Your DOT Safety Audit Guide

    When it comes to your DOT safety audit, it is important to be prepared.  The best way to pass a DOT audit is to be certain that you are in compliance in the first place. To assist you in this matter, below is a DOT safety audit guide detailing some of the main points to prepare for.

    Drug and alcohol testing

    You should have regular drug and alcohol testing as part of employment.  To pass your DOT safety audit, you need a drug and alcohol testing program that meets the requirements, including having a set policy and a way to report testing results.  Supervisors should also complete reasonable-suspicion training to teach them how to recognize the signs of drivers that are under the influence.

    Driver qualifications

    As part of your DOT safety audit preparation, you will need to have certain files set up and maintained.  A DOT audit will look at both your Driver Qualification File and your Safety Performance File.  The Driver Qualification File should contain information such when a driver’s license will expire and driving records.  The Safety Performance File includes forms that look a driver’s driving history.

    Hours of Service

    Another thing that a DOT safety audit will look at is whether or not your drivers are meeting the hours of service requirements and are keeping their log books complete and accurate.  Before you have a DOT audit you will want to make sure that drivers are filling out their logs completely and not going over the maximum hours behind the wheel.

    Vehicle maintenance

    Part of your DOT safety audit will be verifying that your vehicles are in good repair, and that they have regular inspection, repair, and maintenance rules.  You will want to make sure that drivers are doing all inspections properly and maintaining records of these inspections.  This includes inspections that drivers do themselves, as well as annual inspections, emergency equipment, vehicle maintenance logs, and the qualifications of inspectors.

    Financial responsibility

    Your DOT audit will also look to see that you have the minimum level of financial responsibility required.  All drivers are required to carry insurance, and business owners will also need to verify that they are properly insured before having a DOT safety audit.

    Are you compliant?

    There are many ways to make sure that you are compliant with DOT safety regulations before you have a DOT safety audit.  There are several companies that offer DOT safety audit assistance and will go over your records to make sure that you are in compliance.  In addition, you can order the FMCSA Safety Regulation Books to make sure that you are up to date on all of the current FMCSA requirements.

    Keep in mind that every employee should be aware of his or her part in staying compliant with DOT safety audit regulations.  The best way to survive an audit is to make sure that you are staying compliant the first time, every time.



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    { 2 comments… read them below or add one }

    Thomas Ervin January 13, 2010 at 6:22 pm

    A few of us truckers came up with a safety logo decal. We would like for the truking companies to get these decals for their trailer, or mud flaps, or just get the poster. Its called “Can’t Stop On A Dime”. Many small cars think the tractor-trailer can stop like them. But Us truckers know that isn’t true. So we hope we can get every trucking company in the US, to look at the logo and help educate the driving world. You never know. It could be YOUR family members life you might save.

    Thank you
    Truckers Life(Thomas Ervin)

    Reply

    Tim January 23, 2013 at 6:46 pm

    I agree with you on this one Thomas and also , we are also 72 ft long ( 4 car lengths long ) , so as they zig zag in and out between us and then suddenly stop ,it takes at least 4 to 6 car lengths of lane for us to divert ourselves from colliding with them !!! The government is trying to make us be compliant with regulations , but also EVERYONE needs to be compliant ! A truck driver knows how to drive a Truck and pull a trailer , and also drive a car ,boat forklift or what ever it may be , and we can be safe doing so , but we share the road with cars that are opperated by old people and very young kids ,and they may be on medication or I pods or both . So how can we avoid a crash when we are the only ones that are driving ??? kind of like an obstical course of land mines !!

    Reply

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