How do truck weigh stations help avoid accidents?

You probably pass by Tennessee truck weigh stations often, perhaps even on a daily basis. However, if you do not drive a vehicle required to stop at a weigh station, you may not know what goes on there. 

As suggested by the name, weigh stations monitor the weight of the truck's cargo as well as the trucks themselves, the purpose of which is partly to ensure that the weight of the truck falls within safety guidelines. However, a news team from FOX13 Memphis discovered that this is not the only safety measure taken at truck weigh stations. Authorities also routinely perform inspections of both the driver and the truck in the interest of preventing accidents. 

Human factors

Human factors, such as driver fatigue, unqualified drivers and drivers who do not have the proper license, are the cause of most crashes. Therefore, authorities performing inspections at Tennessee weigh stations receive certification and training in recognizing whether a driver may pose a threat and removing those that demonstrate warning signs from the road. 

Vehicle safety defects

Sometimes the vehicle itself may pose a hazard to other vehicles on the road due to defects including the following:

  • Broken springs
  • Flat tires
  • Deflated air suspension
  • Broken frames

In the past, unsafe trucks have caused deaths on Tennessee roadways. When authorities at the weigh station recognize a hazardous defect on a truck, they do not allow the truck driver to leave the station until the vehicle receives service, then they perform another inspection to verify that the repair is complete and the defect no longer poses a threat.

Were it not for weigh stations, more trucks with unsafe defects might remain on the road. The percentages of drivers and vehicles placed out of service at Tennessee weigh stations is consistent with national statistics. 

The information in this article is not intended as legal advice but provided for educational purposes only.

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