As the owner of a livery fleet, you most likely have drivers in and out regularly. How can you keep track of everything that is going on when you must also manage the office? The last thing you want to happen is an accident or injury due to disorganization. Not only do you need livery insurance for protection, but also a method to keep track of your livery vehicles.
In early July, three people were hurt when an SUV crashed into the front of Burger King in East Boston. The Ford Explorer smashed into the restaurant in the early morning, leaving the victims, ages 89, 73, and 69, with injuries. Investigators reported that the driver ran away, but then came back briefly to grab a black bag from the car. However, a short time later, the owner of the SUV came to officials and claimed the Explorer was a livery vehicle, which had several drivers. Unfortunately, the man could not identify the person he had given the keys to before the crash, only calling him a “friend.”
What if such an incident occurred for your livery service? This is an example of why you should keep track of what goes on within your livery company so you can avoid liability issues and other damaging claims. You livery company should be in compliance with the FMCSA rules. If you understand these rules, then this situation would never happen, because a company cannot just hire anyone and “hand the keys to them” to operate a commercial vehicle.
The FMCSA has a set of driver qualification rules for drivers that must be met. Here are the major ones you should know:
All drivers of Commercial Motor Vehicles (CMVs) must have the knowledge and skills necessary to operate a CMV safely. The specific types of items that a State must include in the knowledge and skills tests that it administers to CDL applicants are listed in Subpart G.
According to the FMCSA, all drivers of commercial vehicles transporting over 8 passengers must have a Driver Qualification File on file with their Employer. In addition, it must be complete for all annual audits or the Employer may be subject to fines and penalties.
Each Chauffeur must know how to not only safely operate each vehicle, but he/she must also know how to operate all controls inside of each vehicle.
No employer may knowingly allow, require, permit, or authorize a driver to operate a CMV in the United States in any of the following circumstances: (a) During any period in which the driver does not have a current CLP or CDL or does not have a CLP or CDL with the proper class or endorsements; b) During any period in which the driver has a CLP or CDL disqualified by a State; (c) During any period in which the driver has more than one CLP or CDL; (d) During any period in which the CMV he/she is driving is subject to an out-of-service order.
At Wolpert Insurance, we encourage you to stay organized and updated about every detail and FMCSA rule. This can help prevent accidents and mistakes along the way!