Iowa Trucking Laws

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (Title 49, Parts 350-399) govern all vehicles engaged in interstate traffic.

There are some situations where a tractor-trailer or other commercial motor vehicle is involved in only intrastate travel. For example, an appliance store in Lost Nation may own a truck that only makes in-state deliveries.

The Iowa Department of Public Safety has adopted Title 49, Parts 382-384 and 390-399 of the federal regulations.

The following provisions are an overview of Iowa laws that affect trucks operating only in Iowa:

Driver Qualification

Iowa has adopted Part 391 of the Federal Regulations with some exceptions. Drivers of commercial vehicles in Iowa must only be 18 years old unless they are transporting hazardous materials, in which case, they must be 21. Federal law mandates that drivers be a minimum of 21 years of age.

Drivers must meet the Federal vision requirements (Sec. 391.41(b)(10)), unless exempted by state law.

Driving of Motor Vehicles

In Iowa, when involved in an accident a driver must stop and give aid to anyone injured. Failure to do so could result in a fine or jail. A police officer must be contacted immediately.

Drivers cannot carry a concealed firearm unless the weapons are unloaded and either in the trunk of the vehicle or in a closed container which is too large to be effectively concealed.

Inspection and Maintenance

Iowa has adopted Part 396 of the Federal Regulations. Special plated farm vehicles (intrastate) are exempt from the annual inspection requirement.

Crash reports are available from:

Records Section
Office of Driver Services
Department of Transportation
Park Fair Mall
100 Euclid
P.O. Box 9204
Des Moines, Iowa 50306

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