Mr. Clarence Ogrodnick
Power Deck Systems, Inc.
5633 Birch Avenue
Alberta T9C 1J7
Dear Mr. Ogrodnick:
This is in reply to your fax sent to us on January 6, 1998. Your company manufactures "an after market product in North America . . . a hydraulic power deck made to load and unload cargo such as snowmobiles . . . ." The deck "mounts into the box on all makes of regular shortbox and longbox pick up trucks." You wish to ensure that it meets U.S. Federal regulations "as to width, height, length, and light location specifications" so that you can be certain that your product "is safe and legal everywhere."
There are no U.S. Federal regulations that govern the width, height, and length of your after market hydraulic power deck. Furthermore, as a general rule, the laws that govern the use of after market equipment are those of the individual States, rather than Federal law. As we are not conversant with the laws of the States, I am afraid we cannot advise you on them.
If the hydraulic power deck is added to the pickup truck by a "manufacturer, distributor, dealer, or motor vehicle repair business," under our law this modification must not create a noncompliance with Federal lighting requirements (or any other Federal motor vehicle safety standard with which the truck was manufactured to conform). Removal or obscuration of the lamp are the two principal ways in which noncompliances are created. The addition of a supplementary lamp performing the function of the original in approximately the same location is a way of ensuring that original equipment requirements continue to be met. Note that this compliance restriction applies only to the four entities named, and not to a vehicle owner who installs a power deck without the assistance of a "manufacturer, dealer, distributor or motor vehicle repair business."
If you have any questions, you may refer them to Taylor Vinson of this Office (202-366-5263).
Acting Chief Counsel