U.S. Department of Transportation
Office of Public Affairs
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, September 27, 2002
Contact: Suzy Bohnert
FMCSA Requires Truckers to Meet New Set
Of Standards for Inspecting, Tying Down Cargo
The U.S. Department of Transportation's Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) today announced a requirement that all interstate commercial motor vehicles (CMV) comply with a new single set of performance standards. Meeting these standards will help to ensure that all CMV loads are properly secured and to reduce the number of accidents caused by cargo shifting or falling from trucks.
This final rule sets new cargo securement standards based on the North American Cargo Securement Standard Model Regulations. It reflects the results of a multi-year, comprehensive research program to evaluate current U.S. and Canadian cargo securement regulations; the motor carrier industry's best practices; and recommendations presented during a series of public meetings involving U.S. and Canadian industry experts, federal, state and provincial enforcement officials, and other interested parties.
Canada and Mexico also are considering adopting provisions of the North American model regulations. This would enable the three neighboring countries to have compatible cargo securement regulations for heavy trucks.
The final rule clarifies how to determine the working load limit of cargo securement systems and the way carriers should use these tiedown devices to secure cargo so it does not leak, spill, blow, or fall from a CMV.
The rule establishes new performance standards that apply to cargo securement systems used in transporting general freight and loads that require specialized or unique methods. It also establishes commodity-specific securement standards for the transportation of logs, dressed lumber, metal coils, paper rolls, intermodal containers; cars, light trucks and vans; heavy vehicles, equipment and machinery; flattened or crushed cars; roll-on/roll-off containers; and large boulders. In the process of developing these standards, participants in the public meetings identified these commodities as being the most difficult to secure.
The final rule is effective Dec. 26, 2002 and can be viewed by searching for docket number FMCSA-97-2289 at http://dms.dot.gov/. It gives motor carriers until Jan. 1, 2004, to comply with the new requirements. Training materials for motor carriers and enforcement officials are being developed and will be available from the FMCSA before the compliance deadline for the final rule.
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