Change to Driver-Vehicle Inspection Reports Announced
On December 9, 2014, the US Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration announced it has rescinded a requirement for inter-jurisdictional truck drivers to submit Driver-Vehicle Inspection Reports at the end of each tour of duty when no vehicle defects or deficiencies are found. This change does NOT apply to motor coach drivers, who must still file a “no-defect” DVIR.
The requirement to carry out pre- and post-trip inspections is not in any way affected by this change, which was approved solely to reduce an administrative burden for drivers, who are still responsible, along with carriers, for ensuring that their equipment is safe and in proper operating condition.
Regarding its decision to still require no-defect DVIRs from motor coach drivers, FMCSA made the following points:
A passenger-carrier crash is a low-probability but high-consequence event, in terms of potential deaths and injuries.
Motor coach drivers often need to interact with their passengers, particularly at the beginning and end of their work day, but often during the trip as well. These interactions are a critical part of a motor coach driver's responsibilities and may result in the driver overlooking or failing to recall certain mechanical conditions unless the report is required every work day…also, because motor coach drivers must be alert to the varying needs of their passengers, they may not be able to focus as closely as truck drivers on changes in their vehicle's operating condition encountered during a trip.
Because they are carrying the most valuable cargo, motor carriers of passengers must exercise heightened diligence over their operations, including vehicle maintenance.
For more information on this change, please see DVIR Final Rule Reduces Reporting Requirements by the BC Trucking Association (December 11, 2014).
Tia Chisholm, HUB International TRANSPORTATION
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