Snowplow Forums banner

1 - 20 of 32 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
46 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
The State of Michigan may soon be considering a bill that would require all commercial snow plow vehicles to be equipped with an operating oscillating (amber) light and back up alarm. The bill is Senate Bill 980 sponsored by Senator John Gleason. While the oscillating light is a no brain-er the back up alarm causes me some concern. Many of your clients and mine will not be happy with the noise a back up alarm would generate while servicing their driveway while they are sleeping or trying to. Just think about the number of times you go back and forth clearing a residential property -7,8,9 and then for the neighbor next door and across the street. I think you get the picture. The number of calls generated will be, well I can only imagine. There is talk about an amendment allowing for an exemption during nighttime hours in residential neighborhoods. My concern lies with the additional liability to you as a contractor that an exemption might create. Scenario - plow all night without a back up alarm in residential neighborhoods, 7:00 AM rolls around and it is time to activate the alarm, Fred forgets to activate the alarm and at 7:15 AM backs into a person, or God forbid, over a person. Lawyers will be all over this whether or not Fred was at fault. Just by forgetting to activate the back up alarm Fred will be found liable. Just think about how many times you or your employees may forget to turn on that alarm. I encourage you to contact both your Michigan State Senator and your State Representative and tell them that the portion of the Senate Bill 980 dealing with back up alarms needs to be removed. I do not believe that you and I as contractors can afford the potential additional liability.


Herm Witte


President
Witte Lawn Maintenance, Inc.

Serving West Michigan since 1957

Board member MNLA
(Michigan Nursery and Landscape Association)

Member of SIMA
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
268 Posts
Personally I think it's a good idea Herm. The added noise will not make a lot of a differance .You already have a truck runnning, maybe it's a diesel, you are dropping your plow down every few seconds or minutes, as you are plowing there is the sound of the hydraulic motor running as you move your wings etc, then there is also the sound of the scraping as you drive along.

In my opinion I think that it should be manditory just like the orange flashing light. It's a saftey thing, like you said, God forbid that you run someone over and if you can prevent that from happening any way possible I would be all for it. The only disadvantage I see would be the sound of the alarm, it would probably get a little irritating after a while. While my trucks do not have alarms all of my other equipment does have backup alarms, and all of my equipment are equipped with a flashing light.
My way of looking at it is see and be seen (or heard).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
46 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Personally I think it's a good idea Herm. The added noise will not make a lot of a differance .You already have a truck runnning, maybe it's a diesel, you are dropping your plow down every few seconds or minutes, as you are plowing there is the sound of the hydraulic motor running as you move your wings etc, then there is also the sound of the scraping as you drive along.

In my opinion I think that it should be manditory just like the orange flashing light. It's a saftey thing, like you said, God forbid that you run someone over and if you can prevent that from happening any way possible I would be all for it. The only disadvantage I see would be the sound of the alarm, it would probably get a little irritating after a while. While my trucks do not have alarms all of my other equipment does have backup alarms, and all of my equipment are equipped with a flashing light.
My way of looking at it is see and be seen (or heard).
Thanks for your response. It will be interesting to get a feel for where people are at on this issue through this forum.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
189 Posts
There is more danger that I might go crazy and play bumper cars for an entire city block after listening to an alarm for an entire night :eek:

Now you have my vote:D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
342 Posts
An overhead light should be a common practice, but a backup alarm is a little bit overboard.

I would go crazy having to listen to an alarm all night bouncing off the buildings and alley ways downtown.

Though, sometimes it would be nice to have one for doing daytime runs at some of the resturants we do.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,937 Posts
Im sorry,Im from the camp that too much is rediculous.the more flashing lights we add,the more likey we are to get in an accident,the noise will become obnoxious,and ppl will "tune" it out eventually to retain sanity.I cannot stand the sound of a tandem backing or anything with a reverse buzzer.I understand the need for safety,but someday will need to balance it with common sense,and the right to peace,quiet and sanity.If I need a reverse buzzer I will have to wear ear plugs or I'll cut my wrists in an hour....that noise is like fingernails on a chalkboard to me.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
930 Posts
Im sorry,Im from the camp that too much is rediculous.the more flashing lights we add,the more likey we are to get in an accident,the noise will become obnoxious,and ppl will "tune" it out eventually to retain sanity.I cannot stand the sound of a tandem backing or anything with a reverse buzzer.I understand the need for safety,but someday will need to balance it with common sense,and the right to peace,quiet and sanity.If I need a reverse buzzer I will have to wear ear plugs or I'll cut my wrists in an hour....that noise is like fingernails on a chalkboard to me.
You can't even hear the backup alarms on our salt trucks unless you are right behind them and they are really loud. I can see the people move when I go to backup so I know they help. All machinery should have them, heck even our combine came with one. I also agree with everything Devries said.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,080 Posts
Remember, a lot people don't pay attention, or don't care. All you guys in the constriction industry, how many times have you seen people walk or drive through barriors into fresh concrete, openly dangerous areas, whatever. All the safety warnings in the world won't help these people. Backup lights and amber lights, yes. A schrill noise that one person has to listen to for hours on end, no.

If a person can't notice a large truck with flashing lights going back and forth and not step behind them, well.....
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
273 Posts
I,m not from Michigan ( love to visit my relatives there thowe)
But why dont you do what I did and mount a switch in the cab, When I'm in a high traffic parking lot during buisness hours I turn it on, when I have to take the trucks In for safety I turn them on, when Its late at night peacful and Quit and its just me and my truck " I turn it off " and everyone around me that is trying to sleep is happy.:wink
Best part is I dont go Insane andomg

Thats how I solved the problem.:smoking

OH YAA and dont forget to turn it on when pulled over and the officer asks you to put it in reverse:grinz
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,672 Posts
While I like the idea of more safety, does it have to be mandated? Surprised it isn't law yet - or maybe it is and I didn't know about it. I'm guessing the communists in charge here have it already on the books.

Okay, so if it saves a life, it's worth it. I'd still like to be able to shut it off for those secluded residentials, where a back-up alarm at 3am is not going to be appreciated.

Isn't there plans some where of on on a relay that could be switched off?

I know - search tab.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,017 Posts
I,m not from Michigan ( love to visit my relatives there thowe)
But why dont you do what I did and mount a switch in the cab, When I'm in a high traffic parking lot during buisness hours I turn it on, when I have to take the trucks In for safety I turn them on, when Its late at night peacful and Quit and its just me and my truck " I turn it off " and everyone around me that is trying to sleep is happy.:wink
Best part is I dont go Insane andomg

Thats how I solved the problem.:smoking

OH YAA and dont forget to turn it on when pulled over and the officer asks you to put it in reverse:grinz

I got mine switched to Brent. Its nice for daytime work for sure. People do seem to notice it, and move away or stop.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
930 Posts
While I like the idea of more safety, does it have to be mandated? Surprised it isn't law yet - or maybe it is and I didn't know about it. I'm guessing the communists in charge here have it already on the books.

Okay, so if it saves a life, it's worth it. I'd still like to be able to shut it off for those secluded residentials, where a back-up alarm at 3am is not going to be appreciated.

Isn't there plans some where of on on a relay that could be switched off?

I know - search tab.
Our tractors that our 5 years old cam from the factory with a switch in the cab to turn the back up alarms off, the new ones don't have a switch. I'm assuming it's because of liability. Not hard to put a switch in. BTW the the alarms that come on our tractors are very very loud, people move because they can't handle the noise. LOL
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
242 Posts
I never use backup alarms but had a real close call at a appartment building I plow.. I almost ranover a kid that decide to run behind me.. If it wasn't for me having my window down and hearing the mother scream it would have been a disaster..:eek:.. I left that job and installed a alarm... It bugged me for a while but I got used to it and I never had a complaint from anyone..It sure beats running someone over... But... I don't think laws should be made to cover commen sence there are way to many laws now.... It should be left to the contractor...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,332 Posts
Our tractors that our 5 years old cam from the factory with a switch in the cab to turn the back up alarms off, the new ones don't have a switch. I'm assuming it's because of liability. Not hard to put a switch in. BTW the the alarms that come on our tractors are very very loud, people move because they can't handle the noise. LOL
OSHA mandates that Back up alarms are mandatory on all construction equipment (skids, loaders, tractors etc.) Not trucks though.

Back up alarm switch is a simple solution, I will have it on my next truck for sure.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
336 Posts
Hi Guys
Myself I hate back up alarms, what I did instead was install a back up Camera. I love this thing, don't know how I did with out it all of these years. It won't warn people about you backing up but you sure can see whats behind you.

Mike
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,794 Posts
I got mine switched to Brent. Its nice for daytime work for sure. People do seem to notice it, and move away or stop.
OSHA mandates that Back up alarms are mandatory on all construction equipment (skids, loaders, tractors etc.) Not trucks though.

Back up alarm switch is a simple solution, I will have it on my next truck for sure.
Honestly, I have considered--just haven't gotten around to it yet--installing them on all the trucks with a switch, so we can use them during daytime plowing.

Matt, your 450 has a switch on it now, piece of cake really.

I just don't see why our idiots in Lansing have to mandate something. These jackasses can't even follow their own rules and have a balanced budget in place by Oct 1, they have FAILED twice in 3 years now, and now they're making us spend more and more money.

We have to have 18 different licenses for plowing, which if you cross jurisdictions, your entire back window would be covered with these things. Talk about a hazard.

We have to have DOT numbers on trucks, even though many states opt out of this requirement. So as soon as you have these, you now have to have annual inspections of vehicles over 10,001; we have to get med certs for the drivers; we have to pay for the DOT numbers.

And does anyone really wonder why Michigan has been in the crapper for the past 10 years?

Throw every single one of these idiots out! They don't\can't even enforce the regulations they have now. Those muni licenses for plowing aren't even enforced and the requirements for all trucks to be lettered aren't enforced.

Beyond ridiculous!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I need to go take a happy pill and get my BP under control now.

Thanks Herm. :grinz
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,937 Posts
i think having an alarm on a truck that is not required to have one,and putting it on a switch is a liability risk....im no lawyer,but anytime you have a piece of "safety" equipment,and choose not to use it,you could then be accused of being negligent...maybe someone with more knowledge can confirm or correct me....I was told this several times,for different issues,once you have something and choose not to use it,even if it wasnt required,you can be held liabile.Also a switch opens you up to one more thing to have to do or to forget to turn on....
 
1 - 20 of 32 Posts
Top