A Middletown, Ohio truck driver for a North Carolina firm received a hefty fine of $37754.54 for driving an overloaded truck that got stuck and tipped while making a turn in mid-March in eastern Pennsylvania. Bethlehem, Pa., police Capt. David Kravatz said James E. Stephenson, 48, of Middletown, and his employer, Guy M. Turner Inc., of Greensboro, N.C., received 3 citations, including one for exceeding the maximum gross vehicle weight. The fine was the largest ever in Bethlehem, he said. Kravatz said neither Stephenson nor the firm had the proper permits or Pennsylvania State Police escort to haul a 213215-pound steel cylinder that was described as a motor shaft for a large turbine. (Note: That cylinder weighs about as much as the Space Shuttle!) He said the North Carolina firm had only applied for an overweight permit and not the "super load" permit which included the police escort. He said city police were not notified about the truck. Kravatz said load was picked up in Allentown, Pa., on March 12 and was heading through south Bethlehem. He said the truck, which was more than 160 feet long and 16 feet wide, got stuck on a crown of a road while trying to make an 85-degree turn because of the hefty weight of the trailer. "A state trooper in town found the truck and got him off the road and called city police," Kravatz said. "We tried to help him, but he (Stephenson) wanted to do it himself and caught the truck up a second time. We gave him eight or 10 opportunities to do it but when he could not, that forced us to call in heavy tows (trucks)." Kravatz said the truck "created an incredible traffic backup" about the time of shift change at a large hospital. "The hospital was upset and we took a beating from the public that day," he said. "But everyone wanted to see it." After 3 weeks, the company obtained the proper permits and arranged the escort that enabled the truck to leave Bethlehem on Wednesday, April 1. As of Thursday, April 2, Kravatz said the local court has not said whether the citations were being contested or if the hefty fine was paid. "Most trucking companies do comply with the law and are legal because they don't want any problems," Kravatz said. Officials at Guy M. Turner Inc. did not return calls for comment on Thursday. There was no phone listing for Stephenson in the Middletown, Ohio area.