North Dakota has first in-road scales up and running

| Friday, January 16, 2004

North Dakota has installed its new Weigh-in-Motion system at four locations along its highways, the state’s Department of Transportation announced recently.

The system, which is intended to eventually replace traditional weigh stations in North Dakota, uses sensors built into the roadway to determine the weight, number of axles and type of vehicle passing over it.

According to NDDOT, the information from the sensor is transmitted to a computer in a Highway Patrol vehicle. If the sensor says the vehicle is overweight, the trooper can stop the vehicle and weigh it again using portable scales or a fixed-scale location. According to The Bismarck Tribune, 18 Highway Patrol vehicles are now set up to receive the information.

In addition, the information is transmitted to NDDOT to help determine how to build and maintain state roadways better.

“Collecting traffic information such as traffic volume, vehicle type, the number of axles, and weight of a vehicle will provide the NDDOT with a road map of the traffic stream,” NDDOT Director Dave Sprynczynatyk said in a statement. “This allows the NDDOT to better design highway infrastructure to meet the traffic demands.”

The four sites in place are on Interstate 94 near Belfield, Interstate 29 near Wahpeton, Highway 85 near Bowman and Highway 281 near Ellendale, according to The Tribune. The state DOT said eight more locations would be outfitted with Weigh-In-Motion devices later this year.

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