Running a trucking business in the United States requires hoops to jump through. These include obtaining USDOT Numbers, documentation, route check, and many more. The Department of Transportation mandates registration of USDOT Numbers for trucking companies to evaluate their safety practices. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration issues USDOT Numbers for trucking companies. They also regulate the transportation industry to reduce accidents and injury by monitoring commercial vehicles and trucking companies. These ensure safe, modern, and efficient transport systems in the United States. Are you wondering if you need to have a USDOT Number.? Read on as Global Multi services explain USDOT Number and their importance
WHAT IS USDOT NUMBER?
USDOT Number is a unique identifier issued to trucking companies by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration after registering their vehicle with the Department of Transportation. It regulates the commercial driving industry to reduce accidents and injury. It also allows the collection and monitoring of trucking company safety information from safety audits, reviews of compliance, and investigations.
The USDOT ensures the United States has safe, modern, and efficient transport systems. Additionally, potential customers can use a USDOT Number to see if the trucking company they hire has registered with the U.S. Department of Transportation. They can also check its safety information from the FMCSA website.
WHO NEED THE USDOT NUMBER
The USDOT number is mandatory for trucking companies transporting passengers or hauling cargo in interstate commerce. It is also compulsory for trucking companies to transport hazardous materials across interstate and intrastate in quantities requiring a safety permit.
You also need a USDOT Number if you operate vehicles with the following:
- GVWR, GCWR, GVW, or GCW with 10,000 lbs and above.
- Transport more than eight people with the driver for compensation.
- Transport more than 15 passengers with the driver without compensation.
- Travel from one place to another within or outside a state (including outside the United States).
- Travel from one place to another within a state through other states.
IMPORTANCE OF USDOT NUMBER
Doing a diligence check on the USDOT Number of commercial vehicles is essential to ensure safety and scam. The search provides you with information that will allow you to make informed decisions when choosing a trucking company to move your freight based on their past performance. Here is the importance of the USDOT Number.
COMPILE SAFETY RECORDS
The Federal Monitor Carrier Safety Administration has websites that provide easy access to valuable safety-related information on trucking companies. But you must have the Company name, USDOT Number and Motor Carrier to access it.
SHOW SAFTEY RATINGS
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration uses safety ratings to indicate trucking company compliance. A blank safety rating often shows the company has a high crash history. The safety rating is grouped into the following:
- Satisfactory: The record reveals no evidence of non-compliance with the safety requirements.
- Conditional: The document displays the trucking company was out of compliance with one or more safety requirements.
- Unsatisfactory: The records indicate evidence of non-compliance to safety requirements.
Checking the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration database protects you from hiring trucking companies operating without proper certification. The company profile on the website contains operating status like active or authorized for household goods. Therefore, trucking companies listed on the website as “Out of Service” or “Unauthorized for Household Goods” must be avoided. Also, USDOT Numbers that do not match their company profile are a red flag that indicates the company is not safe.
CONDUCT SAFETY AUDIT
The FMCSA certified auditor is responsible for conducting safety audits at the offices of the trucking companies or electronically by submitting relevant documents to FMCSA online or by mail. The Federal Monitor Carrier Safety Administration often informs trucking companies of the type of audit they want to carry out.
During the Safety Audit, trucking companies will provide the following:
- Documentation that verifies they have established safety management controls.
- Documents about drivers and vehicles.
- General operating procedures.
- Record-keeping requirements.
SHOW PREVIOUS CRASHES
The Federal Monitor Carrier Safety Administration website lists the crash history of trucking companies. The section has four columns:
Fatal: The number in the column shows fatal accidents experienced by trucking companies
Injury: The number in the column shows the company injuries obtained by trucking companies
Tow: The number in the column shows the towing history of the trucking companies
Total: The number in the column shows the total crash incurred by the company.