Receiving a DOT safety rating upgrade is critical to the success and sometimes the very survival of a trucking company. A key area that we are involved with is working with carriers to improve their DOT safety ratings. We have worked with carriers on improving their DOT safety ratings and have a good working relationship with the DOT. Not only do we work on the details of putting together a quality safety management plan, but we also work with our carriers on the safety culture of their company and how they can stay in compliance for years to come.
DOT safety rating upgrade information from the FMCSA regulations is noted below to give you an overview of what is needed.
(a) A motor carrier that has taken action to correct the deficiencies that resulted in a proposed or final rating of “conditional” or “unsatisfactory” may request a rating change at any time.
(b) A motor carrier must make this request in writing to the FMCSA Service Center for the geographic area where the carrier maintains its principal place of business. The addresses and geographical boundaries of the Service Centers are listed in § 390.27 of this chapter.
(c) The motor carrier must base its request upon evidence that it has taken corrective actions and that its operations currently meet the safety standard and factors specified in §§ 385.5 and 385.7. The request must include a written description of corrective actions taken, and other documentation the carrier wishes the FMCSA to consider.
(2) Within 45 days for all other motor carriers.
(f) The filing of a request for change to a proposed or final safety rating under this section does not stay the 45-day period specified in § 385.13(a)(1) for motor carriers transporting passengers or hazardous materials in quantities requiring placarding.
(g) FMCSA may allow a motor carrier (except a motor carrier transporting passengers or a motor carrier transporting hazardous materials in quantities requiring placarding) with a proposed rating of “unsatisfactory” to continue its motor carrier operations in commerce for up to 60 days beyond the 60 days specified in the proposed rating, if FMCSA determines that the motor carrier is making a good faith effort to improve its safety status. This additional period would begin on the 61st dayafter the date of the notice of proposed “unsatisfactory” rating.
(h) If the FMCSA determines that the motor carrier has taken the corrective actions required and that its operations currently meet the safety standard and factors specified in §§ 385.5 and 385.7, the agency will notify the motor carrier in writing of its upgraded safety rating.
(i) If the FMCSA determines that the motor carrier has not taken all the corrective actions required, or that its operations still fail to meet the safety standard and factors specified in §§ 385.5 and 385.7, the agency will notify the motor carrier in writing.
(j) Any motor carrier whose request for change is denied in accordance with paragraph (i) of this section may request administrative review under the procedures of § 385.15. The motor carriermust make the request within 90 days of the denial of the request for a rating change. If the proposed rating has become final, it shall remain in effect during the period of any administrative review.