Two FMCSA rules take effect

| December 16, 2009

Two Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration regulations adopted in the waning days of the Bush administration — regarding new entrant safety assurance and intermodal equipment providers — take effect this week.

Compliance with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s new rule on new entrant safety assurance begins today, Dec. 16 – one year after the final rule was issued. The rule makes a carrier’s failure to comply with any one of 16 regulations deemed essential for basic safety management grounds for an automatic failure of a safety audit. For a copy of the regulation, go to www.regulations.gov”>www.regulations.gov and search FMCSA-2001-11061.

Under the new requirements, a newly registered truck or bus company will automatically fail its safety audit if violations of any one of 16 essential federal regulations are discovered. These regulations cover controlled substances and alcohol testing, hours-of-service rules, driver qualifications, vehicle condition and carrier insurance responsibility.
 
Failure to pass a new entrant safety audit may result in revocation of a carrier’s registration, unless that carrier takes corrective action within a time period established by FMCSA. Additionally, if certain violations are discovered during roadside inspections, the new carrier may be subject to an expedited safety audit or a compliance review that can result in fines or an out-of-service order.

Compliance with regulations addressing intermodal equipment providers (IEPs) begins Thursday, Dec. 17. The rules make IEPs subject to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations for the first time and establish shared safety responsibility among intermodal equipment providers, motor carriers and drivers. For a copy of the regulation, go to www.regulations.gov”>www.regulations.gov and search FMCSA-2005-23315.