FMCSA has a number of ways to intervene with carriers that demonstrate unsafe behavior and noncompliance with regulations. FMCSA (and State) investigators are equipped to systematically evaluate why safety problems are occurring; recommend corrective action; and when appropriate, assess penalties.
Interventions provide carriers with the information necessary to understand their safety problems and to change unsafe behavior. Depending on the type and severity of the violation, FMCSA may use any of these interventions with a carrier at any time. If the motor carrier implements corrective action recommended by FMCSA, the penalty amount may be reduced.
|Warning Letter ||A letter sent to a carrier’s place of business that identifies potential safety performance and compliance issues based on SMS data. A warning letter is an opportunity for a carrier to improve its safety performance and compliance without further intervention from FMCSA. |
|Targeted Roadside Inspection ||Inspectors may use the data in SMS to identify vehicles for inspection. |
|Offsite Investigation ||A non-ratable investigation conducted remotely, rather than at the carrier’s place of business. An offsite investigation will not result in a safety rating, but penalties may be assessed for any violations found. An Offsite Investigation may be converted to an Onsite Focused or Comprehensive Investigation. |
|Onsite Focused Investigation ||An investigation conducted at the carrier’s place of business that targets specific areas of regulatory compliance. A focused investigation will not result in Satisfactory safety rating because not all regulatory parts are examined. A focused investigation may be unrated, or may result in a Conditional or Unsatisfactory safety rating. Penalties may be assessed for any violations found. |
|Onsite Comprehensive Investigation ||An investigation conducted at the carrier’s place of business that examines all areas of regulatory compliance under 49 CFR 385, Appendix B. A comprehensive investigation may result in a Satisfactory, Conditional, or Unsatisfactory safety rating. Penalties may be assessed for any violations found. |
|Notice of Violation (NOV) ||A document alleging that a carrier has safety violations for which corrective action is recommended. If the violations are not addressed, formal enforcement action may be taken. |
|Notice of Claim (NOC) ||The initial document issued by FMCSA to assert a civil penalty for alleged safety violations. |
|Unfit/Operations Out-of-Service Order (OOSO) ||If a proposed Unsatisfactory safety rating becomes final, FMCSA will issue an order placing out-of-service the carrier’s operations in interstate and intrastate commerce. |