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MTO issues W&D; update on 53' self-steer quad axle trailers
Source: Today's Trucking

TORONTO, (Sept. 2, 2005) -- The Ontario Ministry of Transportation has updated its Vehicle Weight and Dimension Phase 3 regulations, requiring 53-ft self-steer quads to be marked as SPIF trailers.

Self-steer quad semi-trailers up to 48 feet were placed into law in January 2001 as part of Phase 1 of VW&D; Reforms by amendments to Highway Traffic Act Regulation 597.

Part of the requirement, explains Ron Madill, W&D; Reforms project lead at the MTO's Freight Policy Office, was that the trailer must be labelled by the manufacturer with the notation "Reg 597(Ont)-4" signifying that they built the trailer to the required specifications. At the same time, up to 500 53-ft self-steer quad semi-trailers were allowed on a trial basis under special annual permits, and no labelling was required -- although some manufacturers applied the label anyway.

Regulation 597 has now been revoked and replaced with Regulation 413/05, which incorporates the first three phases of VW&D; reforms. This regulation, Madill tells TodaysTrucking,com, now allows self-steer quads up to 53 feet, although -- as with all self-steer axle equipped SPIF semi-trailers -- the semi-trailer must bear the notation "SPIF" (or optionally "Reg 597(Ont)-3" or "Reg 597(Ont) 4" for trailers built prior to 2006) on the compliance label or on the manufacturer's identification plate.

No further new or renewal special permits will be issued for 53 ft self-steer quads.

If an operator has an existing vehicle under permit, he should make sure their trailer is labelled as properly before the permit expires to satisfy the requirements of the regulation, Madill advises. If the trailer is not labelled, the operator should make arrangements with the trailer OEM to have this notation added to the trailer before the existing permit expires.

Unless the vehicle is operating under a valid special permit, a 53-ft quad may not legally operate on Ontario highways unless it meets all the requirements of Regulation 413/05, including the labelling.

Labelling requirements are spelled out in Section 13 of the regulation. This can be viewed at the following site: http://www.e-laws.gov.on.ca/DBLaws/Regs/English/050413_e.htm.

Ontario Ministry of Transportation