If you are working as a CDL driver, you already knew the term CDL DOT weigh stations. Moreover, if your truck weighs over than standard, you will face a serious fine. Thus, in this article, we are going to give you in-depth information about CDL DOT Weigh Stations, how it works as well as answer some FAQs for CDL drivers. Let’s get started now!


truck cdl dot weigh stations
How CDL DOT weigh stations looks like


1. What is CDL DOT weigh stations?

Overall, CDL DOT weigh stations stand for the Department of Transportation’s checkpoint for the weight of each commercial vehicle passing through and following the state’s laws and safety guidelines. In brief, the DOT weigh station is used for 2 primary purposes:

  • Check for the net weight of a truck 
  • Assess truck and trailer security, including all parts of vehicles as well as drivers’ credentials. They might run a drug test to identify drug and alcohol abuse signs. The DOT can perform a visual evaluation at many levels ranging from the first (most intense) to the sixth (the foremost fundamental). 


2. Who needs to check at the CDL DOT weigh stations?

In most cases, all of the CDL drivers need to stop at the DOT weigh stations to inspect their weight and security. Specifically, if you are hauling a truck with a gross weight rate of 10,000 pounds or bigger, you need to halt at the CDL DOT stations. 

However, the rules can vary in states. Some states may set the number higher than 10,000 pounds, thus, CDL drivers should pay attention to your state DOT requirements and understand them carefully to follow the rules perfectly because it can totally affect your career. To know how can DOT affects CDL driver’s careers, you can take overlook the recommended article.


3. What is the procedure at the CDL DOT weigh stations?

Firstly, drivers should keep an eye out for signs indicating the presence of a weigh station as they pass down the road. The signs will direct you to the weigh station and indicate whether it is open or closed. The motorist is not obligated to stop if a weigh station is closed. If the weigh station is operating, signage will show you the speed restriction you must follow when pulling in. That speed restriction is not a recommendation; it is the law.


If there are other trucks at the weigh station, take your place and wait for your turn. Follow all signs and heed all instructions and orders provided to you by weigh station personnel.  In addition,  you should follow the designated speed limit when you drive over the scale in front of other drivers. Also, obey any directions for stopping or slowing down as you approach the scale. If you refuse to comply, you are making a very foolish decision that will create unnecessary delays and frustration for all other vehicles at the weigh station.


Following that, your truck will be weighed, and you may have your equipment or ELD examined. If you are examined and have issues with your vehicle or your ELD, you may be subjected to a more thorough examination. This can result in lengthy delays.


Personnel at the weigh station may enter your CDL DOT number into a computer and check your safety rating to confirm that you’re keeping your log accurate.


If everything is in order and your equipment is in great shape, the entire of your process will not take too much of your time. 


cdl dot weigh stations
A large scale to measure your truck weight


4. What will happen if your truck is overweight?

In case your truck is overweight, you will face an assortment of results. The penalties will vary depending on the state but there will be some common factors that you will be checked:


4.1. Delay 

First and foremost, your time will be affected by the inspection time. If you are hauling your truck to your customer or have a deadline to complete your job, unluckily, you are on the edge of missing it. Thus, contact your customer or your boss to tell them about the overweight problems and estimate the inspection completion time. 


4.2. Fine

Obviously, you will be fined for your overweight situation. The penalties will vary depending on which state are you driving in. However, it will be ranged from $100 to $10,000 per offense. For instance, in Rhode Island, there will be a charge of $125/pound for your false. Thus, it can be up to $57,000 for one single fine, which is seven times higher than the standard weight. Hence, don’t try to haul as much as material you can, because the penalty for your mistake is madly expensive. Moreover, Minnesota has its own overweight penalties rules: for 1,000 to 1,999 overweight pounds, you need to pay a $100 and a $75 surcharge

In addition, you should strictly follow the CDL DOT weigh stations rules, because if you repeat your mistake, there will be double or triple the standard amount of money.  

For more DOT weigh stations penalties, you can track them on the oversize website. 


4.3. Detention 

Driving with an overweight truck is an organized trip to prison in a few states in the United States, with a term of up to two months. In addition to the prison terms, states will revoke a driver’s CDL as part of the legal procedure.


dot weigh scale
Don’t try to carry overweight because you might be detention


5. What are the FAQs about the CDL DOT weigh stations? 


5.1. Who will pay for the fines of CDL DOT weigh stations? 

A driver is always responsible for any driving violation unless there is a statement in the contract that the company will cover all fines. 


5.2. What will happen if you drive over the CDL DOT weigh stations?

If you exceed the recognized weight limit, the penalties might range from detention to having your permission revoked to a significant fine. If you are found with an overweight stack many times, the punishment might be doubled or tripled depending on the severity. There are several programs and tools available to aid you to plan your journey so that you have the necessary grants to avoid excessive penalties and punishments.


5.3. Will you receive penalty points for driving an overweight truck?

Actually, your CDL will be recorded and you will be fined if you are caught. However, depending on your state that you will receive the point or not.


5.4. What are the CDL DOT weigh station hours of operation?

It usually maintains operation 24 hours a day and 7 days a week.


5.5. Do local drivers have to stop at CDL DOT weigh station?

Yes. All drivers must stop if the truck’s GVWR exceeds 26,001 pounds.


Above is all the information on CDL DOT weigh stations that CDL drivers should know to have a safe driving trip. We hope that this article is helpful for your truck career. However, if you are planning to achieve a CDL, you totally can practice on our CDL Practice Test to earn a high score!