OOIDA Life Member Rollin Pizzala doesn’t normally attend the Mid-West Truck & Trailer Show in Peoria, IL. But in February of this year, he decided to go, a decision that paid off for Pizzala and other truckers who travel north on U.S. Route 41 in Illinois and stop at the weigh station near the Wisconsin border.
Pizzala, who lives in Kenosha, WI, drives north on Route 41 often. He said because the scale is only 73 feet from the road, the scale light is positioned such that it is nearly impossible to see. He had to put his head down into the steering wheel to see the light. In late afternoon, the sun would shine right into his eyes, making it impossible to see the color of the light.
Pizzala mentioned the problem to the Scale Master and was told the configuration was too expensive to change. Pizzala didn’t like that answer, so he decided to do something about it.
He wrote letters to the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association, Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White, and U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood.
Then came the Mid-West Truck & Trailer Show. Pizzala stopped at the state police’s display and discussed the issue with David B. Johnson, Engineer of Maintenance Operations for the Illinois Department of Transportation. Johnson asked for a copy of the letter he had sent to OOIDA, White and LaHood.
Pizzala sent the letter to Johnson. Within 30 days, Pizzala pulled into the northbound scale on Route 41 and didn’t see the light – at first. It had been moved to the side of the pole and was now easily visible.
Pizzala said it is now safe to go through the scale and he really appreciates what Johnson did.