U.S. Code of Federal Regulations
Regulations most recently checked for updates: Sep 26, 2023
(a) Generally, a motor carrier rated “unsatisfactory” is prohibited from operating a CMV. Information on motor carriers, including their most current safety rating, is available from the FMCSA Safety and Fitness Electronic Records System website at https://safer.fmcsa.dot.gov, or by telephone at (800) 832–5660.
(1) Motor carriers transporting hazardous materials in quantities requiring placarding, and motor carriers transporting passengers in a CMV, are prohibited from operating a CMV in motor carrier operations in commerce beginning on the 46th day after the date of the FMCSA notice of proposed “unsatisfactory” rating.
(2) All other motor carriers rated as a result of reviews are prohibited from operating a CMV in motor carrier operations in commerce beginning on the 61st day after the date of the FMCSA notice of proposed “unsatisfactory” rating. If FMCSA determines that the motor carrier is making a good-faith effort to improve its safety fitness, FMCSA may allow the motor carrier to operate for up to 60 additional days.
(b) A Federal agency must not use a motor carrier that holds an “unsatisfactory” rating to transport passengers in a CMV or to transport hazardous materials in quantities requiring placarding.
(c) A Federal agency must not use a motor carrier for other CMV transportation if that carrier holds an “unsatisfactory” rating.
(d) Penalties. (1) If a proposed “unsatisfactory” safety rating becomes final, FMCSA will issue an order placing out of service the motor carrier's operations in commerce. The out-of-service order shall apply both to the motor carrier's operations in interstate commerce and to its operations affecting interstate commerce.
(2) If a motor carrier's intrastate operations are declared out of service by a State, FMCSA must issue an order placing out of service the carrier's operations in interstate commerce. The following conditions apply:
(i) The State that issued the intrastate out-of-service order participates in the Motor Carrier Safety Assistance Program and uses the FMCSA safety rating methodology provided in this part; and
(ii) The motor carrier has its principal place of business in the State that issued the out-of-service order.
(iii) The order prohibiting the motor carrier from operating a CMV in interstate commerce shall remain in effect until the State determines that the carrier is fit.
(3) Any motor carrier that operates CMVs in violation of this section is subject to the penalty provisions of 49 U.S.C. 521(b) and appendix B to part 386 of the FMCSRs.
(e) Revocation of operating authority. If a proposed “unsatisfactory” safety rating or a proposed determination of unfitness becomes final, FMCSA will, following notice, issue an order revoking the operating authority of the owner or operator. For purposes of this section, the term “operating authority” means the registration required under 49 U.S.C. 13902 and § 392.9a of this subchapter. Any motor carrier that operates CMVs after revocation of its operating authority will be subject to the penalty provisions listed in 49 U.S.C. 14901.