2007 California Vehicle Code Chapter 1. General Provisions
CA Codes (veh:35000-35003)
35000. The provisions of this division refer exclusively to the
size and weight of, and loads upon, vehicles when operated upon the
35001. The provisions of this division, except those requiring a
permit for overweight loads, do not apply to motor trucks equipped
with snow removal devices.
35002. (a) (1) This division does not apply to any authorized
emergency vehicle owned or operated by a governmental agency while
being used in responding to and returning from emergency fire calls,
while being moved from place to place in anticipation of emergency
fire calls, when used during training in any fire service application
or during fire prevention activities, or when vehicles ordinarily
used for those purposes are necessarily transported for vehicle
maintenance, repair, or service. This subdivision only applies to
vehicles purchased prior to January 1, 1994. Vehicles purchased on
January 1, 1992, to and including December 31, 1993, shall meet the
applicable requirements of Standards 1901 to 1904, inclusive, of the
National Fire Protection Association, as those standards were in
effect on December 31, 1991.
(2) All vehicles described in paragraph (1) first purchased on or
after January 1, 1994, shall comply with the applicable permit
requirements adopted by the Department of Transportation.
(3) For purposes of this section, "purchased" means the date that
the operating agency enters into a contract to purchase the vehicle.
(b) All vehicles described in subdivision (a) purchased on or
after January 1, 1994, shall meet the following requirements:
(1) It shall be the responsibility of the manufacturer to provide
a gross axle weight rating (GAWR), gross combined weight rating
(GCWR), and gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR), adequate to carry a
full water tank with the allowance for personnel and miscellaneous
equipment, including hose load, shown in the table below:
Personnel Misc. Equipment
Pumpers 1,200 lbs. 2,000 lbs.
apparatus 600 lbs. 900 lbs.
Water towers 1,200 lbs. 1,500 lbs.
with ground ladders 1,200 lbs. 2,500 lbs.
with ground ladders 1,200 lbs. 2,500 lbs.
Fire apparatus shall be weighed and certified by the manufacturer to
determine compliance with the table above prior to acceptance by the
purchaser. Apparatus and chassis manufacturers shall furnish
certification of the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR), gross
combined weight rating (GCWR), and gross axle weight rating (GAWR) on
a nameplate affixed to the apparatus.
(2) Any fire apparatus exceeding 31,000 pounds gross vehicle
weight rating (GVWR) shall be equipped with a retarder.
(3) For purposes of this section, a "fire apparatus" is any
vehicle or combination of vehicles designed, maintained, and used
exclusively for the suppression of fires or for fire prevention
activities, including the training of firefighters. A tank vehicle
owned by a regularly organized fire suppression agency and used to
transport water or other fire suppression materials is a fire
apparatus. A vehicle or combination of vehicles which is not
designed primarily for fire suppression, including, but not limited
to, a hazardous materials response vehicle, dedicated rescue vehicle,
command post communications vehicle, passenger vehicle, bus, mobile
kitchen, mobile sanitation facility, and heavy equipment transport
vehicle, are not a fire apparatus for purposes of this section.
(c) A vehicle owned, operated, or rented by any public agency
which is being used in responding to or returning from an emergency,
may be operated as required, if a reasonable effort is first made by
the agency to obtain verbal permission from an authorized officer or
employee of the agency having jurisdiction of the highways used, and,
upon termination of the emergency, when the vehicle is returning
from the site of the emergency, the public agency either obtains a
permit at the location of the emergency or makes a reasonable effort
to obtain verbal permission from an authorized officer or employee of
the agency having jurisdiction of the highways used, and obtains a
written permit for that use pursuant to Section 35780 not later than
three days after the date of the emergency. As used in this
subdivision, "emergency" means a condition which poses an imminent
threat of loss of property or a hazard to life, as determined by the
public agency charged with responsibility to respond thereto.
(d) Any governmental agency operating an authorized emergency
vehicle or other vehicle subject to this section is liable to the
governmental agency having jurisdiction of any state or county
highway for any damage to the highway or any highway structure caused
by the operation of the vehicle of a size or weight of vehicle or
load exceeding that specified in this division. The cost of repair
of the damage is a proper charge against the support fund of the
governmental agency operating the oversize or overweight vehicle.
(e) Neither the state nor any agency thereof is liable for damage
to any highway or highway structure caused by vehicles operated,
pursuant to this section, by or on behalf of a local authority or any
other local governmental entity.
35003. For the purpose of this division, booms, masts, machinery or
other equipment which is not attendant to the efficient operation of
the body of the vehicle but which may be attached to the body or
chassis or connected with the driving mechanism, shall be regarded as
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