(a) All records and documents required to be maintained under this subchapter must be preserved in their original form for the periods specified, unless the records and documents are suitably photographed and the microfilm is retained in lieu of the original record for the required retention period.
(b) To be acceptable in lieu of original records, photographic copies of records must meet the following minimum requirements:
(1) Photographic copies shall be no less readily accessible than the original record or document as normally filed or preserved would be and suitable means or facilities shall be available to locate, identify, read, and reproduce such photographic copies.
(2) Any significant characteristic, feature or other attribute of the original record or document, which photography in black and white will not preserve, shall be clearly indicated before the photograph is made.
(3) The reverse side of printed forms need not be copied if nothing has been added to the printed matter common to all such forms, but an identified specimen of each form shall be on the film for reference.
(4) Film used for photographing copies shall be of permanent record-type meeting in all respects the minimum specifications of the National Bureau of Standards, and all processes recommended by the manufacturer shall be observed to protect it from deterioration or accidental destruction.
(5) Each roll of film shall include a microfilm of a certificate or certificates stating that the photographs are direct or facsimile reproductions of the original records. Such certificate(s) shall be executed by a person or persons having personal knowledge of the material covered thereby.
(c) All records and documents required to be maintained under this subchapter may be destroyed after they have been suitably photographed for preservation.
(d) Exception. All records except those requiring a signature may be maintained through the use of computer technology provided the motor carrier can produce, upon demand, a computer printout of the required data.