Dot appeared in the United States of America in 1966. The creation of such a structure was dictated by the need to provide a modern transport system that would meet safety requirements. Now, every truck subject to the law must have an eight-digit number on its side, which follows the abbreviation US DOT. It is assigned by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA).
What gives the carrier a DOT number
First of all, the carrier must understand that the transportation of goods without a number violates the Federal Law. And this is fraught with penalties. For violation of the rules for the transportation of goods, the carrier may face:
- fines from several hundred to several thousand dollars;
- the driver of the vehicle may be fined or arrested;
- the vehicle may be towed or confiscated.
Further verification of the activities of an illegal company can lead to even more disastrous consequences up to the complete closure of the business.
Registration gives the carrier advantages:
- An identification number protects your vehicle. It shows that it belongs only to you.
- The DOT number confirms your professional skills, increases the level of customers’ confidence to your busyness.
Thus, it helps to increase your ranking and the number of customers.
Is it possible to have two DOT numbers
We note at once that the dot number is not given to the driver and not to the head of the transport company. It is assigned to each vehicle. The presence of several identification numbers expands the capabilities of the carrier.
For example, the company has vehicles for the transportation of not only ordinary, but also dangerous goods. The carrier can obtain identification numbers for both vehicles and transport the authorized goods to the states where this law applies.
What you can do after receiving a DOT number
An identification number opens a green road for you to transport certain categories of cargo or passengers within most states. But even if in some states these rules do not apply, you should still have a number. Its absence severely restricts your movement around the country. The DOT number gives you the following options:
- transport goods on trucks weighing more than 10,000 pounds;
- drive a car with passengers in the amount of 9 to 15 people who pay the fare;
- transportation of 16 or more people for compensation;
- transport the permissible rate of dangerous goods.
With a DOT number, you can safely transport commercial cargo across state borders.
Registration of a vehicle implies the implementation of certain obligations. In order to ensure your safety, the security of goods and to improve the overall level of safety on the roads, the DOT conducts regular inspections of vehicles. These procedures are a bit stressful, but the carrier must understand that all this is done for the common good. To successfully pass the DOT test, you need to:
- make sure that the turn signals, brake lights and clearance light work;
- check the condition of all tires;
- make sure that the brakes are always in good condition.
That’s not all, of course, but every driver knows what else needs to be done to make the car drive safely.
Carriers should keep in mind that the DOT number is not assigned forever. Every two years it needs to be updated. In addition, the carrier must be aware that he is obliged to notify the security organization of all changes occurring in the company. If changes are detected that the carrier did not report, the DOT number can be deactivated, and the company fined a large amount.
If the company doesn’t update its DOT numbers in time, it will have to pay a thousand dollars in fines every day. Although the amount of the fine will not exceed $ 10,000, this is also not a small amount.