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Old 12-28-2020, 09:14 PM   #15
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Common sense, though increasingly rare in this country, would dictate that it is important to have a rig that is safe to use on the highways regardless of the vehicle codes which vary state by state. I do not worry about getting cited but I do concern myself with being able to stop my vehicle and anything attached to the hitch receiver in as short a distance as possible. Adding 40% to the load to be stopped by the brakes it would be foolish to rely 100% on the tow vehicle's brakes alone.
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Old 12-28-2020, 10:12 PM   #16
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In Texas even a triple tow is permitted, providing that the maximum length of all vehicles, trailers and items towed do not exceed 65 feet in length. Im not aware of specific laws re vehicle towing from our DMV or the Department of Public Safety site. So state law prevails in each state and hope common sense reigns supreme (i.e. length, safety equipment, and speed).
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Old 12-29-2020, 09:58 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by NXR View Post
I suspect that the intent of the law is to allow tow trucks to move vehicles without the vehicle needing to have its braking system active. Because maybe it's being towed because its brakes do not work.

Ray
Actually, what you describe is mentioned in items 1 and 2 of the exclusions, but item 3 is a separate and distinct listing of "towed motor vehicle."

Bottom line, my interpretation of the vehicle code, in California, is that "toads" are not trailers.
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Old 12-29-2020, 11:08 AM   #18
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Tow dollys are towed equipment, like small rental cement mixers, stump grinders,....

Never seen plates on them.
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Old 12-29-2020, 11:46 AM   #19
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Well, so far i have seen alot of opinions on why people use or should want to have toad brakes.
However, that was not the topic. The topic was, is a toad a trailer for purposes of trailer brake laws in Washington or Idaho.
The reason for me and maybe others who have toads under 3000lbs and live and rv in the rocky mountains and west is that idaho seems to be the only state with a less than 3000 lb trailer brake law. All the rest either are 3000 lb or have a stopping distance rule.
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Old 12-29-2020, 01:05 PM   #20
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Well, so far i have seen alot of opinions on why people use or should want to have toad brakes.
However, that was not the topic. The topic was, is a toad a trailer for purposes of trailer brake laws in Washington or Idaho.
The reason for me and maybe others who have toads under 3000lbs and live and rv in the rocky mountains and west is that idaho seems to be the only state with a less than 3000 lb trailer brake law. All the rest either are 3000 lb or have a stopping distance rule.
You may have to do some digging into the vehicle codes for each state, such as I did for California, to actually draw a logical conclusion. It required several different code sections to put together a coherent (in my opinion) answer for California.

The following may help:

RCW 46.37.340

"Every motor vehicle, trailer, semitrailer, and pole trailer, and any combination of such vehicle operating upon a highway within this state shall be equipped with brakes in compliance with the requirements of this chapter.

Braking equipment required. "(3) Brakes on all wheels. Every vehicle shall be equipped with brakes acting on all wheels except: "(c) Any vehicle being towed in driveaway or towaway operations, provided the combination of vehicles is capable of complying with the performance requirements of RCW 46.37.351;"

RCW 46.04.165
Driveaway-towaway operation.
"Driveaway-towaway operation" means any operation in which any motor vehicle, trailer or semitrailer, singly or in combination, new or used, constitutes the commodity being transported when one set or more wheels of any such vehicle are on the roadway during the course of transportation, whether or not any such vehicle furnishes the motive power.

(7) “Motor vehicle” means any vehicle which is self-propelled and every vehicle which is propelled by electric power obtained from overhead trolley wires, but not operated on rails."

From the above, I would conclude that a toad is not a trailer in Washington, and is not required to have an operating or supplemental braking system if the combination of vehicles can stop in the required distances.

Not a lawyer. For academic consideration only.

https://www.codepublishing.com/WA/Hu...otor%20vehicle.

https://apps.leg.wa.gov/rcw/default.aspx?cite=46.37.340

https://app.leg.wa.gov/RCW/default.a...such%20vehicle
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Old 01-01-2021, 09:40 AM   #21
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A major wrinkle in this issue is that nearly every state has specific laws about towing vehicles that are often in direct conflict with their general trailer & towing laws. Those laws probably are intended to deal with tow trucks and disabled vehicles, but the letter of those laws typically cites "towed vehicle" or similar wording that makes it applicable to RVs & toads. A further complication is that many states do not consider a tow dolly (vehicle or semi-trailer type) to be a trailer at all, making it doubtful that any trailer laws apply. Ljwt330 gives a good example of the myriad of laws that may apply in a given state.
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Old 01-01-2021, 10:08 AM   #22
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I will add one more thing, specifically to the OP's request for information regarding Washington.

Though I cited the Washington State vehicle code and concluded that toads are not considered trailers, the OP was concerned about brake requirements. The code, unlike that for California, specifically exempts the need for brakes on the towed vehicle if the combination of vehicles is able to stop within the distance requirements set by the state. Is the OP willing to test the stopping distance of his rig, and, most important, is he able to prove that the combination of rig/toad complies? Unless there is a way that Washington will supply a certification that the combination rig/toad meets the stopping standards, liability from an accident, both legal and civil, is a very real possibility.

Common sense and safety should lead to the conclusion that adding a braking system to the toad is the simplest way to address this issue, IMO.
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