- Behavior Analysis and Safety Improvement Categories – BASICs
- Biennial Update
- Bill of Lading – BOL or B/L
- Commercial Driver’s License – CDL
- Compliance Review
- Compliance, Safety, Accountability – CSA
- CSA Score
- DAC Report
- DOT Supervisor Training
- Drug and Alcohol Consortium
- Electronic Logging Device – ELD/E-Log
- Federal Highway Administration – FHWA
- Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration – FMCSA
- Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations – FMCSR
- Form 2290
- Form OP-1
- Gross Vehicle Combined Rating – GVCR
- Gross Vehicle Weight Rating – GVWR
- Hazardous Materials – HAZMAT
- Heavy Vehicle Use Tax – HVUT
- Hotshot Trucker
- Hours of Service – HOS
- International Fuel Tax Agreement – IFTA
- International Registration Plan – IRP
- Interstate Commerce
- Interstate Commerce Commission – ICC
- Intrastate Commerce
- MC Number
- New Entrant Safety Assurance Program
- New Entrant Safety Audit
- Operating Authority
- Owner Operator
- Safety Measurement System – SMS
- Safety Rating
- Unified Carrier Registration – UCR
- Unified Registration System – URS
- USDOT Number
When it comes to starting your own trucking company it can be quite confusing to sort through all the laws and regulations set by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). Here are a few definitions of common terms, regulations, and registrations in the trucking industry to make the research process a little easier.
Behavior Analysis and Safety Improvement Categories – BASICs
- Unsafe driving
- Crash indicators
- Hours-of-service compliance
- Vehicle maintenance
- Controlled substances/alcohol
- Hazardous materials compliance
- Driver fitness
How We Can Help:If your BASICs scores are high, you could be faced with a compliance review. Give us a call to learn how we can help you keep your BASICs scores low and stay compliant with the FMCSA.
The biennial update is an FMCSA requirement of all entities under its jurisdiction, i.e. owner operators, to update their USDOT number and information, even if no details have changed. If you are a motor carrier and don’t update your information every two years, you could be subject to a fine or your USDOT number could be inactivated. Also, keep in mind, some states require you to update it annually.. You can learn more about the biennial update here.
How We Can Help:
We can update your USDOT for you and keep you up-to-date with any other forms and paperwork that need to be renewed. Give us a call to get started.
Bill of Lading – BOL or B/L
The Bill of Lading is a contract issued by the shipper to the carrier that details what’s being shipped, where the load is being transported to, and how payment is expected to be fulfilled. Factoring companies can help take care of the BOL for you by giving you payment for the job and later billing the shipper. Learn more about what factoring companies are and how they can help you run your trucking company.
How We Can Help:In order to become a broker, you’ll need to make sure you have the correct authority. We’re a phone call away to help you sort through all the paperwork to get everything you need to get started.
Commercial Driver’s License – CDL
A Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) allows someone to operate certain commercial motor vehicles, depending on the CDL Classification. There are three main types of CDLs:
- Class A - Able to operate any combination of vehicles with a GCWR of 26,001 lbs. or more to include a towed vehicle heavier than 10,000 lbs. Class A vehicles include tractor-trailers, truck and trailer combinations, and flatbeds.
- Class B - Able to operate a single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 lbs. or heavier and/or any vehicle that is towing another vehicle up to 10,000 lbs. Some examples of Class B vehicles are straight trucks and large buses.
- Class C - Able to operate a vehicle that does not meet the criteria of either a Class A or Class B license and is meant to transport at least 16 passengers or HAZMAT with the proper endorsements. Class C vehicles are usually small HAZMAT vehicles or passenger vans or buses.
- You have poor CSA BASIC scores.
- You are requesting a safety rating change.
- Your company had a major accident.
- Someone filed for a complaint investigation.
- Your drivers had roadside inspections that resulted in out-of-service violations.
- You failed a new entrant safety audit.
How We Can Help:We offer an easy-to-follow DOT Audit Assistance Package to make sure that you pass!
Compliance, Safety, Accountability – CSA
How We Can Help:If your CSA score isn’t what you want it to be, give us a call! We can help you create a corrective action plan to prove to the FMCSA that your business is following all the safety regulations.
A DAC report is an overview of a trucker’s past records. It holds key information for employers looking to hire a trucker, including:
- Employment history
- DOT physical results
- Criminal background checks
DOT Supervisor Training
How We Can Help:If you are required by the DOT to provide a supervisor training as part of your trucking company, leave it to us! Take our online 120-minute course that meets the FMCSA's requirements.
Drug and Alcohol Consortium
How We Can Help:Are you an owner operator and need to be part of a drug and alcohol consortium? Join ours.
Electronic Logging Device – ELD/E-Log
Federal Highway Administration – FHWA
The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) currently maintains highways, tunnels, and bridges. It used to be called the Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC) and provided trucking companies and owner operators their operating authority until the FMCSA was introduced.
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration – FMCSA
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is part of the Department of Transportation. The FMCSA creates and enforces regulations to prevent commercial motor vehicle-related fatalities, crashes, and injuries.
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations – FMCSR
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSR) is the general title for any of the regulations set by the FMCSA as requirements for motor carriers to keep them safe both on and off the road.
The Form 2290 is a tax form used to file your Heavy Vehicle Use Tax (HVUT). Motor carriers are required to submit this form if they have registered or are required to register a motor vehicle with a weight of 55,000 pounds or more in their name.
How We Can Help:
Give us a call, and we’ll provide the resources you need to make sure this tax form is filed correctly before the August 31st deadline.
How We Can Help:We can fill out this form out for you as part of our operating authority package.
Gross Vehicle Combined Rating – GVCR
The maximum weight of your vehicle and any trailers attached. Note: The GVCR can be less than both your vehicle’s GVWR and the trailer’s GVWR.
Gross Vehicle Weight Rating – GVWR
The Gross Vehicle Weight Rating is the maximum weight limit for your vehicle, meaning the weight of your vehicle plus any passengers, accessories, or loads in your vehicle. It’s different from a GVCR.
Hazardous Materials – HAZMAT
Hazardous materials as classified by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. If you choose to haul HAZMAT, whether as a company driver or owner operator, you must have the proper endorsements on your CDL as mandated by the DOT.
Heavy Vehicle Use Tax – HVUT
A tax that must be paid if using a vehicle that has a registered gross weight equal to or more than 55,000 lbs. The Form 2290 is used to file for the HVUT.
How We Can Help:
We can make sure that your Form 2290 is filled out properly. Give us a call, and we can provide you with the resources you need to file this tax and not pay more than you need to.
How to Become a Hotshot Trucker:If you want to be a hotshot trucker operating under your own operating authority, we can take care of all the paperwork for you!
Hours of Service – HOS
The Hours of Service (HOS) is the maximum number of hours drivers can work consecutively, as set by the FMCSA. The HOS are often tracked using paper logs or ELDs.
We cover ELDs more in-depth in episode 16 of our podcast Haulin Assets.
International Fuel Tax Agreement – IFTA
An agreement among the United States and some of the provinces in Canada. Rather than calculating fuel taxes based on how much fuel is bought where, IFTA takes into account the proportion of miles traveled in each state to determine how much of the fuel tax should go to each state.
International Registration Plan – IRP
A fee motor carriers pay to account for operation throughout the U.S. and some of the provinces in Canada. Rather than calculating the exact number of miles traveled in each state to determine the cost, the IRP fee is calculated based on a percentage of the distance traveled in each state compared to the total amount driven.
How We Can Help:
Registering for the IRP can be tricky. If you are based in Utah, Progressive Reporting can help you fill out the paperwork and determine exactly how much you need to pay, so you aren’t paying more than you need to for your IRP fee. Learn more about our IRP registration services.
Interstate Commerce Commission – ICC
The old name for the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA). The ICC used to be in charge of handling operating authority back until 1995. It has since been replaced with the FMCSA.
How We Can Help:If you need an MC Number, leave it to us! We can get you your MC number as part of our new motor carrier authority package.
The form necessary to obtain a USDOT number. This form outlines all of the business information about your company that the FMCSA needs to know. In order to stay compliant, the MCS-150 needs to be updated as part of the biennial update.
New Entrant Safety Assurance Program
How We Can Help:If you have any questions about the FMCSA’s safety programs, give us a call and we’ll be happy to work through the concerns you have and keep your company compliant with the FMCSA.
New Entrant Safety Audit
How We Can Help:If you need your operating authority, it’s important to get the right type. As part of our new motor carrier operating authority package, we can get exactly what you need and more. Just give us a call to get started.
- Leased Owner Operators. Work for a company under another company’s operating authority.
- Independent Owner Operators. Act as their own trucking company under their own operating authority.
Safety Measurement System – SMS
The Safety Measurement System (SMS) is a tracking system under the FMCSA that reports data from roadside inspections, crash reports, and investigations. The SMS logs the data under seven BASICs. Much of the data in the SMS is open to the general public to view scores of any trucking company or owner operator.
How We Can Help:If your safety rating isn’t satisfactory, we can help you create a safety upgrade request and any necessary corrective action plans to prove to the FMCSA that your company is operating safely.
Unified Carrier Registration – UCR
How We Can Help:If you need to pay the UCR fee, we can take care of it for you, at a price based on the number of trucks in your fleet.
Unified Registration System – URS
The Unified Registration System (URS) is the online system set in place by the FMCSA for new motor carrier authority applicants. This system replaced submitting physical copies of forms to the FMCSA for new motor carriers.
How We Can Help:
Navigating under the URS can be confusing and it’s hard to determine what you need to register under the system and what you don’t. Our coaches can walk you through the system or take care of any registrations for you, so paperwork doesn’t have to slow you down. Just give us a call to get started.