Justice and Law Enforcement:

'Weight Bumping'--Falsifying Household Moving Weights To Increase Charges--What ICC Needs To Do

CED-79-75: Published: May 1, 1979. Publicly Released: May 1, 1979.


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About 1 million American households which move each year are not being protected adequately against the practice of "weight bumping" which artificially increases the cost of moving. Weight bumping is the falsifying of weights of household goods shipments to increase transportation charges.

The Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC) and the moving industry agree that weight bumping is a problem; they disagree on its extent. There are no ICC regulations concerning weighmasters and scale operations and only limited regulations governing weight tickets. Accordingly, ICC must rely on state and local governments to regulate weighing activities. This reliance has serious shortcomings because of insufficient and inadequate state and local controls.

Status Legend:

More Info
  • Review Pending-GAO has not yet assessed implementation status.
  • Open-Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.
  • Closed-implemented-Actions that satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.
  • Closed-not implemented-While the intent of the recommendation has not been satisfied, time or circumstances have rendered the recommendation invalid.
    • Review Pending
    • Open
    • Closed - implemented
    • Closed - not implemented

    Recommendation for Executive Action

    Recommendation: The Chairman, ICC, should: (1) direct a comprehensive study so that ICC may better measure the extent of the problem and thus assign the appropriate level of investigative and enforcement action to deal with it; (2) establish regulations regarding the weighing of interstate household goods shipments to prevent weight bumping; and (3) establish unannounced periodic inspections at weigh stations with state assistance, and investigations to reduce the practice. The Secretary of Defense should direct the Military Traffic Management Command to develop procedures for identifying shipments that warrant investigation for possible weight bumping and providing the information to the proper Defense organizations for investigation.

    Agency Affected:

    Status: Closed

    Comments: Please call 202/512-6100 for additional information.

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