Commercial Vehicle Services - Enforcement

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Performance analysis


Electronic screening identifies over 4.5 million potential violations in 2022

Electronic screening is a pre-clearance system that helps automate the Washington State Patrol inspection process by checking vehicles for violations as they approach the weigh station. All vehicles are screened for weight and height violations. Vehicles identified by license plate or transponder are also screened on credential violations such as an expired registration. The system helps enforcement target high-risk carriers.

Over 8.6 million commercial vehicles were identified and electronically screened by the Washington State Patrol in 2022. Of these, the system notified WSP of over 4.5 million potential violations.

Washington receives grant for a tire risk detection system

Washington State Patrol received a federal grant to purchase and install a Tire Anomaly and Classification System (TACS) at the five ports of entry. The equipment is scheduled to be installed at Plymouth, Bow Hill, Spokane, Ridgefield and Cle Elum in 2023.

TACS uses pressure-sensitive in-road sensors to detect missing, mismatched, or underinflated tires while commercial vehicles travel at freeway speeds. If a potential violation is identified, the system will direct the vehicle to exit at a weigh station and provide a diagram of which tires state troopers should inspect. The system is designed to improve safety by preventing accidents that result from commercial vehicle tire issues.


WSDOT expands commercial safety program

WSDOT works with the Department of Licensing, Washington State Patrol and Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration to further commercial vehicle safety.

In December 2021, Washington became the first state-certified as an Expanded Performance Registration Information Systems Management participant. The program is designed to reduce commercial vehicle crashes, injuries, and fatalities by exchanging real-time information regarding commercial vehicles with serious safety deficiencies.

Full participation in PRISM includes meeting six requirements that apply to commercial vehicles that are 26,001 pounds or more. The expanded program includes the full participation requirements plus six additional requirements and commercial vehicles 26,000 pounds and under. Other states can now identify safety records for any Washington commercial vehicle weighing over 10,000 pounds.

If warranted, these states can deny registration and enable enforcement to execute federal out-of-service orders that cite the violations that may prohibit a driver, vehicle or both from operating.


WSDOT and WSP work together on commercial vehicle enforcement

WSDOT works with the Washington State Patrol to develop and maintain a commercial vehicle enforcement system that:

  • Identifies high-risk commercial carriers,
  • Protects basic highway infrastructure by screening for overweight commercial vehicles, and
  • Maintains a system that allows safe and legal carriers the opportunity to bypass weigh stations after successfully completing an electronic screening.

The two agencies have also created a Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Systems Strategic Plan that presents Washington's approach to continuing effective and efficient commercial vehicle enforcement.


WSDOT receives highest possible marks in federal compliance review

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration gave WSDOT its highest possible marks with no areas for improvement after their December 2019 on-site review of WSDOT's Innovative Technology Deployment systems. To achieve this, WSDOT had to meet requirements in the four categories reviewed:

  • Data Quality Performance Measures,
  • Certification and Recertification,
  • Production Operations, and
  • Programmatic Requirements.

Representatives of WSDOT, the Department of Licensing, Washington State Patrol and FMCSA attended the on-site review.

FMCSA also publishes monthly state data quality evaluation results that measure baselines, timeliness, completeness, accuracy and validity of commercial vehicle data. Washington is consistently a national leader in data quality and received a perfect score every month from January 2018 to October 2019 in the monthly data evaluations.


WSDOT screens commercial vehicles

The Innovative Technology Deployment program (formerly known as Commercial Vehicle Information Systems and Networks) designs, implements and maintains the electronic screening systems used by the Washington State Patrol for commercial vehicle enforcement. The program uses technology along state highways to identify, weigh, and examine vehicles for violations while in motion to assist officers with targeted enforcement of high-risk carriers.

Restricting vehicles pulling into weigh stations to primarily high risk carriers increases the likelihood of WSP finding the vehicles that need to be put out of service. It also saves both time and money for safe and legal carriers who are required to stop less frequently.

WSDOT works closely with the Washington State Patrol

WSDOT works closely with the Washington State Patrol to install and maintain the hardware and software law enforcement uses to target high risk carriers. The Weigh Station Strategic Plan and Joint Operations Policy Statement outline electronic screening goals and agency responsibilities.

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