Appendix - Chapter 20 Improper Equipment Offenses
Effective August 1, 2011
Set out below is a table of Chapter 20 “improper equipment offenses."
Effective for costs assessed or collected on or after August 1, 2011(unless the waiver exception of G.S. 7A-304(g) applies), a defendant who is found guilty or responsible for an “improper equipment offense" under Chapter 20 must pay a fee of $50.00 in addition to the standard Chapter 20 criminal/infraction costs amount. See G.S. 7A-304(a)(4b). The Office of the Clerk of Superior Court will remit this additional $50.00 to the Department of Correction for placement in a new Statewide Misdemeanant Confinement Fund.Id. (For more information on the Statewide Misdemeanant Confinement Fund, see S.L. 2011-192 (HB 642), § 7.)
The Chief District Court Judges have traditionally limited “improper equipment offenses" on the list of waivable traffic offenses to equipment violations found in Part 9 of Article 3 of Chapter 20.
1 The judges have, however, distinguished “equipment violations" in Part 9 from “height, length and width" violations in Part 9.2 Using the waiver list as guidance, the NCAOC interprets the “improper equipment" fee to apply to any offense in Part 9 other than (i) violations relating to vehicle height, length and width and (ii) violations that otherwise could be considered equipment violations, but for which the equipment element of the offense is derivative of the height, width or length nature of the offense. An example of the latter would be violations of G.S. 20-117 (flags and lights at the end of loads), for which the equipment (the flag) is required only because of a load that has extended the overall length of the vehicle.
1 See Traffic Offenses for which Court Appearance May Be Waived (December 1, 2010), Item B.37., at:http://www.nccourts.org/Forms/Documents/1219.pdf.
2 See Traffic Offenses for which Court Appearance May Be Waived (December 1, 2010), Item B.36.
3 The table does not include a violation of G.S. 20-129(a)(4) (offense code 4446), for failing to burn headlights when windshield wipers are in use, because the statute prohibits the assessment of court costs for that offense.
For each improper equipment offense, the table lists the statutory citation, the offense code description (or simply a brief description of the offense if there is no offense code for the violation), and the offense code for the violation where one exists.
IMPROPER LOADING/COVERING VEH
BUS, TRUCK OR TRUCK TRACTOR MIRROR VIOLATION
FLAT TRUCK OR TOBACCO TRUCK LOAD VIOLATION
LOW-SPEED VEHICLE EQUIPMENT VIOLATION
TIRE RESTRICTIONS EQUIP VIOL
IMPROPER STEERING MECHANISM
IMPROPER EQUIP - SPEEDOMETER
HORN AND WARNING DEVICE VIO
DIRECTIONAL SIGNALS EQUIP VIOL
WINDSHIELD WIPER EQUIP VIOL
WINDOW TINTING VIOL
EMISSIONS CONTROL VIOLATION
FAIL TO BURN HEADLAMPS
DRIVE WITHOUT TWO HEADLAMPS
MOTORCYCLE FAIL BURN HEADLAMP
MOTORCYCLE FAIL BURN TAILLIGHT