2006 Code of Virginia § 52-8.4 - Powers and duties to promulgate regulations; inspection of certain records

52-8.4. Powers and duties to promulgate regulations; inspection of certainrecords.

A. The Superintendent of State Police, with the cooperation of such otheragencies of the Commonwealth as may be necessary, shall promulgateregulations pertaining to commercial motor vehicle safety pursuant to theUnited States Motor Carrier Act of 1984. These regulations shall set forthcriteria relating to driver, vehicle, and cargo safety inspections with whichmotor carriers and transport vehicles shall comply, and shall be no morerestrictive than the applicable provisions of the Federal Motor CarrierSafety Regulations of the United States Department of Transportation. Theseregulations shall not apply to hours worked by any carrier when transportingpassengers or property to or from any portion of the Commonwealth for thepurpose of (i) providing relief or assistance in case of earthquake, flood,fire, famine, drought, epidemic, pestilence, or other calamity or disaster or(ii) engaging in the provision or restoration of utility services when theloss of such service is unexpected, unplanned or unscheduled. The suspensionof the regulation provided for in this subsection shall expire if theSecretary of the United States Department of Transportation determines thatit is in conflict with the intent of Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations.

B. For the purposes of this section:

"Commercial motor vehicle" means any self-propelled or towed vehicle usedon the highways in commerce to transport passengers or property if suchvehicle (i) has a gross vehicle weight rating or gross combination weightrating, or gross vehicle weight or gross combination weight, whichever isgreater, of more than 10,000 pounds when operated interstate or more than26,000 pounds when operated intrastate, (ii) is designed or used to transportmore than 15 passengers, including the driver, regardless of weight, or (iii)is used to transport hazardous materials in a quantity requiring placards byregulations issued under authority of Article 7 ( 10.1-1450 et seq.) ofChapter 14 of Title 10.1.

"Motor carrier" means a common carrier by motor vehicle, a contract carrierby motor vehicle, or a private carrier of property or passengers by motorvehicle. This term also encompasses any agent, officer, representative, oremployee who is responsible for the hiring, supervision, training,assignment, or dispatching of drivers.

"Transport vehicle" means any vehicle owned or leased by a motor carrierused in the transportation of goods or persons.

"Safety inspection" means the detailed examination of a vehicle forcompliance with safety regulations promulgated under this section andincludes a determination of the qualifications of the driver and his hours ofservice.

C. Except for those offenses listed in 52-8.4:2, any violation of theprovisions of the regulations adopted pursuant to this section shallconstitute a traffic infraction punishable by a fine of not more than $1,000for the first offense or by a fine of not more than $5,000 for a subsequentoffense. Each day of violation shall constitute a separate offense; however,any violation of any out-of-service order issued under authority of suchregulations or under authority of the Federal Motor Carrier Safetyregulations shall be punished as provided in 46.2-341.21 and thedisqualification provisions of 46.2-341.21 also shall apply to any driverso convicted.

D. The Department of State Police, together with all other law-enforcementofficers certified to perform vehicle safety inspections as defined by 46.2-1001 who have satisfactorily completed 40 hours of on-the-job trainingand a course of instruction as prescribed by the U.S. Department ofTransportation, Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, in federal motorcarrier safety regulations, safety inspection procedures, and out-of-servicecriteria, shall enforce the regulations and other requirements promulgatedpursuant to this section. Those law-enforcement officers certified to enforcethe regulations and other requirements promulgated pursuant to this sectionshall annually receive in-service training in current federal motor carriersafety regulations, safety inspection procedures, and out-of-service criteria.

E. Any records required to be maintained by motor carriers pursuant toregulations promulgated by the Superintendent under the authority ofsubsection A of this section shall be open to inspection during a carrier'snormal business hours by specially trained members of the Department of StatePolice specifically designated by the Superintendent. Members of theDepartment of State Police designated for that purpose by the Superintendentshall also be authorized, with the consent of the owner, operator, or agentin charge or with an appropriate warrant obtained under the procedureprescribed in Chapter 24 ( 19.2-393 et seq.) of Title 19.2, to go upon theproperty of motor carriers to verify the accuracy of maintenance records byan inspection of the vehicles to which those records relate.

(1986, c. 640; 1988, cc. 14, 718; 1990, cc. 24, 870; 1991, cc. 382, 505;1993, c. 108; 1994, c. 71; 1995, cc. 145, 151, 744, 803; 1996, c. 302; 1997,c. 283; 2002, c. 828; 2004, c. 23.)

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