Research Project

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Research and Recommendations for Improving FMCSA’s HM Cargo Tank Monitoring and Enforcement Program


To develop recommendations for how the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) can better meet hazardous materials (HM) cargo tank regulatory oversight and enforcement requirements.


FMCSA has identified a number of research questions related to HM cargo tank regulatory oversight and enforcement.


This research is to develop recommendations for how FMCSA can better meet HM cargo tank regulatory oversight and enforcement requirements. Research questions include, but are not limited to:
  • What operational capabilities need to be developed to enable a more efficient application of available FMCSA personnel, including the very scarce HM personnel? These include data reporting requirements, database structures, and analysis algorithms.
  • What qualifications or standards are needed for enforcement personnel involved?
  • What data and algorithms are needed to be able to best determine poorly performing entities within the industry?
  • What changes in regulations and policies are needed?
  • Recommend which of these initiatives FMCSA appears to have the authority to issue and why, and which ones require a PHMSA rulemaking to authorize FMCSA.


Detailed recommendations for how FMCSA and PHMSA could better address the HM cargo tank program needs.


October 2016: Kick-off meeting.
Fall 2016: Final detailed work plan.
October 2016: Attend National Tank Truck Association Tank Week Conference.
January 2017: Attend CVSA Cooperative Hazardous Materials Enforcement Development (COHMED) Conference.


FY 2016: $550,000

Current Status:

Active—Project awarded.

Project Manager:

For more information, contact David Goettee of the Research Division at (202) 366-4097 or


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Updated: Thursday, January 5, 2017
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