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FMCSA Cuts Time to Respond for Failed New Entrant Audits
FMCSA has shortened the time in which a new entrant motor carrier can
submit evidence in response to expedited action notices and safety
audit failure notices. Under the new FMCSA policy, FMCSA must
receive a new entrant motor carrier's corrective action plan within 15
days of the new entrant safety audit failure notice or within 10 days
of the expedited action notice. If the FMCSA receives evidence
outside the new time limits, the Agency will not guarantee that the
evidence will be considered prior to revoking the carrier's authority.
The change in policy became fully effective on August 20, 2012.
AldenLaw and Hyperlogistics Group Give Back to the Wounded Warrior Program
John Schmenk, a committed member of the Disabled American Veterans Organization in Columbus, Ohio, had a vision to find transportation for a load of bottled water to the Wounded Warrior Program in Fort Knox, Kentucky. AldenLaw learned of John's goal and took up the charge to help him. Hyperlogistics Group, a third party logistics company in Columbus, Ohio, and longtime valued client, picked up on the chance to deliver the water to our military members. In appreciation of our military and our veterans' sacrifice, AldenLaw thanks John Schmenk and Hyperlogistics Group for making this goal a reality.
FMCSA Implements Changes to CSA Program
The Federal Motor Carrier safety Administration has
implemented 11 changes to its Compliance, Safety, Accountability ("
John Alden Presents at Columbus Regional Logistics Council Event
John Alden served as a featured speaker in a Columbus Regional Logistics Council panel discussion on "2013 Trends in Transportation" at Station 67 in Columbus, Ohio. John addressed Logistics Council members and other local industry leaders on current topics in transportation law. Highlights of John's presentation include new federal legislation heightening requirements for brokers, trends in classification of independent contractors and employees, and a pending appeal in the Supreme Court of Ohio regarding the ability of municipalities to impose income taxes on Ohio trucking companies. Please call John Alden or Tony Palmer at (614) 221-1306 with any questions regarding these topics or other transportation law issues.
Truckers Against Trafficking Given $50,000 Matching Grant Opportunity
today through the end of 2012, The Greenbaum Foundation will provide a
dollar-for-dollar matching grant for any and all donations made to
Truckers Against Trafficking (TAT), up to $50,000. Your $10 will be
$20. Your $50 will be $100. If we reach $50,000, that will be $100,000.
TAT’s annual budget continues to grow as more and more
individual truckers, trucking companies and state trucking associations
come on board, and we supply them with materials, including training
DVDs, wallet cards, brochures and vent window decals.
fund and work with many of the best nonprofit organizations throughout
the world,” said Jim Greenbaum, founder and managing director of
The Greenbaum Foundation. “Few accomplish so much with so little
as does Truckers Against Trafficking. The work and accomplishments of
Kendis Paris and her team are awe-inspiring. And, with sufficient
funding, there’s no telling how much greater of an impact they
will have in the fight against human trafficking. I am delighted
to make this matching grant offer for Truckers Against
OOIDA Sues FMCSA over Driver Safety Records
Tony Palmer, AldenLaw
and four commercial truck drivers filed a lawsuit against
the FMCSA on July 13, 2012, in the United States District Court
for the District of Columbia. OOIDA and the plaintiff drivers
allege that the FMCSA failed to remove driver violations from the
MCMIS System. Three of the plaintiff drivers had citations in
which a court either dismissed the charge or found the driver not
guilty. Currently, the agency is not required to remove a
dismissed citation. In these cases, state enforcement officials
refused to remove the violations from the MCMIS System after a DataQ
challenge. In the lawsuit, OOIDA claims that the continued
reporting of these violations is in contravention of the Fair Credit
Reporting Act, the Privacy Act, and other provisions of federal law.
All drivers and motor carriers will benefit if OOIDA is
successful in obtaining a corurt order that requires FMCSA to purge
violations from the MCMIS System where there is no judicial
determination of guilt, the citation was dismissed, or the driver was
found not guilty by a court.
FMCSA Halts Accountability Determinations in CSA Crash BASIC
Tony Palmer, AldenLaw
For those waiting for the implementation of an accountability determination for crashes in the CSA Crash BASIC, the wait will continue. In an apparent response to safety advocacy groups, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration recently halted its plan to introduce an updated system that would weight the preventability of a crash included in the CSA Crash BASIC. The status quo remains, such that all recordable crashes, regardless of whether they were preventable, are included in a carrier's CSA Crash BASIC. This is unwelcome news to carriers, as currently all recordable crashes, preventable and non-preventable, are weighed the same. The FMCSA has not announced any plans or schedule to revisit an accountability system for crashes.
FMCSA ADDS CELL PHONE VIOLATIONS TO SMS UNSAFE DRIVINIG BASIC
In February, Motor Carriers will notice a change in their Safety Measurement System (SMS) scores on the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) website. Violations of the new federal cell phone use regulations will be included in a carrier's Unsafe Driving BASIC. The severity scoring weight for a violation is 10 points - the highest amount for any violation. The federal cell phone use regulations took effect January 3, 2012. AldenLaw recommends that carriers instruct their drivers about the new cell phone use regulations and implement a consistent policy. Please call John Alden or Tony Palmer if you are a carrier or a driver and have any questions about the new federal cell phone use regulation
U.S. DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION INCREASES HOURS OF SERVICE REGULATIONS
Compliance Deadline Set for Canadian eManifest Requirements
IDLING REGULATIONS GUIDE – UPDATED
The American Transportation Institute updated its Compendium
of Idling Regulations which includes
summaries of idling regulations across the
Predicting Truck Crash Involvement: A 2011 Update
The American Transportation Research Institute has published an update to its 2005 report on truck crash predictability. The 2011 update was conducted to review the impact of recent regulatory changes on driver behaviors and crashes. The full report can be accessed here:
The FMCSA will replace any ALERT symbol currently displayed in orange on the SMS public website with the following symbol displayed with the color gold, as viewed on the banner at http://csa.fmcsa.dot.gov/default.aspx.
will replace the current language displayed on the public SMS website screen
entitled “USE OF SMS
data in the Safety Measurement System (SMS) is performance data used by the
Agency and enforcement community. A symbol, based on that data, indicates that
FMCSA may prioritize a motor carrier for further monitoring. The symbol is not
intended to imply any federal safety rating of the carrier pursuant to 49
Finally, the FMCSA will delete the word “established,” currently used in the phrase “established intervention thresholds,” from the footnote contained in the Legend on the public SMS website that defines what is meant by the symbol. The FMCSA will also delete the word “established” from the phrase “established intervention thresholds” in any other place the phrase appears on the public SMS website.
FMCSA ELIMINATES CARGO INSURANCE REQUIREMENT
PROTECT YOUR DRIVERS AND YOUR SAFETY RATING
A case involving a CDL driver cited for an out-of-service violation who challenged the citation was recently heard by the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio. The cited violation carried a mandatory 60-day commercial driver's license suspension under the federal motor carrier safety regulations and Ohio law. With the assistance of the Ohio Trucking Association and through expert testimony on behalf of the driver at a day-long PUCO hearing, we showed that the alleged violation, a crack in the frame of the trailer, was not an out-of-service offense according to the CVSA criteria. Following the hearing, the state offered to amend the violation to a lesser offense which does not carry a CDL suspension, and the driver and the motor carrier accepted.
For more information on this case or other motor carrier / CDL matters, contact Tony Palmer or John Alden at their office, 614-221-1306, via facsimile at 614-221-3551, or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
WARNING ON FRAUDULENT LETTERS FROM U.S. DOT "PROCUREMENT OFFICE"
Many motor carriers have received letters purporting to be from the U.S. Department of Transportation Procurement Office requesting "authorization to release financial information", signed by individuals entitled "Senior Procurement Officer". These letters are fraudulent, attempting to get carriers' bank account information. The DOT webpage concerning the fraud is http://www.dot.gov/ost/m60/fraudulent_letters.htm.
If you receive one of these letters, please do not respond. Instead,
inform your company personnel of this unauthorized financial information
request to protect your business. For more information, contact Tony Palmer
at AldenLaw, at 614-221-1306.
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