Having a transportation company means delivering people or goods for their expected destinations efficiently and safely. It also means that your company must operate within a legal framework put in place by law-enforcing organizations, including the Department of Transportation (DOT). Trucking firms must ensure that they observe all aspects of DOT regulations alongside the federal rules. There is no profession without rules and restrictions aimed at keeping both the employers and employees safe and sound. If your truck drivers are not DOT compliant, it can lead to severe penalties and fines; hence it is essential to ensure that they stay compliant. The following are tips to ensure your truck drivers are DOT compliant:
To avoid issues with DOT, ensure that your truck drivers perform a daily inspection. In case, some items are found deficient during the DOT inspection, and your safety rating could be in jeopardy. As the manager of the firm, you are responsible for inspecting your trucks to ensure that everything is intact. You cannot know whether your trucks have fault issues unless you carry out daily inspection. Ensure that you run through the checklist to ensure that every checkpoint is crossed off. For instance, you can inspect the following, oil pressure, air pressure, mirrors, steering wheel, and fire extinguisher.
Inform Them about the Regulations of Your State
Each state has its specific qualifications and regulations regarding compliance; therefore, it is essential to check the DOT driving regulations of the states that your firm operates in. You must ensure that all your truck drivers are aware of the regulations and encourage them to adhere.
Additionally, it would help if you inform your truck drivers about the ins and outs of the DOT rulebook. You can also encourage them to find the DOT rulebook from the FAQ section of the FMCSA website. The page offers the insight of frequently asked questions that will allow your truck drivers to be informed about the DOT rules and restrictions.
Inform Your Drivers on the Authority They Need
Depending on the state that your firm operates in, you require various levels of authority. You should ensure that your truck drivers apply for and receive their federal DOT numbers and authority. By acquiring the Federal DOT, it is easy to truck the safety record of your company alongside its compliance. You should also encourage them to contact the Motor Carrier Authority, which identifies the type of trucking business your firm operates and details, including the materials your drivers are allowed to haul.
To acquire these numbers, your truck drivers must complete the Safety Certification Application and Motor Carrier Identification Report. The drivers will receive both numbers after the application is filed. However, the applications will have to be reviewed by FMCSA.
Keep in Shape
Not all DOT driving restrictions deal with the driving itself. Other regulations aim at ensuring that your truck drivers are in a good position to operate trucks safely. It would be best if you give your truck drivers strategies on how to pass the physical exam. Ensure that they are in good health and shape.
Some of your truck drivers get frustrated by the hours of service regulations. To avoid this, ensure that you consider team driving as it will share the driving; hence your truck stays out longer and remains DOT compliant.
As a manager, you must ensure that your truck drivers are clean for them to pass the physical exam that involves alcohol and drug testing. These tests are random and regular; hence you must ensure that your truck drivers remain alcohol-free while driving. This is not only important to the adherence of the law but also vital for safety. As such, it is fundamental for your truck drivers to stay clean always and get them out of addiction before they renew their CDL. By encouraging your truck drivers to stay clean, they maintain the reputation of the company.