Believe me I'm not going to move on this quickly! I know I have much to learn. chances are I won't be in it alone. There will, no doubt, be other investors and alot more research done. Such as the information I can derive from others here in this forum. Thanx for ypor input!
tractor- box truck conversion
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You are right and explosives are transported daily across this country. That is why I added the part, "unless you are familiar with the laws".
I am sure that most that read these sites are truck drivers or people interested in the profession. I am also sure that most drivers know that the person preparing transportation paper work and the person loadng the vehicle is rarely the same person.
Mr. Joe blow forklift operator working at a chemical plant should know all the rules pertaining to hazmat. Anyone ever run into a forklift operator and wonder if he purchased his knowledge from a Wal-mart gift card?There is probably not a driver on the road that does not have a horror story about being loaded or unloaded at a dock.
It is the resposibility(unless I am mistaken) of a driver to KNOW that a hazmat load is loaded, and transported, according to law.
Mr. Joe blow loads chemicals on a truck. The driver is not allowed on the dock or does not have sufficient knowledge. Mr. Joe blow loads restricted chemicals together. Can this happen? Who is resposible?
I want to state this and please correct me if you find fault. Most laws matter the most if a person is caught breaking them. A driver can run every day with a log book behind with only the possibility of a ticket if caught.
An accident, with a loss of life, can result in a prison sentence to a driver with a log book behind. How many accidents happen a year involving a truck driver with a loss of life? How many think about this when failing to log up?
Concerning hazmat, it probably will not matter unless two chemicals react causing a fire, an accident with hazmat involved, a hazmat spill, or accident involving a loss of life.
Hauling hazmat means there is more insurance involved. Even if a driver is not at fault in an accident some lawyer will be intent on trying to prove, in any way possible, that the carrier, which involves the owner of the truck and driver, is at fault.
Court records have proven that total fault causing an accident does not have to be proven. A carrier, an owner, or a driver, can be found at fault to an extent.
A lot of companies do not even pay a driver more when hauling hazmat. My boss gets the same rate for a regular load or a chemical hazmat load, but the rate is enough.
All I am saying is that hauling hazmat involves more risk. The owner of a truck, and a driver, needs to make sure the risk is worth it.
The same with companies that ship chemicals . They are required to give employees OSHA training and they will not risk heavy fines and liability due to irresponsible loading .
Lets address logs:
2)- paper logs(not computerized)
3)- paperless logs
Companies, with paper logs, that audit every log of every driver use computerized scan logs. These are uploaded onto a data base for correctness. Some companies, but not all, also upload a computerized fuel sheet. Not one company, that I know of, incorporates Qual-com or it's equivalent to track logs. When logs are loaded into the system they are verified for correctness by the program that may or may not include fuel times.
Most companies and even the DOT(like the IRS)usually use flags as a reason to dig deeper. A mistake, a false entry, or an accident are usual flags.
This means that under normal circunstances a safety department will audit logs randomly. If a drivers logs are pulled for a random check it can be a partial or a complete check.
1)-A random quick scan partial would be checking things like fuel times(non-computerized), a scan for milage verses hours and states(speed), a check for the 13 day compliance, and HOS.
2)-A random standard partial would be checking things like all of the above and taking a page from the Q-com to match a day on a log and comparing them. Also a check on the 13 day compliance.
3)- A random complete would be pulling 7 days of logs and comparing the Q-com, fuel times for each day, and shipping papers. A lot of times a company will pick the 14th day to do any audits. This will also ensure drivers comply with the 13 day rule.
Now you may know why some safety departments, during orientation, will advise to log as it actually happens but make sure the fuel time is within 1/2 an hour. You are hereby put on notice that fuel times will be checked. A driver still calls a log book a funny book for a reason. If a driver knows how to log he(or she) knows what can be gotten away with.
FMCSA(DOT): Checks on company records are performed either during the first year of operation for compliance, during a random, when a complaint is filed, or maybe after a recordable accident, either vehicular are a reportable involving hazmat. It is a drivers responsibility to ensure the correctness of his or her logs. Errors found in DOT audits on logs will generally result in a warning for non serious violations. The company we are leased to was issued 6 warnings with no fines but paid a $50,000 fine for violations of the 13 day rule.
OSHA: covers work place related issues. This is where the line blures. A fork lift operator, loading chemicals correctly onto a truck, even though, two pallets may be loaded incorrectly by FMCSA standards, does not violate OSHA rules.
EPA: covers hazmat not being transported(stored or spilled)
The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials
Safety Administration (PHMSA) cover laws, regulation, and enforcement of hazmat transportation.
FMCSA covers regulation of hazmat being transported by motor carrier . It is the responsibility of the shipper(an agent in the office) and the driver to make sure the load is loaded according to FMCSA regulations. A driver MUST ensure the load is loaded and placarded correctly before leaving. If a roadside inspection reveals an improper load the driver will be in violation. Not the shipper or the forklift opeator. If an individual pallet is missing a hazmat label it is the drivers responsibility to notice and correct this.
Last week a forklift operator loaded a pallet of caustic soda with a pallet of flamable. I told him he had to move it and he said, "my bad".
All of the things listed below that should not happen can and will.
You are right but did use the mord "mainly". Sometimes people read things and do not look at them that close. I would state, and probably wth certainty, that if you read the rules 10 more times you couldn't see problems with the rules, normal things, that are right in front of a person, that few if any, abide by.
I will help you out a little. Read the rules again, the part about fueling, and see if there might be an instant when a problem arises. Remember the fact that almost all fuel islands have two fuel nozzles. I have not, in 15 years of driving, seen anyone fuel one side at a time for a safety reason. A lot of drivers (including someI have seen with hazmat placards) do not even kill the engine when fueling.
This is just one example and I am sure that if you look you might find more.
Subpart AGeneral §397.15 Fueling.
Most drivers, even some hauling hazmat, have never heard of the PHMSA. Most that even know of the organization, think they just handle pipelines. They have authority over all modes of hazmat transportation. Inforcement is by officers other than those we know as DOT. They are Hazardous Materials Enforcement Specialists or Hazardous Materials Compliance Investigators, also known as hazmat investigators or investigators. They can issue tickets that can range from $250 to $50,000.00 for violations($100,000.00 if a death results).
I understand that we all speed when we can and think we won't get caught, run a funny book on a whim, and live life normally. When a driver is behind on his or her log book it is no big deal unless there is an accident involving a death.
Hauling hazmat(RQ) just adds to the complications of life and most companies don't even pay extra or very little extra.
If a driver is going to consider hauling hazmat they should know the rules and be compensated for the work.
Where are you from?
A driver must not have in his possession more than 13 days of log books.
(i) Filing drivers record of duty status. The driver shall submit or forward by mail the original drivers record of duty status to the regular employing motor carrier within 13 days following the completion of the form.
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