New FMCSA Proposal on Electronic Identification System Stands to Change On-road Inspections

As the transport industry has been expanding, FMCSA and DoT are experiencing a shortage of eligible and trained inspectors. FMCSA has proposed that every interstate-operating commercial vehicle be fitted with an electronic identification system to tackle the disparity. According to the Federal Register notice dated 21st September 2022, the identification technology will have wireless capabilities to communicate with a Unique ID number, when any Federal or State motor carrier safety enforcement personnel enquires about it.

Here in this article, the Yourbestfleet team will discuss the new FMCSA proposal on electronic identification system.

The Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRM) is FMCSA’s response to the petition filed by the CSVA (Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance) in 2010 and 2015. The CSVA argues that an electronic identification system “would revolutionize the way commercial motor vehicle roadside monitoring, inspection, and enforcement are conducted. It would improve the effectiveness of enforcement programs while reducing costs, for both enforcement and industry, all while improving safety.”

The FMCSA recognizes that their existing USDoT number readers might not be accurate. The notice mentioned, “These issues may result in compliant carriers being stopped for roadside inspections and, conversely, non-compliant or high-risk carriers being excluded from roadside inspections.” The existing number and license plate readers can identify registration details of vehicles at highway speed. 

“Unnecessary inspections on otherwise compliant carriers leave less time for enforcement personnel to identify and conduct inspections of higher-risk carriers, and they also diminish the value of the advance e-screening for compliant carriers. Lack of inspections on non-compliant higher risk carriers may result in adverse safety events.”

Currently, the proposal is open for public comment till 22nd November 2022. Interested parties like drivers, operators, fleet management service vendors, ELD manufacturers, and others can comment and give recommendations. Some of the questions posed by FMCSA are:

  • Inclusion of data for the ID: carrier name, carrier contact information, vehicle ID number, license plate number, USDOT number, and gross vehicle weight rating
  • Invasion of privacy and cyber security
  • Use of ELD to collect and transmit data to the official
  • Cost and benefit of electronic identification system to all parties involved

In a nutshell, FMCSA aims to specify prerequisites that help safety officials identify a moving vehicle’s motor carrier record wirelessly, efficiently, and accurately, thereby saving time. For more information, read this. 

Meanwhile, you can always rely on your Matrack ELD and FMS to help you avoid violations, sail through inspections, and keep your fleet running. Keep checking this space for more updates. 

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