The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration recently issued guidance on the definition of “accident” regarding commercial motor vehicle fires. Fires have been included in the definition of accidents since 1962; however, when simplifying regulatory text, specific references to fires were removed.
The guidance clarifies that a fire or explosion in a CMV operating on a highway in interstate or intrastate commerce would be considered an “accident” if it resulted in a fatality, bodily injuries requiring immediate medical attention away from the scene, or disabling damage requiring a vehicle to be towed. The guidance applies to both collision and noncollision incidents.
Any CMV fire that meets this definition is a recordable accident that must be recorded on an accident register, and will be considered in the safety fitness determination.