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Welcome, New Entrant.
This guidebook has been developed to help carriers prepare for an FMCSA Safety Audit by identifying some of the documents auditors may request to verify compliance with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSRs) and Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMRs). This page summarizes the areas that will be reviewed; subsequent pages provide more detailed information on each of the regulations and example documentation.
This guidebook is not intended as a replacement for the published FMCSRs or HMRs. Auditors may request additional documents to ensure that the carrier has sufficient safety management practices in place. Regulations issued by the U.S. Department of Transportation and its Operating Administrations are published in the Federal Register and compiled in the U.S. Code of Federal Regulations (CFR).
View the Motor Carrier Safety Planner for more detailed information on Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSRs).
Driver-Related Documents

  1. Drivers List All carriers must provide a list of currently employed drivers. This list is used to assess applicability of various regulations.

  2. Driver's License As part of a driver's Driver Qualification file, a copy of the driver's proper licensing must be kept.

  3. Driver's Records of Duty (RODs) and Supporting Documentation Records of each driver's status must be maintained for 6 months by the carrier.

  4. Driver's Motor Vehicle Record As part of a driver's Driver Qualification file, a motor vehicle record must be kept for all drivers.

  5. Medical Certificate All carriers must ensure drivers are medically qualified to operate a CMV.
Vehicle-Related Documents

  1. Vehicle List All carriers must provide a list of vehicles and trailers. This list is used to assess applicability of various regulations. The list must include unit number, vehicle identification number (VIN), plate number, and State.

  2. Vehicle Inspection Equipment must be kept in good working condition.

  3. Hazardous Materials (HM) Shipping Papers Carriers that haul hazardous materials must maintain Shipping Papers for each type of HM transported.
Carrier/Programmatic-Related Documents

  1. Proof of Insurance All carriers must have insurance or surety bonds sufficient to satisfy the minimum public liability requirement.

  2. Drug & Alcohol Program Motor carriers operating vehicles requiring a Commercial Driver's License (CDL) must test drivers for illegal substances and alcohol level periodically.

  3. Accident Register All carriers involved in an FMCSA-reportable crash in the past 3 years must retain an Accident Register.
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Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration
1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590 • 1-800-832-5660 • TTY: 1-800-877-8339 • Field Office Contacts