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U.S. Department of Transportation U.S. Department of Transportation Icon United States Department of Transportation United States Department of Transportation


    This document updates the operational procedures for certification of Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) employees and non-FMCSA employees. This includes inspectors, investigators, and auditors who are funded through the Motor Carrier Safety Assistance Program (MCSAP), and other non-FMCSA employees who enforce Federal commercial statutes and regulations, and/or upload data into FMCSA information systems. As required by Section 211 of the Motor Carrier Safety Improvement Act (MSCIA) of 1999, certification is required for all motor carrier safety auditors, including private contractors, who conduct safety inspection audits and reviews.

    Download the Policy Documents

    Certification of Vehicle Inspectors, Safety Auditors and Safety Investigators

    • In addition, as required by Section 5202 of the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act of 2015, this policy also adopts the roadside inspectors’ certification standards as developed and maintained by the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) Operational Policy 4 – Inspector Training and Certification. Where CVSA requirements do not exist, this policy establishes initial and maintenance of certification requirements for employees performing inspections, investigations, and safety audits (Attachment A).

    CVSA Operational Policy 4: Inspector Training and Certification, revised April 29, 2021 (as implemented May 2021)

    • This Operational Policy prescribes the standards to which an inspector must be trained to obtain and maintain certification to perform various levels of inspections of commercial motor vehicles and drivers of commercial motor vehicles.

    Attachments A, B, and C

    • FMCSA’s Certification Policy for Employees Who Perform Inspections, Investigations and Safety Audits includes the following:
      • Attachment A: Certification of Safety Inspectors, Safety Investigators, New Entrant Safety Auditors, Commercial Enforcement Specialists[,] Safety Investigators Who Perform Cargo Tank Facility Reviews, and Other Employees Who Maintain Certification (as amended March 2019);
      • Attachment B: Acknowledgement of Initial Certification Completion and Maintenance Requirement; and
      • Attachment C: Employee Certification Status.

    Need more information?

    Use the link below to download a document FMCSA has prepared to address frequently asked questions.

    Last updated: Wednesday, May 25, 2022