Attractions on semi-trailers are often oversized vehicles in terms of their dimensions or weight, making them complicated to register. What’s the solution?
HOW TO REGISTER NEW VEHICLES FOR TRAILER-MOUNTED ATTRACTIONS
by Enrico Fabbri
When buying a new or used ride, operators almost always encounter difficulties in registering the semi-trailer and thus getting its registration plates. So let’s try to explain what the most common problems are and how to solve them.
First of all, it should be noted that every vehicle travelling on the road must have a permanent or temporary registration plate, with the penalty for non-compliance being confiscation of the vehicle and hefty fines. In addition, there is the obligation and clear responsibility of each manufacturer to allow the semi-trailer to leave the factory only if it has a registration plate. If not, the manufacturer also becomes liable, along with the driver of the vehicle and the owner of the semi-trailer. For this reason, many manufacturers have taken steps to find the simplest and quickest options to obtain the necessary documents for the registration of their ride vehicles.
The second important notion to understand is what ‘oversized’ semitrailer means. This is a vehicle that exceeds one or more of the standard dimensions, namely: 13.6m long; 2.55m wide and 4.00m high. Manufacturers have done their utmost to limit the dimensions of semi-trailers and therefore usually these only exceed the length limit. There are also cases in which the semi-trailers exceed the weight limit of 36,000 kg.
All oversized semi-trailers must have special permits to travel on the road. Depending on the total size and weight, these permits may be particularly complex and expensive, and may entail significant restrictions, especially when the weight is excessive. All this becomes more complicated when the operator needs to travel across several European countries, because each region, motorway and country require different permits.
Over the last 10/15 years, the procedures needed for the registration of semi-trailers have been simplified and harmonised throughout Europe thanks to Directive 2007/46/EC, which establishes obligations for the mutual recognition of documents between member States. When an application is made to issue a semi-trailer registration plate, whether for a new or used ride, a technical inspection is required at one of the appointed centres in Italy or any other European country. This inspection requires detailed documentation that specifies the type of axles used, a drawing of the pneumatic braking system and the type of lights installed. If the technical examination is in order, a certificate is issued that then allows the local registration offices to issue the plates and the vehicle logbook.
There are technical personnel who can follow these very complex procedures, taking into account the dimensions of the semi-trailer and deciding whether to apply for:
(a) approval for a standard semi-trailer or
(b) approval for an oversized semi-trailer.
In addition, if the applicant is a manufacturer, it is possible to apply for limited series approval: this means that the first prototype is inspected, and then it will be possible to register up to 500 identical units; or approval for one vehicle only.
Current legislation also allows type approval to be issued, i.e. approval that permits subsequent registration (with the physical registration plates) in any European country. The costs of these procedures are not very high, especially if prepared by the manufacturer, as they will only have to complete them once and then simply issue a certificate.
If, on the contrary, the procedure is to be performed by the operator, the cost could be up to € 5,000 for each approval. When selling a ride attraction to a customer who is resident in a different country than yours, another procedure must then be followed. First of all, your semi-trailer requires a registration plate, so you must notify the local office of the cancellation of the registration plate for sale abroad. A temporary registration plate for export is then issued. The customer who purchases acquires the ride will then be able to easily register the semitrailer in their own country using the data sheet that was already filed in your country.
This is the basic information needed to understand the technical procedures. Contact your trade associations for more information: they will be able to give you details of the technical offices that can produce the necessary documents and carry out the inspections on the semi-trailers.
Written by Mr. Enrico Fabbri email@example.com
Article originally published in Games Industry (Italy) magazine
Original date: July 2018