Although a 1995 law removed a requirement that FMCSA approve requests for operating authority transfers, the agency still has asked that fleets submit the applications for review. However, a Federal Register notice on Aug. 23 has officially ended that practice.
Currently, operating authority is transferred only when a trucking company is sold, the agency said. The authority is tied to a U.S. Department of Transportation number, and the two cannot be transferred independently.
Since DOT numbers are used to track safety, FMCSA prohibits transfers that are designed to mask a poor safety record and said receiving a notice of transfer helps it find “chameleon” carriers. “We believe it is in the public interest, and a necessary feature of our commercial and safety oversight roles, to record information about the resulting ownership and control consequences when [carriers] merge, transfer or lease their operating rights,” FMCSA said.
Ira Lipsius, president of the Central Analysis Bureau Inc., said FMCSA’s…
By Timothy Cama, Staff Reporter
This story appears in the Sept. 2 print edition of Transport Topics.