Kathy Close - DOT Editor - J. J. Keller & Associates, Inc.
April 10 , 2020
IMPROVE YOUR ROADSIDE INSPECTIONS
No matter what type of carrier you are, the goal of a roadside inspection is always no violations.
This new guide for 2020 ensures there are no surprises for your drivers. It details each inspection step, what the officer will ask for and look at, and expectations for your driver and unit.
A motor carrier's DOT safety rating indicates whether it has adequate and functioning safety management controls to meet the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration's (FMCSA) safety fitness standard based on the results of a compliance review (CR).
The safety fitness standard is determined through the results of a CR. The areas of compliance for the standard are outlined in §385.5.
During an audit, you must produce the following records:
Enforcement will also look at your safety management controls. Safety management controls are the systems and processes you have in place to ensure your safety program is working effectively. An auditor would expect to see records associated with training, policies, and procedures, along with mechanisms to monitor and track compliance. The FMCSA would also expect to see documented corrective actions when these mechanisms reveal a breakdown in your safety efforts.
In addition, the safety rating process uses your:
The results of your CR will lead to one of three possible safety ratings:
If your organization has never had a CR, your fleet will be unrated on the SAFER site.
Your DOT safety rating is available to you — and the general public — at FMCSA’s SAFER website.
Since anyone can look at your safety record, a poor safety rating may affect your insurance rates and hurt your company’s reputation, hinder your driver recruiting efforts and result in a loss of customers.
To help avoid a less-than-favorable safety rating, you need to understand what the agency will examine during an audit.
If you receive a conditional or unsatisfactory rating, you may request a rating change at any time. The FMCSA would expect to see a safety management plan to address the violations discovered during the CR. Based on the contents of the plan, the FMCSA may issue an improved safety rating.
Request your free compliance review with a J. J. Keller compliance specialist today. They’ll review your safety program, help you identify any compliance gaps, and provide guidance on how you can improve.
Maintaining a solid DOT safety rating is critical to your reputation as a motor carrier. Learn more about what the FMCSA evaluates during an audit.
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