Enforcing commercial vehicle safety

CVSE officers are peace officers and safety is our number one priority.

You may have seen a couple vehicles in town with the acronym CVSE on the side and wondered what exactly that means. CVSE stands for Commercial Vehicle Safety and Enforcement, and the vehicles belong to the weigh scales (inspection stations) on Highways 1 and 7. CVSE are a branch of the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure.

CVSE officers are peace officers and safety is our number one priority. The province is committed to ensuring that commercial trucks operating on our provincial highways meet all safety requirements.

Our mandate is to ensure the safety of commercial vehicles on provincial highways. CVSE officers enforce six acts and their regulations, most notably the Commercial Transport Act and the Motor Vehicle act. We deal with dangerous goods movements, drivers’ log books, vehicle inspections, oversize and overweight vehicles, licensing and moving violations such as not stopping at brake checks, bypassing the scales or speeding. We also have the ability to weigh trucks almost anywhere using portable scales.There are over 240 CVSE field staff across B.C. Of the hundreds of thousands of vehicles we see, we target approximately 30,000 vehicles a year for closer inspections.

A common question is: what happens when the inspection stations are closed? The simple answer is trucks are allowed to stay on the highway. Our scales and outside reader boards are always left on so trucks can come in to weigh and adjust their weights if necessary.

The eastbound site on Highway 1 at Laidlaw is equipped with a weigh-in-motion system which weighs, measures and checks vehicle licensing and safety credentials while the truck is moving at highway speed. There’s a concrete pad on the highway which houses the weigh-in-motion scale just before the eastbound site. This system, combined with readers at other scales throughout the province, allows trucks with good safety records to avoid coming into the scales every trip – saving them time, fuel and money.

If you need a vehicle weighed for insurance purposes or are just curious how much your vehicle weighs, feel free to bring it out to any of the stations and we can weigh it for you. Over the years, we have weighed all kinds of things – the strangest being a pair of large Clydesdale horses. Questions regarding gross vehicle weight for pickups with campers or recreational trailers can also be directed our way. For more information, visit CVSE online at www.cvse.ca.

Les Unrau

CVSE supervisor