October 1, 2013


The DOT New Entrant Safety Audit timeline was shorted from 18 months to 12 months by the FMCSA for interstate motor carriers in July of 2013.  That means all companies with a new motor carrier authority or new MC Number will receive their first DOT Audit within one year of having their authority granted.  With a little planning and effort, your audit can go very smoothly.  I have interviewed several auditors and composed a list eight of the most common areas companies struggle in:

  1. Lack of documentation of a Drug and Alcohol testing program including policies, procedures and educational materials
  2. Lack of a random Drug and Alcohol testing program including name and address of consortium and testing summary from the consortium or lab (MIS Report)
  3. Lack of or incorrect documentation of record of duty status (logbooks and/or timecards)
  4. Missing annual inspections for all trucks, tractors and trailers
  5. Proof of required minimum levels of financial responsibility (MCS-90, MCS-90B and/or certificate of liability)
  6. Proof of commercial driver’s license showing driver’s qualification to operate a commercial vehicle
  7. Missing or incomplete driver’s qualification files
  8. No maintenance plan and/or records documenting services completed for each vehicle

Getting everything you need to be ready for an audit can seem overwhelming.  The key is to work on things a little at a time well in advance of your audit; don’t wait until the last minute.

In my experience with New Entrant Audits, most auditors don’t expect perfection in every category.  They want to see that you are making a good effort to ensure your company is operating safely.  However, the one area that will fail you right away is not having your ducks in a row in regards to Drug and Alcohol Regulations.  It is imperative that you make sure you have everything in that area taken care of.  Good luck with your audit.

If you would like to learn more about the DOT New Entrant Audit, DOT Compliance Review, or Drug and Alcohol Regulations click on one of the links below.

DOT New Entrant Safety Audit

DOT Compliance Review

Drug and Alcohol

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