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Semis cutting through Ashland are uncommon

Sometimes I see a few big rigs going through downtown Ashland on Siskiyou Boulevard and wonder if they are doing this to skirt having to stop at the Interstate 5 truck inspection — the few times it is open. Can the local police ticket the drivers, or would it be difficult to enforce?

— Joe C.

Police tell us it's pretty uncommon to see semi-trailer drivers hopping off I-5 to squeeze through Ashland before jumping back onto the freeway so they can skip the weigh station, Joe.

It's also a tough act to prove.

"I can't remember the last time we ticketed someone for that," said Sgt. Jeff Proulx with Oregon State Police.

Proulx said he's seen commercial trucks helmed by drivers who are new to the area, led astray by their GPS.

"It may send you up (Highway) 99 and straight through the town of Ashland, which is not what they want to do," Proulx said. "They do not want to put a big rig through town."

In addition, Proulx said, they may just be making a legitimate delivery at an area business. All that to say: Unless a semi truck is violating some other law, state police typically won't stop one that's traveling through town.

Local police likely won't either. In an email, Ashland police Chief Tighe O'Meara said ticketing semi-trailer drivers is problematic and labor-intensive to enforce if there is a violation.

"Absent other circumstances being present, I generally don't see it as an efficient use of (an) APD officer's time to enforce," he said.

— Send questions to “Since You Asked,” Mail Tribune Newsroom, P.O. Box 1108, Medford, OR 97501; by fax to 541-776-4376; or by email to youasked@mailtribune.com. To see a collection of columns, go to mailtribune.com/youasked. We’re sorry, but the volume of questions received prevents us from answering all of them.