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Old 03-04-2014, 04:05 PM   #407
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The reason I asked was some time back it came up in a conversation and a couple of guys that seemed to be up on the rules at least here in Washington said any advertising on a trailer was considered a commercial venture and had to be licensed as a commercial vehicle as well as the TV. Seeing all of those plain white car trailers go going up and down I-5 to Mission Raceways got me thinking they must have been right.
That is what we were told as well back in around 2008. It may have been a scare tactic to get people to re-register their vehicles as commercial to drum up more revenue, I don't know for certain as I am only speculating, but in the end most people around here merely are towing plain, un-lettered trailers and using them as normal.

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Old 03-04-2014, 04:17 PM   #408
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I would think if it was not true there would be a lot of sponsor advertising on the trailers. Seeing none I tend to believe its true.
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Old 03-04-2014, 04:31 PM   #409
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The reason I asked was some time back it came up in a conversation and a couple of guys that seemed to be up on the rules at least here in Washington said any advertising on a trailer was considered a commercial venture and had to be licensed as a commercial vehicle as well as the TV. Seeing all of those plain white car trailers go going up and down I-5 to Mission Raceways got me thinking they must have been right.

I have checked with the federal Motor Carriers Safety guy and the Ohio DOT as I had concerns about putting a racing logo on the side of my trailer. They both assured me that commercial or DOT numbers were not determined by signs on the side of the trailer, but the type of use.

That is not to say that the local DOT officer knows those rules, and will issue you a citation, which will ruin your day. At the time I was pulling the trailer with my pickup and was not over length, now wit the MH I am, so I may pull the signs back off so as not to attract attention.
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Old 03-04-2014, 06:00 PM   #410
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Did you ask him if traveling to and from a racing event with sponsor information on the trailer would be exempt? I doubt if having Lever Racing on the sides would be a issue but if you had commercial business sponsor names on there the interpretation of "use" might change.
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Old 03-04-2014, 07:30 PM   #411
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Did you ask him if traveling to and from a racing event with sponsor information on the trailer would be exempt? I doubt if having Lever Racing on the sides would be a issue but if you had commercial business sponsor names on there the interpretation of "use" might change.
I have no sponsors, and no business related to the dragster. I also do not have the not for hire sign as that gains you nothing.

If you had a sponsor or had income based on racing that would change everything.
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Old 03-04-2014, 09:12 PM   #412
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Beautiful rig. How does your 43' Diplomat tow the trailer? Cummins 425 ISL? How long is your trailer? Mike.
Awesome!!!
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Old 03-05-2014, 04:40 AM   #413
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I am not sure, and neither are the Enforcement Officers, about the rules and enforcement of length and "commercial" status.
I own Trailer Toad.com personally. Is it a business, yes, but the trailer is registered in my name and is not deducted from income taxes. I explained that to the DOT officer and he understood that, especially after I showed him the registration and insurance card.
The length was an issue accroding to him so I FIXED THAT. I got an Iowa Oversize Permit. $29.00 for a year and I am looking into them for the states I expect to travel in. Cheap way to at least show the DOT you tried to meet the confusing rules.


As for white trailers, a lot of racers are struggling to get sponsors and why put decals on the trailer if you aren't paid to do so. The decals also "kill the resale" value of the trailer as they are hard to get off and almost always still show where they were when they are removed.


If you are commercial, you are commercial. If you are a private entity then you are not commercial. If you deduct your trailer, coach or your racing, off-roading, fishing tournament expense, etc from your taxes as a business, you could be considered commercial.


My stand is this. I do deduct my racing from my taxes as advertising for my company, Trailer Toad. I, however, do not get paid to travel to a race event. If I get lucky I may cover some expenses with winnings but that is far different than "if you are for hire" and "compensated with income to haul the trailer to an event", like the Pro racers or guys that do trade shows, etc


I do have a Class A Commercial Drivers License with air brake endorsement. Why? ...Why not? I keep an accurate log book and treat my travel as if it is a commercial enterprise, proper safety equipment, flares, spare fuses, etc, etc. It may or may not help if I get an overzealous Enforcement Officer but I am not going to let the Federal or State Government control any more of my life, I am over it and them. I will follow as many "rules" as I can, after that ... I will see you at the races and the RV Parks around the Country.


Safe travels to all of you!
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Old 03-05-2014, 09:20 AM   #414
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Jok,

A FWIW about your commercial DL endorsement. I operated large mobile cranes for 35 years so I had lots of experience with the oversize load permitting and commercial licenses.

Federal DOT regulations require that you have a valid DOT physical card on your person for your CDL to be valid. Without that card your CDL is not valid. The DOT physical must be done every two years. I left mine in my car once and got checked. The officer was reasonable and did a computer check to see that I did have one so he said park the crane here and call your office and have someone bring the card here so I can see it and I won't write you up.

Here in Washington they will only issue over length permits that are valid for 3 days and only for loads that are not reduceable. If it can be made shorter no permit. If I was on a job for more than 3 days I had to have a new permit to get back to the yard. I was usually 80' long 12' wide and weighted 145,000 pounds. Many axles and 2 pilot cars (-:
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Old 03-05-2014, 10:31 AM   #415
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I have a yearly physical with my private doctor and my doctor fills out the forms for the DOT physical (DOT cards are good for two years).

You can elect to carry the forms or pay to get the card (I carried a small briefcase with the required books for hazmat and FMCSA) , having the doctor fill out the DOT forms does not cost anything.

In all the years of driving gas tankers (permitted over weight at 107,000 pounds) I was never asked to produce the DOT card.

I think it is a slipper slope when you start to comply with the rules for commercial compliance, the further you go the more they will think you are commercial.

Here over length and over weight is tricky, in the case of the over weight permit it was just a piece of paper issued every year and was attached to the title of the truck.

It depends on the usage, the over length and over weight can also be issued for a period of time and can also restrict the routes and the times you can travel them.

I'm with you TrailerToad1
"I do have a Class A Commercial Drivers License with air brake endorsement. Why? ...Why not? I keep an accurate log book and treat my travel as if it is a commercial enterprise, proper safety equipment, flares, spare fuses, etc, etc. It may or may not help if I get an overzealous Enforcement Officer but I am not going to let the Federal or State Government control any more of my life, I am over it and them. I will follow as many "rules" as I can, after that ... I will see you at the races and the RV Parks around the Country."

I'm not sure I would keep the log book as it might be interpreted as a indicator of commercial use.

I think the thing that will hurt you the most is
"
My stand is this. I do deduct my racing from my taxes as advertising for my company, Trailer Toad. I, however, do not get paid to travel to a race event. If I get lucky I may cover some expenses with winnings but that is far different than "if you are for hire" and "compensated with income to haul the trailer to an event", like the Pro racers or guys that do trade shows, etc"

Compensation is what is used to determine the requirement for a DOT number and "occasional use". DOT considers anything as compensation, trophies, ribbons, winnings, etc. Not if you make money doing what you are doing, but if you received ANY compensation.

I'm 72 feet long and have "Throttle Stop Racing" sign on the side of the trailer, I have a CDL A, with DOT
physical forms. I have won some races, but never picked up any winnings, or filed and money's on my income tax.

If they cite me then I will fight that battle if I can.
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Old 03-05-2014, 12:47 PM   #416
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Something I learned about my CDL and DOT physical card is they are ONLY valid when I am driving commercially. If I am not neither has any legal standing. Driving my MH they have no legal standing and do not exist. Retired guys that pick up a few extra dollars moving motorhomes from one place to another for dealers are supposed to have a CDL and DOT physical card but my bet is most don't.
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Old 03-05-2014, 01:21 PM   #417
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This subject is beat to death, let's see MHs and trailers behind them.
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Old 03-05-2014, 01:47 PM   #418
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I think the thing that will hurt you the most is
"
My stand is this. I do deduct my racing from my taxes as advertising for my company, Trailer Toad. I, however, do not get paid to travel to a race event. If I get lucky I may cover some expenses with winnings but that is far different than "if you are for hire" and "compensated with income to haul the trailer to an event", like the Pro racers or guys that do trade shows, etc"

Compensation is what is used to determine the requirement for a DOT number and "occasional use". DOT considers anything as compensation, trophies, ribbons, winnings, etc. Not if you make money doing what you are doing, but if you received ANY compensation.
GlennLever, I'm sure as a racer you are aware this debate pops up often. As stated in the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, question #21 talks about exceptions;

"The exemption would apply to this kind of transportation, provided: (1) The underlying activities are not undertaken for profit, i.e., (a) prize money is declared as ordinary income for tax purposes, and (b) the cost of the underlying activities is not deducted as a business expense for tax purposes; and, where relevant; (2) corporate sponsorship is not involved. Drivers must confer with their State of licensure to determine the licensing provisions to which they are subject."

If you claim your winnings as income, don't right off your expenses as a business and are not being paid by a corporate sponsor to race you are not considered commercial and therefore exempt. So.... depending on how Jok "claims" the money he receives from Trailer Toad, he may not be in violation. BTW, I know several racers who have this printed out and carry it with them in case they are pulled over by DOT. And yes we are off topic, but I felt this needed to be corrected. Good luck at the track!
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Old 03-05-2014, 01:53 PM   #419
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This subject is beat to death, let's see MHs and trailers behind them.
Seems like a prudent request.
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Old 03-05-2014, 02:14 PM   #420
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GlennLever, I'm sure as a racer you are aware this debate pops up often. As stated in the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, question #21 talks about exceptions;

"The exemption would apply to this kind of transportation, provided: (1) The underlying activities are not undertaken for profit, i.e., (a) prize money is declared as ordinary income for tax purposes, and (b) the cost of the underlying activities is not deducted as a business expense for tax purposes; and, where relevant; (2) corporate sponsorship is not involved. Drivers must confer with their State of licensure to determine the licensing provisions to which they are subject."

If you claim your winnings as income, don't right off your expenses as a business and are not being paid by a corporate sponsor to race you are not considered commercial and therefore exempt. So.... depending on how Jok "claims" the money he receives from Trailer Toad, he may not be in violation. BTW, I know several racers who have this printed out and carry it with them in case they are pulled over by DOT. And yes we are off topic, but I felt this needed to be corrected. Good luck at the track!
I do exactly that, carry question 21, with me along with copies of the e-mails between the Northeastern head of FMCSA and Ohio DOT.

A fine distinction should be noted here Question 21 has to do with DOT numbers, not length or if you are commercial.

Never had to present the copies or been stopped.

Let's see MH's with trailers behind them.

I'm leaving for Florida Saturday and will be pulling our brand new trailer for the Jeep. It has not been on the MH yet, but when it is I promise pictures.

As it turns out we will not have one son house sitting, but both. The youngest son just quit his job and will be using the shop to work on his bikes.
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