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  • § 387.1
    Purpose and scope.
  • § 387.3
    Applicability.
  • § 387.5
    Definitions.
  • § 387.7
    Financial responsibility required.
  • § 387.9
    Financial responsibility, minimum levels.
  • § 387.11
    State authority and designation of agent.
  • § 387.15
    Forms.
  • § 387.25
    Purpose and scope.
  • § 387.27
    Applicability.
  • § 387.31
    Financial responsibility required.
  • § 387.39
    Forms.

Part 387

Section § 387.9: Financial responsibility, minimum levels.

Below are the available interpretations for the given section. To return to the list of parts, use the Parts link above. The menu to the left provides a full list of sections that have interpretations. To view interpretations for a different section, click on the menu item.

The regulations text of the section can be found on the eCFR website. To view the regulations text, use the link below. For assistance, please send an email to FMCSA.Webmaster@dot.gov.
View regulations for Part 387

Question 1: Is gasoline listed as a hazardous material, and, if so, what is the minimum level of financial responsibility currently required?

Guidance: Gasoline is a listed hazardous material in the table found at 49 CFR 172.101. §387.9 requires for-hire and private motor carriers transporting any quantity of oil in interstate or foreign commerce to have a minimum $1,000,000 of financial responsibility coverage. The Clean Water Act of 1973, as amended, declares that gasoline is an "oil," not a "hazardous substance." The $1,000,000 coverage also applies to for-hire and private mo tor carriers transporting gasoline "in-bulk" in intrastate commerce.

Question 2: Is a motor carrier transporting liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) in any quantity required to have $1,000,000 or $5,000,000 of financial responsibility coverage?

Guidance: Liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) is a flammable compressed gas. All transportation of LPG in containment systems with capacities in excess of 3,500 water gallons requires $5 million financial responsibility coverage. Interstate and foreign commerce movements of LPG in containment systems not in excess of 3,500 water gallons requires $1 million coverage. Intrastate movements of LPG in those smaller containment systems are subject only to state financial responsibility requirements.

Question 3: What is the definition of a "hopper type" vehicle as indicated in §387.9?

Guidance: A "hopper type" vehicle is one which is capable of discharging its load through a bottom opening without tilting. This vehicle type would also include belly dump trailers. Rear dump trailers and roll-off containers do not meet the definition of a bottom discharging vehicle.

Question 4: What level of insurance is required for a carrier operating a multi-compartment cargo tank that is transporting a hazardous substance, where each compartment is less than 3,500 water gallon capacity, and the total capacity is greater than 3,500 water gallons capacity?

Guidance: $5,000,000 of insurance is required. The table in §387.9 requires that amount of coverage for hazardous substances transported in “cargo tanks, portable tanks, or hopper-type vehicles with capacities in excess of 3,500 water gallons.” The transporting vehicle must have “a gross vehicle weight rating of 10,000 or more pounds.” Section 171.8 of title 49, C.F.R., defines a “cargo tank motor vehicle” as a motor vehicle with one or more cargo tanks permanently attached to or forming an integral part of the motor vehicle. Additionally, the use of the plural to describe the tanks and the singular to describe the truck implies that the standard is met if several tanks with a combined capacity of 3,500 water gallons are transported on the same vehicle. This is consistent with the purpose of the financial responsibility requirement — in this case, to protect the public from financial loss following an accidental release of hazardous material—because all of the compartments in a single tank trailer could be damaged in one crash. Here, the compartments on the vehicle have a total capacity of greater than 3,500 water gallons, therefore $5,000,000 of insurance is required.

Question 5: What level of insurance is required for a motor carrier operating a tube trailer where the cylinders are manifolded together. Each separate cylinder has a capacity less than 3,500 water gallons, but the total capacity of all the cylinders on the vehicle is in excess of 3,500 water gallons.

Guidance: $5,000,000 of insurance is required, for the reasons given above. The table in §387.9 refers to “in bulk Division 2.1 or 2.2 materials.” The definition of in bulk in §387.5 includes “the transportation, as cargo, of property … in containment systems with capacities in excess of 3,500 water gallons.” In this case, a group of cylinders manifolded together qualify as “containment systems.” As in Guidance A, the table describes the vehicle in the singular. As long as the containment systems transported on a single vehicle have a total capacity of at least 3,500 water gallons, $5,000,000 of insurance is required.


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