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United States Department of Transportation United States Department of Transportation

New Rule for Marking Large Trucks To Ease Identification, Improve Safety

Tuesday, June 13, 2000

June 13, 2000

The U.S. Department of Transportation's Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has revised requirements for marking commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) with FMCSA-issued USDOT identification numbers. The revision will enhance highway and motor carrier safety by providing a more consistent vehicle identification method for enforcement officials and the public.

The new rule requires carriers operating in interstate commerce to display their name and USDOT number on both sides of the power unit.

Effective July 3, 2000, all new interstate motor carriers must submit a Form MCS-150 to the FMCSA before beginning operations. They also must mark the power units of their commercial motor vehicles before putting them into service. Earlier requirements called for submission of the form within 90 days after starting operations.

The FMCSA has required the use of USDOT numbers since 1988, and before that, ICC (Interstate Commerce Commission) numbers were required on vehicles operated by for-hire carriers. FMCSA had previously allowed motor carriers authorized by the former ICC to continue to mark their trucks and buses with the ICC number. If a carrier displayed the ICC number as of July 3, 2000, the motor carrier will have until July 3, 2002 to display its USDOT number. All commercial motor vehicles added to a motor carrier's fleet on or after July 3, 2000 must meet the new marking requirements before being placed in service.

The rule requires commercial motor vehicles to be marked with the legal name or a single trade name of the business that owns or controls the motor carrier operation, and the name must appear as indicated on the motor carrier's Motor Carrier Identification Report (Form MCS-150). Carriers have until July 5, 2005 to display that name on trucks and buses in their fleets. Carriers may verify information on file with the FMCSA by going to on the Internet and accessing the information via their USDOT number, MC number or name.

Provisions concerning use of removable marking devices, such as magnetic name tags, are retained in the new regulation.

Information and the form used to apply for USDOT numbers can be obtained by calling 1-800-832-5660. The MCS-150 form also can be downloaded from the Internet at The new regulation was in the June 2, 2000 Federal Register.

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