrictions contained in subsection (A) if he is idling:
(1) a vehicle while forced to remain motionless because of traffic conditions beyond his control, an official traffic-control device or signal, or at the direction of a law enforcement official;
(2) a vehicle while operating defrosters, heaters, air conditioners, cargo refrigeration equipment, or to install equipment to prevent a safety or health emergency, or as otherwise required by federal or state motor carrier safety regulations or local requirements. This exception does not apply when idling during a rest period;
(3) a police, fire, ambulance, public safety, military, or other emergency or law enforcement vehicle, or any vehicle being used in an emergency capacity while in an emergency or training mode. This exception does not apply when idling for the convenience of the vehicle operator;
(4) the primary propulsion engine of a vehicle for maintenance, servicing, repairing, or diagnostic purposes if idling is required;
(5) a vehicle as part of a federal or state inspection to verify that all equipment is in good working order, if idling is required as part of the inspection;
(6) a primary propulsion engine necessary to power work-related mechanical or electrical operations. This exception shall not apply when idling is done for cabin comfort or to operate nonessential onboard equipment;
(7) an armored vehicle when a person remains inside the vehicle to guard contents or while the vehicle is being loaded or unloaded;
(8) an occupied vehicle with a sleeper berth compartment for purpose of air conditioning or heating:
(a) during a rest or sleep period;
(b) when the outside temperature at the location of the vehicle is less than forty degrees Fahrenheit or greater than eighty degrees Fahrenheit; or
(c) while the vehicle is at a rest area, fleet trucking terminal, commercial truck stop, state designated location designed for the intended purpose of a driver's rest area, or any location that the vehicle is legally permitted to park that is at least five hundred feet from residential housing, schools, daycare facilities, hospitals, or other similar locations; or
(9) an occupied vehicle while waiting in line or queuing to load or unload.
Section 56-35-30. (A) For the purposes of this chapter, operating an auxiliary power unit, generator set, or another mobile idling reduction technology as a means to heat, air condition, or provide electrical power, as an alternative to idling the main engine, does not constitute idling an engine.
(B) For a vehicle equipped with an auxiliary power unit designed for idling reduction, the gross vehicle weight or axle weight used to determine the fine for a violation of commercial vehicle weight restrictions is the actual gross vehicle weight or axle weight reduced by four hundred pounds.
Section 56-35-40. A violation of the provisions contained in this chapter is a nonmoving traffic offense that is punishable by:
(1) a warning ticket for an offense that occurs between July 1, 2008, to July 1, 2009; or
(2) a fine of seventy-five dollars for each offense that occurs after July 1, 2009.
Section 56-35-50. (A) The State Transport Police Division of the Department of Public Safety is primarily responsible for enforcing the provisions of this chapter. An officer or agent of the State Transport Police that observes a vehicle operator violating the provisions of this chapter is authorized to issue a citation to the offender. The provisions of this chapter do not apply to a commercial diesel vehicle idling on the premises of a restricted access facility or in areas on the private property of a business that are generally designed and intended for commercial vehicle access, loading or unloading when the facility or business is located at least five hundred feet away from any church, school, playground, daycare facility, or hospital.
(B) The officer must inform the individual receiving the citation that he has the option, at that time, to elect to pay his fine directly to the Department of Public Safety or to receive a hearing in magistrates court. If the individual at the time the citation is issued elects to pay his fine directly to the Department of Public Safety within twenty-eight days, as specified on the citation, no assessments may be added to the original fine pursuant to this section. The fine may be deposited with the arresting officer or a person the Department of Public Safety may designate. Within forty-five days of collection, fifty dollars of the monies collected by the Department of Public Safety must be forwarded to the Department of Health and Environmental Control for deposit in the Diesel Idling Reduction Fund, twenty-five dollars of the monies collected must be deposited into an account to be used by the Department of Public Safety's State Transport Police Division in support of the Idling Restrictions for Commercial Diesel Vehicles program which at the end of a fiscal year does not lapse to the general fund, but is instead carried forward to the succeeding fiscal year.
(C)(1) Magistrates have jurisdiction of all contested violations of this chapter. Where a contested hearing is requested, any fine imposed is subject to all assessments and surcharges applicable by law. The fine, surcharges, and assessments shall be distributed as set forth in the applicable law.
(2) If the fine is not paid in full to the Department of Public Safety within forty-five days after conviction, the driver's license of the vehicle operator found in violation of this chapter must be suspended. The suspension continues until the fine is paid in full.
(D) The State Transport Police shall use the citation form referenced in Section 56-1-4160(G) for idling violations. The Department of Public Safety must electronically transmit to the Department of Motor Vehicles all tickets issued pursuant to this section. The Department of Public Safety and the Department of Motor Vehicles must work together to develop an electronic exchange of information over the next two years.
Section 56-35-60. (A) There is established by the State Treasurer a fund separate and distinct from the general fund and all other funds entitled the Diesel Idling Reduction Fund. Fifty dollars of the fines pursuant to this section must be credited to it and a balance in the fund at the end of a fiscal year does not lapse to the general fund but is instead carried forward to the succeeding fiscal year. The monies in the fund must be used only to cover costs associated with the idling awareness program operated by the Department of Health and Environmental Control.
(B) The Department of Health and Environmental Control, as funds become available, may develop and operate an idling awareness program that promotes the benefits of idling reductions. The program must encourage businesses and vehicle operators to develop practices to reduce idling.
Section 56-35-70. The provisions of this chapter are the sole source of idling restrictions on commercial diesel vehicles in this State and this chapter is the sole source of penalties for violations of the idling restrictions. The provisions in this chapter supercede and preempt any ordinance enacted by a local political subdivision purporting to regulate idling on commercial diesel vehicles.
Section 56-35-80. The Department of Health and Environmental Control may promulgate regulations to administer and enforce the provisions of this chapter."
SECTION 7. Section 56-5-4160(G) and (H) of the 1976 Code, as last amended by Act 381 of 2006, is further amended to read:
"(G) The Department of Public Safety shall provide a separate uniform citation to be used by the State Transport Police Division of the Department of Public Safety. The uniform citation must be used for all size, weight, idling, and safety violations which the State Transport Police Division of the Department of Public Safety is primarily responsible for enforcing.
(H) The issuance of a uniform citation to the operator of a vehicle for a violation of this section, Section 58-23-1120, or Regulation 38-423, et seq., constitutes notice to the owner of the violation. The uniform citation must include the following language in bold letters to be printed across the bottom of the citation 'THE ISSUANCE OF A UNIFORM CITATION NOTICE TO THE OPERATOR OF A VEHICLE CONSTITUTES NOTICE TO THE OWNER OF A SIZE, WEIGHT, IDLING, OR SAFETY VIOLATION'."
SECTION 8. This act takes effect upon approval by the Governor.
Ratified the 15th day of May, 2008.
Became law without the signature of the Governor -- 5/22/08.
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