Proposals near on intermodal equipment, new entrants

The White House Office of Management and Budget has signed off on proposed regulations that would establish requirements related to the maintenance of intermodal equipment providers, and raise the standard of compliance for passing a new entrant safety audit. The action allows the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration to issue the two notices of proposed rulemaking in the near future.

The rulemaking on intermodal equipment will reflect statutory changes Congress enacted last year in the major highway reauthorization bill. It would require entities that offer intermodal container chassis for transportation in interstate commerce to:

  • File a Motor Carrier Identification Report (Form MCS-150);
  • Display a USDOT identification number on each chassis offered for such transportation;
  • Establish a systematic inspection, repair and maintenance program to ensure the safe operating condition of each chassis offered for transportation and maintain documentation of the program; and
  • Provide a means for effectively responding to driver and motor carrier complaints about the condition of intermodal container chassis.
  • FMCSA is pursuing the new entrant rulemaking on its own initiative based on its experience with the current program, which is now several years old. In addition to tighter standards and clarification of existing rules, FMCSA will propose a separate application procedure and safety oversight system for non-North America-domiciled motor carriers.

    The goal of the new entrant regulations is to improve FMCSA’s ability to identify at-risk new entrant carriers and ensure deficiencies in basic safety management controls are corrected before the new entrant is granted permanent registration. All new entrants would continue to receive educational information on how to comply with the safety regulations and be given an opportunity to correct any deficiencies found. For more information on this rulemaking, visit and search Docket No. 11061.

    OMB still has two FMCSA proposals under consideration: Use of electronic onboard recorders for hours-of-service compliance and regulation of household goods brokers. In addition, OMB cleared a final rule regarding supporting documents for drivers logs in September. FMCSA has delayed publishing the rule, however, saying that it needs time to train field personnel to ensure clarity and uniform enforcement nationwide.