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· Type B highways have lower design standards than Type A highways, but they are included in the primary network. Due to their geometric and structural characteristics, they serve inter- state transportation. Type B highways can be designated as B2 (two lanes) or B4 (four lanes). · Type C highways form the secondary roadway network. Due to their design characteristics, they serve medium trip lengths within states, establishing connections and links with the primary network. · Type D highways form the feeder network and serve traffic within municipalities. They serve relatively short trip lengths, establishing con- nections with the secondary network (Type C Figure 6 T3-S3-S2 LCV used in Mexico. highways). LCVs are allowed only on ET, A, and B high- ers. The T3-S3-S2 in Figure 6 operates under a spe- ways, but single trailer combinations with 16.2-m cial permit to haul steel between Monterrey, Mexico, (53-ft) semitrailers are only allowed on ET high- and the Port of Brownsville, Texas. Since recent size ways. Weight and size limits depend on the highway and weight increases in Mexico have focused largely type and the vehicle characteristics. on LCVs, this digest will cover LCVs in some detail along with weight and dimensional changes, includ- ASSESSMENT OF MEXICO'S TRUCK SIZE ing when these changes occurred. AND WEIGHT REGULATIONS Evolution of Current Size Mexican Highway Classification and Weight Limits Not all commercial vehicles can operate through- LCVs have been allowed to travel on Mexican out the Mexican roadway network. The first version federal highways since 1980, but significant changes of the RPD included a definition of the Mexican road- have occurred since then. Many of those changes way network. This regulation, which was developed were induced by economic or technical reasons, but by the SCT, established the following highway clas- many others were the consequence of pressure from sifications: ET, A, B, C, and D. A description of each various groups, including the private-sector shipper roadway classification follows: association, ANTP, which benefits from larger and · ET, or "transportation axis" highways, are the heavier trucks. highest category of roadways in Mexico. ET Vehicle weights and dimensions in Mexico are highways are those that have geometric and regulated based on highway classification, vehicle structural characteristics that can accommodate type, axle configuration, number of wheels per the operation of vehicles with the maximum axle, and suspension type. NOM-012-SCT-2-2008 dimensions, capacity, and weight. Addition- includes a list of highway segments that have some ally, the SCT authorizes other general-interest type of exemption. The exemption is usually an vehicles to operate on ET highways. ET high- upgrade of the highway type to allow heavier or larger ways can be designated ET2 (two lanes) or ET4 commercial vehicles. Exemptions are granted to (four lanes). facilitate highway connectivity or provide access to · Type A highways allow for the operation of all specific industrial or distribution centers. vehicles authorized with the maximum dimen- There is also a mechanism to obtain a special per- sions, capacity, and weight except those that by mit to travel on highway segments with a vehicle that their dimensions and weight are only allowed does not comply with the route's standards. These on ET highways. Type A highways can be des- permits are granted for LCVs that need to serve dis- ignated as A2 (two lanes) or A4 (four lanes). tribution or production centers that are inaccessible 7
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with a high-standard road. In these cases, a special by reducing the impact coefficient. This is one rea- authorization has to be requested from the SCT, and son why the resulting GVW does not comply with the request must be accompanied with evidence that the bridge formula. Additionally, in order to obtain there are no alternative routes or that there is no other the extra axle weight allowance, commercial vehi- vehicle configuration allowed that could economi- cles must comply with the following operating con- cally travel that route segment. These permits are dition requirements: valid for 5 years and involve no fee. · Trucks must not exceed a speed of 80 km/h. Figure 7 presents a timeline showing when the · Trucks must travel in the right-hand lane. most important rules and regulations pertaining to · Lights must be on during the entire trip. truck size and weight in Mexico became effective. · Trucks must be separated by a 100-m gap. Table 2 includes a brief description of the regulations shown in Figure 7. Since 1980, the maximum allow- In order to be able to increase the maximum axle able GVW and dimensions have changed. Table 3 and weight, the vehicle must meet the minimum require- Table 4 show some of the most important changes dur- ments shown in Table 7 and drivers must have spe- ing the last 30 years for GVW and vehicle length, cial training and licensing and maintain a trip log respectively. with hours of service. Drivers must also carry a pri- vate contract between the carrier and the shipment Current Weight Limits owner that specifies that they share responsibility for complying with the regulations. This contract spec- Mexican truck weight regulations specify that ifies the truck route, the shipment description, and commercial vehicles using federal highways must the vehicle gross weight. comply simultaneously with requirements for max- Although NOM-012-SCT-2-2008 is the current imum weight per axle and GVW, respectively. regulation, the SCT is not enforcing its provisions at The maximum GVW is limited by either of the this time since some details are not final. For exam- following two factors--the sum of the maximum ple, to verify that the vehicle complies with all the weight per axle or the bridge formula. The bridge requirements included in Table 7, the SCT plans to formula is as follows: release a new vehicle circulation card that will include all the necessary information. Due to several delays in the release of the new circulation cards, there is also AD × N MGW = 870 + ( 3.66 × N ) + 11 a delay in enforcement of both the circulation cards N -1 and the special driver's license. Table 8 summa- rizes the maximum GVW allowed when the vehicle, where driver, and carrier comply with all the exception requirements. MGW = Maximum gross weight in kilograms AD = Distance between the centers of the ex- Current Size Limits treme axles N = Number of axles NOM-012-SCT-2-2008 also regulates the maxi- mum vehicle dimensions. As shown in Table 9, the Vehicle type and roadway determine both the maximum length of 31 m (101.71 ft) has not changed axle weight limit and the GVW limit. Table 5 and significantly in the latest version of the standard. The Table 6 present the maximum axle gross weight and maximum width for commercial vehicles is 2.60 m the maximum GVW, respectively. These maximum (8.5 ft), not including mirrors. The maximum height weights could be even greater for trucks that travel is 4.25 m (14 ft) for all types of combination vehicles on ET and A highways and comply with special and on all road classes. characteristics. The maximum length also varies with the type Table 7 presents the required characteristics for of road and type of combination vehicle. Addition- increasing the allowable weight by 1.5 metric tons ally, NOM-012 establishes that trailer and semi- for every traction axle and by 1.0 metric ton for every trailer lengths should not exceed 13.70 m (45 ft) other axle except the steering axle. This exception except on ET highways where it allows 16.2-m (53-ft) granted for vehicles with pneumatic suspension will semitrailers (single semitrailers, not configured reduce the pavement damage on roads and bridges as LCVs). 8
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RAFSA RTCF Characteristics of the 9 axle 34 tire truck(a): Max gross weight = 77.5 ton, Max length = 22 meters. LCV's are RSMPT RPD allowed. Weight and Dimension Regulation 1980 1995 2000 2005 2010 1979 1981 1993 1994 1996 1997 1998 1999 2001 2002 2003 2004 2006 2007 2008 2009 2011 Characteristics of the 9 axle 34 tire truck: Max gross weight = 76 ton, Max NOM-068-SCT-2-2000 LCPAF NOM-040-SCT-2-2008 length = 31 meters. No longer Valid NOM-012-SCT-2-1994 Under review Characteristics of the 9 Characteristics of the 9 Valid - Current Version axle 34 tire truck: Max axle 34 tire truck: Max NOM-040-SCT-2-1995 gross weight = 81.5 ton, Max gross weight = 80 ton, Max length = 31 meters. length = 31 meters. New version - not approved NOM-012-SCT-2-1995 NOM-012-SCT-2-2008 Figure 7 Mexican transportation regulations timeline.
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Table 2 Mexican transportation regulations. Last Abbreviation Update Title Title in English Reglamento de Peso y Oct. 1980 Reglamento de Peso y Regulation Concerning Dimensiones Dimensiones Weights and Other Vehicle (no longer valid) Characteristics NOM-012-SCT-2-1994 Nov. 1994 Norma Oficial Mexicana Official Mexican Standard (no longer valid) NOM-012-SCT-2-1994, NOM-012-SCT-2-1994, On Sobre el peso y dimensiones the Maximum Weight and máximas con los que pueden Dimensions of Motor Trans- circular los vehículos de port Vehicles Traveling on autotransporte que transitan Federal Jurisdiction Roads en los caminos y puentes de and Bridges jurisdicción federal. NOM-040-SCT-2-1995 March 1998 Norma Oficial Mexicana Official Mexican Standard NOM-040-SCT-2-1995, Para NOM-040-SCT-2-1995, The el transporte de objetos indi- Transport of Single-Unit visibles de gran peso y/o vol- Objects of Great Weight umen, peso y dimensiones de and/or Volume, Weight, and las combinaciones vehicu- Dimensions of Vehicular lares y de las grúas industri- Combinations and of Indus- ales y su tránsito por caminos trial Cranes That Travel on y puentes de jurisdicción Federal Jurisdiction Roads federal and Bridges NOM-068-SCT-2-2000 July 2000 Norma Oficial Mexicana Official Mexican Standard NOM-068-SCT-2-2000, NOM-068-SCT-2-2000, Transporte terrestre-Servicio Land Transportation- de autotransporte federal Passenger, Tourism and de pasaje, turismo, carga Freight Motor Transport- y transporte privado- Physical, Mechanical and Condiciones físico-mecánica Safety Vehicle Condition for y de seguridad para la Operation on Federal Roads operación en caminos y puentes de jurisdicción federal NOM-012-SCT-2-1995 Oct. 2000 Norma Oficial Mexicana Official Mexican Standard (no longer valid) NOM-012-SCT-2-1995, NOM-012-SCT-2-1995, On Sobre el peso y dimensiones the Maximum Weight and máximas con los que pueden Dimensions of Motor Trans- circular los vehículos de portation Vehicles Circulat- autotransporte que transitan ing on Roads and Bridges of en los caminos y puentes de Federal Jurisdiction jurisdicción federal. RAFSA Nov. 2000 Reglamento de Autotransporte Regulation of Federal Motor Federal y Servicios Auxiliares Transportation and Auxiliary Services RSMPT April 2004 Reglamento del Servicio de Regulation of Preventive Medicina Preventiva en el Medicine Services for Transporte. Transportation RTCF Oct. 2004 Reglamento de Tránsito en Regulation of Travel on Federal Carreteras Federales Highways LCPAF Oct. 2005 Ley de Caminos, Puentes y Law of Roads, Bridges, and Autotransporte Federal Federal Motor Transportation 10
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Table 2 (Continued) Last Abbreviation Update Title Title in English RPD Nov. 2006 Reglamento sobre el Peso, Regulation Concerning Dimensiones y capacidad Weights, Dimensions, and de los vehiculos de auto- Capacity of Commercial transporte que transitan en Vehicles That Travel on Fed- los Caminos y puentes de eral Jurisdiction Highways jurisdiccion Federal and Bridges NOM-012-SCT-2-2008 April 2008 Norma Oficial Mexicana Official Mexican Standard NOM-012-SCT-2-2008, NOM-012-SCT-2-2008, On Sobre el peso y dimensiones the Maximum Weight and máximas con los que pueden Dimensions of Motor Trans- circular los vehículos de port Vehicles Traveling on autotransporte que transitan Federal Jurisdiction Roads en los caminos y puentes de and Bridges jurisdicción federal. PROY NOM-040-SCT-2-2008 In process Norma Oficial Mexicana NOM- Official Mexican Standard 040-SCT-2-2008, Para el NOM-040-SCT-2-2008, The transporte de objetos indivisi- Transport of Single-Unit bles de gran peso y/o volu- Objects of Great Weight men, peso y dimensiones de and/or Volume, Weight, and las combinaciones vehicu- Dimensions of Vehicular lares y de las grúas industri- Combinations and of Indus- ales y su tránsito por caminos trial Cranes Traveling on y puentes de jurisdicción Federal Jurisdiction Roads federal and Bridges Table 3 Evolution of the maximum allowable GVW (metric tons).* Vehicle Type 1980 Regulation NOM-012-SCT-2-1994 NOM-012-SCT-2-1995 NOM-012-SCT-2-2008 T3-S2 NA 44.0 + 5% 44.0 + 5.0 41.5 + 5.0 T2-S1-R2 45.5 47.5 + 5% 47.5 + 4.5 47.5 + 4.5 T2-S1-R3 -- -- -- 54.5 + 5.5 T2-S2-R2 -- -- -- 54.5 + 5.5 T3-S1-R2 53.5 56.0 + 5% 56.0 + 6.0 54.5 + 6.0 T3-S1-R3 -- -- -- 60.5 + 7.0 T3-S2-R2 61.5 60.5 + 5% 60.5 + 7.0 60.5 + 7.0 T3-S2-R3 69.5 -- 63.0 + 8.0 63.0 + 8.0 + 4.5** T3-S2-R4 77.5 72.5 + 5% 66.5 + 9.0 66.5 + 9.0 + 4.5** T3-S2-S2 -- -- -- 58.5 + 7.0 T2-S2-S2 -- -- -- 51.5 + 5.5 T3-S3-S2 -- -- 60.0 + 8.0 60.0 + 8.0 *Maximum GVW on ET and A highways; extra weight is allowed for pneumatic suspension. NA: data not available. (--): not considered. **These two vehicle combinations are allowed an extra 4.5 tons until 2013. 11
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Table 4 Evolution of the maximum allowable length (m).* Vehicle Type 1980 Regulation NOM-012-SCT-2-1994 NOM-012-SCT-2-1995 NOM-012-SCT-2-2008 T3-S2 NA 20.8 20.8 23.0 T2-S1-R2 22.0 31.0 31.0 31.0 T2-S1-R3 -- -- -- 31.0 T2-S2-R2 -- -- -- 31.0 T3-S1-R2 22.0 31.0 31.0 31.0 T3-S1-R3 -- -- -- 31.0 T3-S2-R2 22.0 31.0 31.0 31.0 T3-S2-R3 22.0 -- 31.0 31.0 T3-S2-R4 22.0 31.0 31.0 31.0 T3-S2-S2 -- -- -- 31.0 T2-S2-S2 -- -- -- 31.0 T3-S3-S2 -- -- 25.0 25.0 *Maximum allowable vehicle length for ET and A roadways. NA: data not available. (--): not considered. Table 5 Maximum allowable axle and group weight (metric tons). Road Type Axle Configuration ET & A B C D Single (two tires) 6.50 6.00 5.50 5.00 Single (four tires) 10.00 9.50 8.00 7.00 Single power axle (four tires) 11.00 10.50 9.00 8.00 Double power axle (six tires) 15.00 13.00 11.50 11.00 Double (eight tires) 17.00 15.00 13.50 12.00 Double power axle (eight tires) 18.00 17.00 14.50 13.50 Triple (12 tires) 23.50 22.50 20.00 NA NA: not authorized. SOURCE: NOM-012-SCT-2-2008. 12
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Table 6 Maximum allowable GVW. Maximum Gross Weight (Metric Tons) LCV Configuration Axles Tires ET & A B C D T2-S1 3 10 27.5 26.0 22.5 NA T2-S2 4 14 34.5 31.5 28.0 NA T3-S2 5 18 41.5 38.0 33.5 NA T3-S3 6 22 48.0 45.5 40.0 NA T2-S3 5 18 41.0 39.0 34.5 NA T3-S1 4 14 34.5 32.5 28.0 NA T2-S1-R2 5 18 47.5 45.0 NA NA T2-S1-R3 6 22 54.5 50.5 NA NA T2-S2-R2 6 22 54.5 50.5 NA NA T3-S1-R2 6 22 54.5 51.5 NA NA T3-S1-R3 7 26 60.5 57.5 NA NA T3-S2-R2 7 26 60.5 57.5 NA NA T3-S2-R4 9 34 66.5 66.0 NA NA T3-S2-R3 8 30 63.0 62.5 NA NA T3-S3-S2 8 30 60.0 60.0 NA NA T2-S2-S2 6 22 51.5 46.5 NA NA T3-S2-S2 7 26 58.5 53.0 NA NA NA: not authorized. SOURCE: NOM-012-SCT-2-2008. For auto carriers, the rear overhang on the trailer Special Provisions for Non-Divisible Loads or semitrailer can extend past the end of the trailer In Mexico, NOM-040-SCT-2-1995 regulates up to 1 m (3.28 ft). When the truck is transporting non-divisible loads. Norma Oficial Mexicana NOM- pipe, poles, or iron rods, the load can extend past the 040-SCT-2-1995, Para el transporte de objetos indi- end of the semitrailer by as much as 2.50 m (8.2 ft) visibles de gran peso y/o volumen, peso y dimensiones if the total length of the semitrailer is less than de las combinaciones vehiculares y de las grúas indus- 14.63 m (48 ft) and the total length of the combination triales y su tránsito por caminos y puentes de jurisdic- is less than the maximum allowed. ción federal (Transportation of Indivisible Objects of Great Weight and/or Volume, Weight, and Dimen- General Motor Carrier Operating Environment sions of Vehicular Combinations and of Industrial As noted earlier, trucks and trailers used in Mex- Cranes Traveling on Federal Jurisdiction Roads and ico are similar in many ways to trucks currently oper- Bridges) was published in March 1998. A new ver- ating on U.S. highways. However, there are significant sion of this standard is under development as a proj- differences in size and weight limits between the ect (PROY NOM-040-SCT-2-2008), but it has to two countries, so vehicles in Mexico are typically go through the approval process. Table 10 shows the heavier than their counterparts in the United States. current standard for maximum axle load for non- The largest--and in some cases heaviest--trucks in divisible load trips. both countries are LCVs. For special loads, the maximum GVW is the sum The most common type of combination vehicle of the maximum axle weights. Cargo must be posi- used in Mexico (as in the United States) is the tractor- tioned in the truck so that the axle weight does not semitrailer (3-S2, or T3-S2 in Mexico). The most exceed the maximum allowed. commonly used semitrailer length in the United States The maximum allowed speed on bridges is is 53 ft, and it is not surprising that vehicles of this 30 km/hr (19 mph) for loads weighing less than length are widely used in Mexico on the highest 70 metric tons, 20 km/hr (12 mph) for loads weigh- classes of roadways (ET, A, and B). ing between 70 and 90 metric tons, and 10 km/hr 13
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Table 7 Minimum requirements to increase maximum axle weight. Minimum Low Emission Electronic Minimum and Physical- Engine Power Minimum Capacity Auxiliary Dolly Converter Anti-lock Truck Mechanical Requirements in Torque of Traction Brake with Double Brake System Pneumatic Configuration Certification Horse Power (HP) (lb-ft) Axles (lb) System Security Chains (ABS) Suspension T2-S1 260 660 -- -- T2-S2 300 800 -- -- T3-S2 350 1,050 -- -- T3-S3 350 1,050 -- -- T2-S3 350 1,050 -- -- T3-S1 300 800 -- -- T2-S1-R2 350 1,250 30,000 T2-S2-R2 350 1,250 30,000 T2-S1-R3 370 1,250 30,000 T3-S1-R2 370 1,250 40,000 T3-S1-R3 400 1,650 44,000 T3-S2-R2 400 1,650 44,000 T3-S2-R4 450 1,850 46,000 T3-S2-R3 450 1,850 44,000 T3-S3-S2 400 1,650 44,000 -- T2-S2-S2 370 1,250 30,000 -- T3-S2-S2 400 1,650 44,000 -- (--): Not applicable for this vehicle. SOURCE: NOM-012-SCT-2-2008.
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Table 8 Maximum allowable GVW. Table 9 Maximum truck lengths in Mexico. Maximum Gross Weight Maximum Length (m) (Metric Tons) by Road Type Truck Truck Configuration ET & A Highways Configuration ET & A B C D T2-S1 30.0 T2-S1 23.0 20.8 18.5 NA T2-S2 38.0 T2-S2 23.0 20.8 18.5 NA T3-S2 46.5 T3-S2 23.0 20.8 18.5 NA T3-S3 54.0 T3-S3 23.0 20.8 18.5 NA T2-S3 45.5 T2-S3 23.0 20.0 18.0 NA T3-S1 38.5 T3-S1 23.0 20.0 18.0 NA T2-S1-R2 52.0 T2-S1-R2 31.0 28.5 NA NA T2-S1-R3 60.0 T2-S1-R3 31.0 28.5 NA NA T2-S2-R2 60.0 T2-S2-R2 31.0 28.5 NA NA T3-S1-R2 60.5 T3-S1-R2 31.0 28.5 NA NA T3-S1-R3 67.5 T3-S1-R3 31.0 28.5 NA NA T3-S2-R2 67.5 T3-S2-R2 31.0 28.5 NA NA T3-S2-R4 80.0* T3-S2-R4 31.0 28.5 NA NA T3-S2-R3 75.5* T3-S2-R3 31.0 28.5 NA NA T3-S3-S2 68.0 T3-S3-S2 25.0 25.0 NA NA T2-S2-S2 57.0 T2-S2-S2 31.0 28.5 NA NA T3-S2-S2 65.5 T3-S2-S2 31.0 28.5 NA NA *These figures include an additional 4.5 tons allowed by law until NA: not authorized. 2013. SOURCE: NOM-012-SCT-2-2008. SOURCE: NOM-012-SCT-2-2008. (6 mph) for loads greater than 90 metric tons. The usually required. The carrier must prove that the truck must also travel along the center of the bridge. load and axle configuration complies with the max- If the load capacity of the configuration does not imum allowed. exceed 90 metric tons, the maximum speed allowed If the load capacity of the configuration exceeds varies between 20 km/hr and 70 km/hr (12 mph and 90 metric tons, the carrier must comply with a specific 44 mph, respectively) depending on the vehicle con- technical permission issued by the SCT. The carrier figuration and road type. Pneumatic suspension is must inform the SCT and the Federal Highway Police Table 10 Maximum axle load weight for non-divisible loads. Load/Axle Type (Metric Tons) Maximum Load per Axle Type Tires Weight/Tire Load per Axle or Group per Axle (Metric Tons) Axle Group Single 2 3.3 6.6 6.6 Single 4 2.75 11.0 11.0 Single 8 2.75 22.0 22.0 Double 8 2.75 11.0 22.0 Double 16 2.75 22.0 44.0 Triple 12 2.75 11.0 33.0 Triple 24 2.75 22.0 66.0 Quadruple 8 per axle 2.25 18.0 Variable Quadruple 12 per axle 2.25 27.0 Variable SOURCE: NOM-040-SCT-2-1995. 15
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Table 11 Maximum axle load dimensions for pull in, enforcement representatives direct drivers to non-divisible loads. cross a weigh-in-motion (WIM) system to estimate the weight. If the WIM detects that the truck is over- Maximum Dimensions (m) Configuration weight, trucks have to be weighed on a static scale. Type Length Width Height The SCT and the police also perform random checks at non-fixed locations of the roadway network 1 20.8 2.6 4.25 utilizing portable equipment. These inspections are 2 20.8 Up to 3.1 Any not very frequent because the federal police who 3 18.0 Up to 3.3 Any perform the inspections have other duties assigned to 4 30.0 Up to 3.6 Any 5 Over 30.0 Up to 3.6 Any them. Security issues along the roadway network have 6 Any Over 3.6 Any become more frequent in recent years, reducing the priority of vehicle safety inspections. During a road- SOURCE: NOM-040-SCT-2-1995. side inspection at either fixed or portable locations, the SCT also requires drivers to undergo medical exami- of the route and schedule of the trip at least 24 hours nations. The purpose is to determine whether drivers in advance of the trip. Table 11 shows the maximum are medically fit to operate large vehicles safely. dimensions allowed by this standard. NOM-012-SCT-2-2008 empowers the SCT to Depending on the special vehicle configuration limit the size and weight of commercial vehicles using type, escort vehicles (or pilot cars) with warning lights size and weight enforcement stations (currently are required to improve safety and facilitate trans- there are 7 fixed enforcement stations and more portation of the oversize vehicle. Oversize config- than 30 portable stations in Mexico) and an auto- uration Types 1 through 3 require no escort vehicles; regulation process whereby eligible shippers and car- Type 4 requires one escort vehicle; and Types 5 and riers that have certified weighing scales and measuring 6 require two escort vehicles. These special vehicle systems can auto-regulate size and weight limits (this configurations are not allowed to travel on federal provision has not been enforced yet). highways between sunset and midnight. Norma Oficial Mexicana NOM-068-SCT-2-2000, Transporte terrestre-Servicio de autotransporte fed- Truck Size and Weight eral de pasaje, turismo, carga y transporte privado-- Enforcement Procedures Condiciones físico-mecánica y de seguridad para la operación en caminos y puentes de jurisdicción fed- In Mexico, the SCT is responsible for the enforce- eral (NOM-068-SCT-2-2000) establishes the criteria ment and regulation of commercial vehicles. First and authority for roadside commercial vehicle inspec- developed in the early 1990s, Mexico's commercial tions. This regulation also establishes the procedures vehicle enforcement and inspection program includes used for inspecting commercial vehicles and placing roadside inspections and on-site compliance reviews. them out of service and also a timeframe for inspect- To achieve compliance with the standards regulat- ing these vehicles, ranging from 20 minutes for buses ing the use of highways at the federal level, Mexico and commercial vehicles carrying hazardous materi- uses various methods to check aspects of commer- als to 30 minutes for commercial vehicles carrying cial vehicles. general cargo. Table 12 shows current enforcement The purpose of the inspections conducted by the actions taken for various noncompliant equipment SCT is to verify that carriers, drivers, equipment, conditions under NOM-068-SCT-2-2000. installations, and operating service comply with all the requirements imposed by federal standards. Vehicle Characteristics, Licensing, SCT inspections are done with the cooperation of and Training Provisions the Federal Highway Police, and, generally, they are performed during regular work days and hours, NOM-068-SCT-2-2000 defines the physical and although they could be carried out at any day or time mechanical requirements of vehicles on federal high- if necessary. ways and inspection and verification procedures for The SCT has built fixed-location facilities where determining whether vehicles comply with such trucks are inspected using techniques similar to those specifications. This standard was published in 2000, used in the United States. When the stations are in but has not been enforced. However, now that the operation and lights are flashing to signal drivers to latest version of NOM-012 has been published, the 16
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Table 12 Mexican roadside commercial vehicle noncompliant equipment conditions and enforcement actions. Enforcement NOM-068-SCT-2-2000 Noncompliant Equipment Conditions Actions 4.1 Lighting Systems Missing fuses, bridged with wire, aluminum, or other A* Worn, exposed, twisted wires, missing insulation Missing or inoperable headlights (if needed) Missing or inoperable brake lights 4.3 Windshield Wipers No windshield wipers and spray jets A 4.4 Windshield Shattered or missing windshield B 4.5 Tires, Inner Tubes, Belts Cut/damaged tire walls, exposed structural material, B tread separation, abrasion from adjacent surfaces, exposed radial belts, wheel separation, not designed for highway use 4.6 Wheels, Rims Bent, broken, or cracked wheel rims B 4.7/4.8 Frames, Rails, Chassis Cracked, loose, bent, or broken frame rails B Twists, bends, weaknesses from cracked chassis 4.9 Fuel System Missing gas cap, fuel spillage in filling pipe, leaking B fuel lines 4.11 Exhaust System Unsafe mounting of exhaust pipes B Broken or damaged exhaust pipes 4.12 Steering System Loose steering wheel, detached joints, missing steering B column U-bolts Detached steering gear box from chassis mounting, ruptured gear box or mounting brackets 4.13 Suspension System No springs on mechanical suspension B Cracked suspension frame or loose U-bolts 4.14 Pneumatic Brake System Curled, obstructed, or broken hoses or pipes C Cracked brake drums Detached or loosely mounted brake chambers Out of adjustment (>20%) push rods 4.15 Hydraulic Brake System Inoperative brake linings and/or oil contamination B of drums Missing brake lining segments 4.16 Electric Brake System Missing, ruptured, or defective brake on vehicle wheel B *A When these defects are evident, the driver is allowed to correct deficiencies immediately. Once the correction has been verified, he or she may continue his or her trip, exempt from corresponding sanctions. B For these defects, a sanction will be issued, but the driver/vehicle will be allowed to continue on to the destination with the aim of repair- ing the defects found. Once the defects are corrected and verified, the driver/vehicle will be allowed to resume normal operations. A written advisory will be issued that notes the defects discovered and allows a maximum of 20 calendar days to be corrected. C For these defects, a sanction will be issued, and the driver/vehicle will be put out of service. The vehicle must be towed to a location determined by the owner for repair. Once the defects are repaired and inspected/verified, the driver/vehicle may resume normal operations. The driver must maintain the vehicle evaluation form in the vehicle. SCT will begin enforcing verification that the LCVs previously noted, this special license requirement is that are allowed extra axle and gross weight actually not being enforced since the license renewal mech- have the requisite pneumatic suspensions. anism has not been created. Nonetheless, it is impor- tant to review the basics of the current Mexican Licensing Requirements licensing, training, and testing processes. NOM-012-SCT-2-2008 specifies that LCV driv- According to the current legislation, all commer- ers must have a special driver's license and training cial vehicle drivers, including Mexican and foreign when the truck is using the extra axle weight. As drivers, are required to have a valid driver's license. 17
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To obtain a federal driver's license, drivers must file vehicle operations, and maintenance content. Training a written application with the SCT. Depending on requirements for renewing drivers are 40 hours of the license category, the application must be accom- roadway safety and defensive driving, vehicle opera- panied with the following materials: tion and maintenance, and customer service; 28 hours of road safety, vehicle operation and maintenance, and · In all cases, drivers must provide a medical customer attention and service; and 16 hours of tech- (psychological and physical) fitness certifi- nical update, service quality culture, family values, cate, two identification cards with full-front and integrity. Drivers can obtain the required training color photos, proof of address, and a training from the SCT's officially certified schools and educa- certificate. tional or licensee training centers. · For License Categories A (bus), B (tractor- In addition to meeting training requirements, trailer combination, excluding hazardous drivers must take a psychological and physical exam materials), C (two- or three-axle trucks, ex- by a certified medical professional. A medical exam cluding hazardous materials), D (automobiles is required prior to license issuance and every 2 years and small buses), and F (taxis to/from Mexi- thereafter. The exam considers each of the following can airports and seaports), drivers must also physical features in the context of potential interfer- provide legal documentation that certifies their ence with the safe and efficient performance of driver legal age and, in the case of Category D, a tourist guide credential. activities: · For Category E (any truck including hazardous · Eyes, nose, and throat materials), drivers must have a Category B · Respiratory system or C federal driver's license or a hazardous · Cardiovascular system materials and waste carrier certificate that indi- · Digestive system/abdominal wall cates 2 years of experience operating vehicles · Musculoskeletal system that haul this type of product. · Plasma Drivers operating across international borders · Organ transplants must also provide legal documentation that certifies · Nervous system their legal age as 21 years old or older and a certifi- · Endocrinal system cate proving knowledge of the English language. · Hematopoietic system · Genitourinary apparatus License Renewals · Skin · Psychological The effective term of a federal driver's license · Psychiatric is 10 years with renewals every 2 years. License renewals require drivers to complete additional train- In the United States, individual states develop ing and a physical exam. The following section pre- their own knowledge and skill tests that must meet the sents the details of the physical exam and training minimum federal standards provided for in Subpart G requirements. When the driver is requesting a change and H of 49 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) in the license category, the applicant must file the Part 383 (2). The Federal Motor Carrier Safety appropriate training certificate and/or his/her current Administration (FMCSA) has prepared and distrib- license with the SCT. The renewal term is currently uted model driver and examiner manuals and tests to under review by the SCT. the states to use if they wish. Some of the require- ments associated with the tests include the following: Training Requirements and Physical Exam · Each basic knowledge test (i.e., the test cov- Prior to license issuance and renewal, drivers are ering the areas referred to in 49 CFR 383.111 required to obtain a training certificate. Training for the applicable vehicle group) shall contain requirements for new drivers are 63 hours of roadway at least 30 items, exclusive of the number of safety theory and defensive driving, vehicle opera- items testing air brake knowledge. tion and maintenance, customer service, security and · Applicants must correctly answer at least hygiene, and human development and 57 hours 80 percent of the questions to pass the knowl- of practical roadway safety and defensive driving, edge tests (general and endorsement). 18