The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration recently toughened its stance on carriers who know their way around the rules, as well as on those with deep enough pockets that paying fines for repeated offenses isn’t enough to make them change their ways.
TruckingInfo.com reported last week on the new rule from FMCSA that takes aim at carriers that have been sanctioned, only to reincarnate under a new identity. Under the new rule, the agency will review out-of-service orders before allowing reincarnated companies that have a checkered past. Records for new companies will be consolidated with those of a company’s predecessor.
The FMCSA rule, which will impact carriers, intermodal equipment providers and brokers, also will change the treatment given to wealthy carriers who can afford to pay fines for repeat offenses without having to correct the practice being flagged.
Lastly, the new rule impacts how the industry views companies that reach a settlement in a civil case. According to FMCSA, a trucking company that agrees to pay a full civil penalty in an enforcement proceeding is not absolved of an admission of liability.
All of these points touch on a case we recently argued and won in an Oregon federal court. The case involved a broker’s negligent hiring of a carrier whose owners had a less-than-stellar business past. Click here to read more about that case.