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Retractable axles.

(1) What criteria must a retractable axle meet in order to carry the weight provided in RCW 46.44.041? The retractable axle must meet three criteria:
(a) The retractable axle must have a manufacturer's rating of at least eight thousand pounds. The weight carried on the axle must not exceed the design load capacity as indicated by an attached data plate or written certification from the vendor/manufacturer; and
(b) The weight carried per tire must not exceed the lesser of manufacturer's rating or five hundred pounds (six hundred when operating under a special permit for overweight) per inch width of tire as described in RCW 46.44.042; and
(c) The axle must be self-steering.
(2) Are there restrictions on the location of the operating controls for the retractable axle? Yes. The simple "up/down" control may be in the driver's compartment; however, any variable control used to adjust axle loadings, by regulating air pressure or other means, must not be within reach of the driver's compartment.
(3) Are there any exceptions to the self-steering requirement? Yes. The self-steering requirement does not apply when:
(a) The retractable axle, equipped with four tires, is used for the purpose of weight distribution on a truck or truck-tractor and gives the appearance of, but does not function as, a tandem axle drive configuration. The distance between the drive axle and the retractable axle must not exceed sixty inches.
(b) A retractable axle is used adjacent to a fixed axle on a trailing unit and distance between the two axles does not exceed sixty inches.
[Statutory Authority: RCW 46.44.090. WSR 06-07-025, § 468-38-280, filed 3/7/06, effective 4/7/06; WSR 05-04-053, § 468-38-280, filed 1/28/05, effective 2/28/05; WSR 95-24-075, § 468-38-280, filed 12/4/95, effective 1/4/96; WSR 93-19-056 (Order 138), § 468-38-280, filed 9/10/93, effective 10/11/93; WSR 85-22-002 (Order 50, Resolution No. 253), § 468-38-280, filed 10/24/85; WSR 82-18-010 (Order 31, Resolution No. 156), § 468-38-280, filed 8/20/82. Formerly WAC 468-38-390. Statutory Authority: 1977 ex.s. c 151. WSR 79-01-033 (DOT Order 10 and Comm. Order 1, Resolution No. 13), § 468-38-280, filed 12/20/78. Formerly WAC 252-24-339.]
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