USDOT unit's proposed rule aims to better detect unsafe commercial vehicles

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The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), a unit of the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT), recently proposed a new rule that would help the FMCSA better detect commercial motor carriers on the road, such as semis, that may post a threat to public safety.

The rule, which is a Safety Fitness Determination (SFD) Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM), applies specifically to non-compliant motor carriers. It serves to modify the safety-fitness rating methodology of the FMCSA.

“Ensuring that motor carriers are operating safely on our nation’s roadways is one of our highest priorities,” U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said. “Using all available information to achieve more timely assessments will allow us to better identify unsafe companies and get them off the road.”

The new rule unites inspections of on-road safety data with crash reports and carrier investigations. Using this information, the FMCSA will be able to determine the overall safety fitness of each motor carrier every month.

“This update to our methodology will help the agency focus on carriers with a higher crash risk,” FMCSA Acting Administrator Scott Darling, said. “Carriers that we identify as unfit to operate will be removed from our roadways until they improve.”

The new proposed rule is scheduled to be included in the Federal Register of the FMCSA.

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