Are Trucking Companies Regulated by the Federal Government?

By September 8, 2014Trucking

Trucking companies throughout the United States are subject to strict regulations in order to ensure that they do not endanger the public as a result of negligent behavior or careless operation. Trucking companies are regulated by both state and local governments as well as by the federal government of the United States of America.

Trucking Companies and Federal Regulations

Trucking companies are required to comply with all federal regulations. The regulations that affect the trucking industry are generally set by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), which regulates not just commercial trucks but also other commercial vehicles that transport passengers, such as tour buses. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has set a number of different rules and regulations for trucking companies that must be followed. These regulations include:

  • Limits on the number of hours that a driver can operate his truck for without a rest break. These are called hours-of-service limits and they apply to both long and short haul truck drivers.
  • Rules regarding licensing and training for truck drivers of commercial motor vehicles.
  • Requirements related to vehicle maintenance and inspection in order to ensure that all vehicles are regularly maintained and that there are no dangerous problems with the brakes or other truck components that could result in an accident occurring.
  • Regulations on the operation of commercial trucking companies including rules on when penalties can be imposed on companies who fail to follow safety rules and regulations.

These are just a sampling of the many different rules that the federal government has set for the trucking industry. When individual states set their own rules and requirements for commercial trucking companies, they may impose stricter requirements on companies operating within their states but they may not pass laws or rules that contradict those that have been set on the federal level. If the federal law imposes a requirement on a trucking company, that requirement must be followed.

The Importance of Federal Trucking Regulations

The federal regulations on trucking companies establish uniform rules that apply throughout the whole of the United States, which is very important as many trucks transport goods across state lines. The rules apply everywhere and are enforced to ensure that the truckers and the public are safe. If you or a loved one has been involved in a truck accident and federal rules of safety were broken, this breach of the federal rules can be considered clear evidence that the trucker and/or trucking company was negligent and is thus liable for losses caused by the negligence. An experienced truck accident lawyer can help you to determine if any federal laws were broken by the trucker or trucking company that caused your wreck to occur.