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FMCSA Removes Commercial Bus Driver Reporting Requirement

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), an agency in the United States Department of Transportation (USDOT), recently announced the publication of a final rule that will allegedly save $74 million in annual regulatory costs by lessening the burden on commercial buses and other passenger-carrying motor coaches to collect information (U.S. Department of Transportation Provides $74 Million in Annual Cost Savings by Reducing Burdensome Rules on Commercial Buses).

The rule is intended to strengthen the transportation industry without negatively affecting American roadway safety. “This rule will remove outdated and overly burdensome reporting requirements on commercial buses that don’t contribute to improving safety,” said U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine L. Chao. 

USDOT is continuing its efforts to reexamine existing federal regulations and assess their necessity and effectiveness moving forward. FMCSA will no longer require commercial bus drivers to submit driver-vehicle inspection reports (DVIRs) when the driver has not discovered or been notified of vehicle defects or deficiencies.

“This straightforward rule is reflective of the agency and Department’s approach to reducing unneeded regulatory costs while ensuring safety,” said FMCSA Deputy Administrator Jim Mullen. “Eliminating regulatory burdens and saving commercial drivers valuable time is helpful to support the commercial bus industry – especially during our nation’s economic recovery. The bus industry plays a critical role in connecting our nation’s people and communities, and this commonsense rule change will make a difference for commercial bus companies around the country.”

Under current regulations, commercial bus drivers must submit DVIRs even when there are no vehicle defects to report. USDOT estimates the unnecessary task takes approximately 2.4 million hours every year, and the new rule would result in industry cost savings of $74 million annually.

The Trump Administration has made a commitment to easing regulatory burdens on business while claiming safety is not being compromised. However, the transportation industry’s track record of prioritizing profits at the expense of the safety of the American public does not inspire confidence. FMCSA’s final rule can be viewed here.

If you or a loved one have been injured in an accident, please contact Shamberg, Johnson & Bergman for a free consultation. We will only receive a fee in the event of a successful resolution of your case.