Out-Of-Service Guide: Why You Need It


Someone in another forum stated:

“Law enforcement makes up reasons all the time to take drivers out of service or use as a reason to start an inspection!”

Regarding this person’s remark, I pointed out the following:

I believe there might be some validity to the 2nd half but not the 1st part.

If a trooper believes he sees the driver operating a CMV in a careless fashion, or exceeding the speed limit, or a missing or inoperative license plate light, that gives him cause to pull the truck over.

Sometimes this leads to misunderstandings or feelings of persecution, and this is one of the areas where people come to feel law enforcement officers “make it up as they go.”

But, there is NO grey area at all about placing a driver or a CMV out of service.

Any time your vehicle or driver is placed out of service, this is a SERIOUS, NEGATIVE safety-related event, and should lead you to do some analysis about why a CMV was shut down while under dispatch. One of the first places you should look is in the CVSA Out of Service Guide. (Available from the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance). If it is NOT in the current CVSA OOS Guide it is NOT an OOS violation and you only need to approach the FMCSA using DataQs to make the violation go away.

I know, people call you on the phone all the time trying to get you to buy this book or that book, and they tell you or imply if you don’t buy the book you are in direct violation of the DOT Regulations. They are referring to [miss-quoting in many cases] a rule that says you have to have a copy of the FMCSRs or have access to it. (fmcsr 390.3). You have access to the regs if you have web access and a shortcut to http://www.fmcsa.dot.gov.

But the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance is a private not-for-profit institution and the only source of the OOS guide.
You can get one at http://www.cvsa.org
In fact, I think this link will get you right to it: http://cvsa.stores.yahoo.net/noamstoucr.html

I usually don’t push my own or anyone else’s product, but the CVSA is not a for-profit organization – all CVSA members give up their time to make the world a safer place for you and me and the pedestrians we care about (grandparents, nieces, nephews, children, grandchildren, neighbors, etc.)
The OOS guide is a valuable reference, and while you MIGHT be able to buy it somewhere else, it comes from this organization.

About DOT Compliance Help Inc
Phone: 847-836-6063 web: www.dotcompliancehelp.com e-mail info@dotcompliancehelp.com DOT Compliance Help, Inc. is a full-service consulting firm specializing in the interpretation and execution of the regulations and guidelines set forth by the US Department of Transportation Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. •Mission Statement• To assist our clients in establishing proper safety management controls in order to minimize accidents, injuries, and fatalities. The ultimate goals are safer roadways for the public and increased profits for our clients. Our core consulting competencies include FMCSA Assessments (mock audits), DOT compliance training (on-site and via webinar) and custom safety plans and policies. We also hold DOT compliance workshops and conferences all across the country. Utilizing a proprietary curriculum developed by our President, Mike England, our classes cover everything you need to know about the FMCSRs, how to survive your next DOT Compliance Review, and how Comprehensive safety Analysis (CSA 2010) will affect you. www.dotcompliancehelp.com

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