Proficiency Tests for New Carriers to be Considered by FMCSA

Proficiency Tests for New Carriers to be Considered by FMCSA

Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety sent a letter to the federal government 14 years ago suggesting that all new truck drivers will have to pass a regulated test of their skills before they can get a license to drive. In reaction to FMCSA’s 2008 rule meant to improve the safety record of new carriers, a petition was sent in.

FMCSA to Revive Plan for Proficiency Tests for New Carriers

Advocates say that the FMCSA’s final rule did not include a review of how well new motor carriers know and can implement the following: 

  • Federal Motor Carrier Safety Laws
  • Running safe operations. 

The FMCSA put out an ANPR in August 2009, but the plan was never taken any further. 

The New Entrant Safety Assurance Process (NESAP) will get a Supplemental Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (SANPR) from the White House Office of Management and Budget in August 2023. 

Advocates’ General Attorney Peter Kurdock is glad that the government has taken this task off of its long-term tasks list and is instead making uniform tests to make sure that new carriers know and follow federal safety rules.

FMCSA Seeks Feedback on Various Aspects of Proficiency Test for New Carriers

Since its 2009 ANPRM, the FMCSA has taken a long time to put the ability test for new carriers into place. There were 11 different topics on this test. 

These include testing procedures, management, standards for motor carrier workers, costs, expected effects on new entrants, effects on motor carrier safety, and the possibility of making the test part of the New Entrant Safety Assurance Process. 

The scope of the exam also included the costs of making, managing, applying, and giving the test, as well as how they might affect newcomers. 

The test also asked for specifics about how it will make motor carriers safer by making them better at following rules. The government group also asked for information about what smaller businesses need to make a security process.

Trucking Groups Divided Over Proficiency Test for New Carriers

The American Trucking Association (ATA) sent the FMCSA comments on the 2009 proposal. In it, they said that they agreed with the requirement for a competency test and safety training for new drivers. 

The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association (OOIDA) was against the test because of the following reasons:

  • First, it didn’t have enough predictive validity. 
  • Secondly, it also didn’t show practical knowledge of systems that increase compliance. 
  • Third, it didn’t make sure that everyone involved knew what to do.
  • What is more important is that it didn’t set up effective safety compliance systems.
  • Moreover, it didn’t help stop truck accidents.

Final Wording

After Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety asked for it in 2009, the FMCSA is thinking about giving new trucking operators a standard test of their skills. 

Possibilities, prices, sources, demands, and benefits of lowering accident rates and linked deaths may all affect the transport industry. 

There might be a rise in the quality of services, and a drop in worries about the following:

  • Scams and abuse
  • Fewer barriers to entry
  • Less of a reason to try new things and compete. 

For more such news about the logistics and the trucking industry, follow Lading Logistics.