Truckers Traveling In Oregon Face Increased Tire Chain Law Fines This Winter

Truckers Traveling In Oregon Face Increased Tire Chain Law Fines This Winter

The Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) announced on Sept. 20 that they will double the fines for truckers who fail to use tire chains when required.

The fine comes from a new Oregon law, HB3055, taking effect Sept. 25, increasing the failure to use chains to $880. However, the costs can increase if the chainless truck crashes into another vehicle.

Before the increase, the fine was $440, which was an increase from the Class C violation of $165 before 2017.

According to an ODOT news release, the estimated cost of delays caused by trucks failing to follow Oregon chain laws is over $8 million a year to the motor carrier industry and other highway users. When a truck loses traction, it can not only delay its delivery but also delay everyone else on the road behind a stuck truck.

In 2017,ODOT enforced 1,404 citations and warnings for all chain violations with more than half of these citations and warnings for not carrying chains.

Specifically for motor carriers, ODOT found 21 motor carriers had 4 or more citations, 6 motor carriers had 8 or more citations, and 3 motor carriers had 10 or more citation during the 2017 winter season.

Oregon chain laws for Commercial vehicles with trailers

According to Oregon state law, all commercial vehicles to carry chains whenever road conditions might require their use during your trip and signs are posted. You will need to have six chains on hand to comply in Oregon.


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The law also requires vehicles to chain up when signs tell you that conditions ahead require them.

Mountain passes to be aware of when traveling through the state include Siskiyou on I-5, Cabbage on I-84, and Mt. Hood on US 26.

CMVs with a gross vehicle weight rating of 26,001 pounds or more that are towing one or more trailers must have the following tire chain setup:

  • A single-drive axle commercial vehicle towing a trailer shall have chains on two tires on each side of the drive axle and one tire on the front axle and one tire on one of the rear axles of the trailer;
  • A single-drive axle commercial vehicle towing a semitrailer shall have chains on two tires on each side of the drive axle and two tires, one on each side, of any axle of the semitrailer;
  • A single-drive axle commercial vehicle towing both a semitrailer and a trailer shall have chains on two tires on each side of the drive axle, two tires, one on each side, of any axle of the semitrailer, and one tire on the front axle and one tire on one of the rear axles of the trailer;
  • A tandem-drive axle commercial vehicle towing a trailer shall have chains on two tires on each side of the primary drive axle, or if both axles of the vehicle are powered by the drive line, one tire on each side of each drive axle. Chains shall also be placed on one tire of the front axle and one tire on one of the rear axles of the trailer;
  • A tandem-drive axle commercial vehicle towing a semitrailer shall have chains on two tires on each side of the primary drive axle; or if both axles of the vehicle are powered by the drive line, one tire on each side of each drive axle. Chains shall also be placed on two tires, one on each side, of any axle of the semitrailer;
  • A tandem-drive axle commercial vehicle towing both a semitrailer and a trailer shall have chains on two tires on each side of the primary drive axle or if both axles of the vehicle are powered by the drive line, one tire on each side of each drive axle. Chains shall also be placed on two tires, one on each side of any axle on the semitrailer and one tire on the front axle and one tire on one of the rear axles of the trailer; and
  • A tandem-drive axle commercial vehicle towing a semitrailer and a semitrailer that are connected by kingpin-to-fifth wheel assemblies, commonly referred to as a “B-Train,” or connected by kingpin-to-fifth wheel “C-dolly” assemblies, commonly referred to as a “C-Train”, shall have chains on two tires on each side of the primary drive axle; or if both axles of the vehicle are powered by the drive line, one tire on each side of each drive axle. Chains shall also be placed on two tires, one on each side, of any axle of the semitrailer at the B-train or C-train connection, and on two tires, one on each side, of any axle of the rear semitrailer.

DOT Training

All fleets need to conduct proper and thorough pre and post trip inspections, which consists of implementing quality:

  • driver training that is ongoing and consistent
  • driver education, and
  • driver awareness of current and changing traffic laws

All of this will help prevent being targeted by the DOT at roadside inspections and is a valuable resource to ensure a healthy fleet, and compliant safety practices.

Our DOT trainers offer a variety of in-person or online training courses tailored to the specific needs or weaknesses of your company.

For more information, contact us at 888.260.9448 or info@cnsprotects.com.