DOT compliance is a top priority in the trucking industry and was put in place by the United States Department of Transportation. Some of the compliance include obtaining IFTA License, MC Authority, IFTA Registration, IFTA Decal, IRP Plates, and IFTA Permit. This set of rules governs all aspects of commercial vehicles to ensure the safety of trucks, drivers, and the general public.
Compliance is taken seriously as DOT truck inspections and other enforcement measures are constantly in play. Therefore, trucking companies must be familiar with the intricacies of compliance.
Agencies such as the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration aim to ensure trucking companies and drivers conform to safety requirements and other guidelines that affect the trucking industry. Hence, trucking companies must stay on top of regulatory changes, file IFTA Fuel tax services, IFTA Quarterly Fuel Tax Return, and monitor their compliance scores to operate and grow a successful business.
In this blog, we’ll outline some valuable tips for maintaining and monitoring your regulatory compliance to avoid penalties and other enforcement actions that can impact the growth of your business.
WHAT COMPLIANCE ENTAILS
DOT compliance has a set of rules and regulations that trucking companies need to know. The rules can be divided into two categories.
Fleet compliance involves ensuring every vehicle in your fleet is registered with the Department of Transportation. Having a compliance requirement makes it easier to review compliance mandatories. It also ensures you never miss any regulation. Creating well-detailed and relevant DOT compliance for your operations helps you avoid penalties. Here are a few DOT compliance guidelines to consider:
Guidelines for fleet compliance:
- Have a current copy of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration regulations at all times
- Document your result for pre-trip and post-trip inspection of all vehicles.
- Truck and trailer routine maintenance program and document all activities
- All trucks and trailers must have an official DOT registration number
- A detailed record of incidents that occur on the road
Driver compliance is for drivers driving DOT-registered motor vehicles. Having a compliance list ensures nothing falls through the cracks.
Guidelines for drivers’ compliance:
- Ensure your driver has a copy of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration regulations
- Have a signed agreement from each driver that they have read and understood their responsibilities according to the FMCSA rules
- Record of driver qualifications and their safety history.
- Record all hours of service of each driver working for you.
- Complete drug testing for each driver and retain documentation before employing them.
- Organize random drug testing for all your truck drivers and record the results
- Perform drug and alcohol testing according to DOT regulations for all trainers and supervisors.
VEHICLES THAT NEED DOT COMPLIANCE
Not all commercial motor vehicles require DOT compliance. DOT compliance is only mandatory for commercial motor carriers that must register with the Department of Transportation and have a USDOT Number.
They include the following:
- Vehicles transporting hazardous material or other materials as specified by the Department of Transportation.
- Vehicles transporting more than eight passengers in exchange for compensation (including the driver)
- Vehicles transporting more than fifteen passengers. (Including the driver)
- Vehicles operating with a Gross Vehicle Weight of 10,001 pounds or more
GET FAMILIAR WITH IFTA AND IRP
Trucking companies operating across state lines or planning to in the future must understand the eligibility, requirements, and compliance of IFTA and IRP. Each agency’s purpose is mandatory to stay compliant, and knowing about their roles, regulations, and policies is key to a successful trucking business.
WHAT IS IFTA?
IFTA Is an agreement between the lower 48 states in the United States and 10 Canadian provinces.
For years, motor carriers applied for state licenses and file fuel taxes with each state based on fuel purchased and consumed within each jurisdiction. But the process was highly tedious and inefficient. So, multiple states in the United States come together to form IFTA.
This cooperative agreement simplifies the requirements of motor carriers. IFTA filing allows motor carriers to use a single license and file IFTA Renewal and IFTA Fuel Tax Return through their base jurisdiction.
Processing IFTA Licensing and Renewals can be time-consuming and tiring as it requires much paperwork and figuring out how much you owe in taxes. You can also get bogged down with the filing and may not fully understand how it works.
Handling it yourself can lead to filing mistakes that could cause costly fines and red tape. You can avoid all these by seeking IFTA filing assistance from Global Multi Services. Stop worrying about making mistakes or submitting inaccurate information. We have experience with IFTA Permitting Service and will take care of the details for you.
WHAT IS IRP?
The International Registration Plan manages the registration and collection of apportioned fees from commercial motor vehicles traveling in two or more jurisdictions. The agency improves interstate business by encouraging the use of United States highway systems.
ARE YOU STAYING IN COMPLIANCE?
Tucking companies should review their DOT compliance regularly to ensure they are meeting or exceeding the minimum standard. Not meeting the DOT requirement could result in a costly fine and license revoking. Most importantly, it could put drivers and other road users at risk of accidents, injuries, or death.
Trucking companies should prioritize creating systems to optimize operations. Staying on top of regulatory changes, organizing training for drivers, and implementing strict rules to streamline regulatory compliance for drivers will make their trucking business stay compliant in the industry.
Stop worrying about filing mistakes and paying fines. Let Global Multi Services take over your FTA Fuel tax services. We will get your IFTA Licensing and Renewal done correctly and on time.