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PLNA e-News: Business Resources

Pay Attention to the Basics to Avoid the Most Common FMCSA Violations

Monday, May 2, 2016   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Gregg Robertson
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Harrisburg – One the most common calls we receive at PLNA from members is about the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Act (FMCSA) regulations. The rules are detailed and complex. Unfortunately, many times the call comes after the member has been stopped and received a fine, which can run into the thousands of dollars.

According to J.J. Keller, a motor safety consultant, the top violations are also the most basic. The top three on the road violations are:

  • The vehicle is not marked according to regulations. According the FMCSA regs, the name of the company and its USDOT number must:

(1)    Appear on both sides of the self-propelled commercial motor vehicle (CMV);

(2)    Be in letters that contrast sharply in color with the background on which the letters are placed;

(3)    Be readily legible, during daylight hours, from a distance of 50 feet (15.24 meters) while the CMV is stationary; and

(4)    Be kept and maintained in a manner that retains the legibility required by paragraph (3) of this section.

  • Carrier identification not correct (wrong name or DOT number on vehicle). Even when the name and USDOT number are on the vehicle, the number may not be correct or the name of company may not be correct.

According to the FMCSA regs the name that should be on the CMV is:

The legal name or a single trade name of the motor carrier operating the self-propelled CMV, as listed on the motor carrier identification report (Form MCS-150) and submitted in accordance with § 390.19.

The main point here is that the paperwork and the name and number on the CMV must match.

  • The Unified Carrier Registration (UCR) is not current. Not much to say here. Just make sure your registration is paid and up to date.

Pay attention to these basic requirements of the FMCSA and avoid the most common causes for violations and fines.


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