Wednesday, August 12, 2015

What’s in your trailer or truck?

Communications Office 

WSDA investigators talk with hay haulers.
With summer travel and harvests well under way, WSDA is making an extra effort to ensure drivers transporting agriculture products or livestock meet state requirements meant to safeguard our crops and livestock.

As part of this effort, we teamed up with the Washington State Patrol to conduct emphasis checks along State Route 12 at the end of July. Investigators from WSDA’s Agricultural Investigations and Animal Health programs waved drivers off the road and into the check point set up at White Pass.

There, our staff talked to the drivers - some pulling trailers filled with cattle or horses, and some hauling hay or other agricultural crops. The investigators wanted to make sure drivers transporting this material had proper ownership documents, appropriate licenses, records of necessary inspections or animal health certificates when needed.  

State troopers joined in to ensure trucks and trailers met commercial vehicle regulations. The troopers conducted safety inspections, enforced compliance with weight limits and checked for current licensing and registration.

WSDA investigators spoke with nearly 40 drivers hauling hay, sweet corn, carrots, apples, watermelon and other field crops - most of this bound for farmers markets and private sales. Two horses and 140 cattle made up the livestock being carried over White Pass. 

Corn hauler chats with WSDA investigators.
Five violations were detected involving ag commodity dealers who either were not licensed or had a brand violation involving livestock. Some verbal and written warnings were also issued. Of those found in violation of licensing requirements, two have already begun the process of getting licensed and one has already become licensed. 

For team members, this was a successful effort - they were able to find some violations of state rules and get those people into compliance, but more importantly, they were able to educate a number of people about the rules involving livestock and commodities. 

The team is planning to conduct more of these checks through the summer, including in an area near the Idaho border. If you need info on licensing for commodity dealers, visit the Agricultural Investigations Program. For information on requirements regarding livestock, visit the Animal Health Program.