Federal trucking regulations are a set of rules and laws written and carried out by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) to increase the safety of big trucks on the road. At the end of July, the U.S. Department of Transportation announced that all fines for violations of these regulations increased.
Why Did Fines Increase?
The Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act requires the FMCSA to adjust fine amounts every year based on inflation.
To do this, the previous fines are multiplied by the percentage change between the October 2017 and October 2018 Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U). It came out to 1.02522, meaning all fines from last year will increase by multiplying the fine amounts by this number.
Here a few examples of violations that changed as a result of this increase and the new fine amount:
Alcohol prohibition violations (first offense): $3,174
Alcohol prohibition violations (second or subsequent offense): $6,348
Violations of Hazardous Materials Regulations and Safety Permitting Regulations (transportation or shipment of hazmat): $81,993
Operating after being declared unfit by assignment of a final “unsatisfactory” safety rating - hazardous materials: $191,316
Loading, unloading violations: $16,453
You can view the full list of new penalties for trucking regulations violations here.
The Bottom Line
Truck drivers and trucking companies may not be huge fans of these fine increases. However, the bottom line is that trucking regulations are in place for a reason: to ensure the safety of everyone on the road, including the trucker, workers, and other motorists.
Truck drivers and trucking companies that adhere to these regulations eliminate the chance of large fines, but more importantly, reduce the risk of large and devastating trucking accidents.
If you or a loved one is involved in a trucking accident, you need seasoned and effective legal representation immediately. Contact Fowler | Helsel | Vogt at (559) 900-1280 to discuss your options with one of our Fresno trucking accident attorneys.