The Basics of

DOT Compliance

Motor carriers must follow regulations from the Department of Transportation (DOT) and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). These guidelines ensure that truck drivers as well as others on the road are as safe as possible. Because there are so many different rules to follow, it can be difficult to keep track. HDS Safety Services is here to help motor carriers develop and maintain DOT-compliant safety programs.

Here are some of the basic areas of DOT compliance:

Hiring DOT-Compliant Drivers

When you hire drivers to operate commercial motor vehicles (CMVs), you must ensure that they meet all federal requirements. You will need to keep a file that includes all records pertaining to each driver. This will include commercial driver’s license (CDL) information as well as a list of all driving violations or accidents that the driver was involved in. You will need to verify all incidents within the last three years with previous employers. 

The qualification file must also contain ongoing updates. One of these updates is the motor vehicle record for each driver, which motor carriers must update each year. CMV drivers must also undergo a physical by a licensed medical examiner every 24 months. HDS Safety Services can help you maintain detailed and compliant driver qualification files. 

Drug Testing

One of the most important components of motor carrier safety is drug and alcohol testing. DOT/FMCSA guidelines require you to test at specific times during the course of a driver’s employment. These include: pre-employment as well as randomly, after accidents, before returning to duty, or if there is reasonable suspicion (both drug and alcohol testing). We can help you make sure you know when to drug test your drivers and we operate one of the largest random testing consortiums in Arizona. 

Hours of Service

The DOT and FMCSA have strict rules for hours of service (HOS). These guidelines outline required rest periods and maximum driving time. Some of these regulations for property-carrying drivers include:

11-Hour Driving Limit:

A CMV driver may only drive for 11 hours after 10 consecutive hours off-duty.

Required Rest Breaks:

A driver may not operate a CMV unless they have had a break of at least 30 minutes within the last eight hours.

Weekly Time On-Duty:

The limit for cumulative time on-duty is 60 hours for seven consecutive days or 70 hours for eight consecutive days. After this time period, a driver must have 34 consecutive hours off-duty before they can begin driving again. 

The easiest way to manage HOS compliance is by using an electronic logging device (ELD). HDS Safety Services offers ELD auditing to ensure that you are adhering to federal regulations. 

We Can Help Ensure DOT Compliance

Driver qualification, drug testing, and hours of services are only a few of the many rules and regulations that the DOT and FMCSA have implemented to ensure motor carrier safety. Managing these requirements is time-consuming and any mistake can lead to serious consequences. When you hire HDS Safety Services, we will do the hard work for you and will make sure you meet and exceed all DOT safety standards. 

Contact us today to learn more about our DOT and FMCSA compliance services.