Greetings to all new owner-operators, who have finally got their own authority and permits to operate their commercial trucks. Now they book their own loads and no longer depend on the on the company they were “Leased To” before.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) requires that you undergo a safety audit within the first 90 days after your permits and authority were granted, and you must have all the documents ready to be presented before you start driving your commercial truck. Those are as follows:
Driver Related Documents
- List for Commercial Drivers – All carrier companies must provide a list of currently employed drivers. This list is used to assess applicability of all the regulations, and must contain the following:
- Driver License: A copy must be kept in the file.
- Driver Records of Duty and supporting documents: Must be maintained for 6 months.
- Drivers Motor Vehicle record: A copy must be maintained in the driver’s file.
- Medical Certificate: All carriers must ensure drivers are medically qualified to operate a CMV.
Commercial Vehicle Related Documents
- In the current list of trucks and trailers, it must include unit number; vehicle identification number; plate number; and State.
- Vehicle inspections including the Annual Inspection Report.
- Carriers that transport Hazardous Materials must keep all shipping documents for each type of HM.
- Insurance Policies must be in accordance with the minimum limits established for the type of operation the truck will do.
- A Drug and Alcohol program must be in place and proof of random enrollment is a must.
- Accident Register: All carriers involved in a FMCSA-reportable crash in the past 3 years must retain an Accident Register.
If you received a letter or phone call by a new entrant inspector who asks you to send all the documents required, make sure you are assisted by an expert to review it before you send it. You do not want to make a mistake or even worse, be put out of service for 30 days. You can call me at (909)390-3656 and I will gladly review it. Remember that each case is different; come to visit me and together we can analyze your problem.