At Front Range Compliance Services, LLC, we assist companies in filing their Motor Vehicle Records (MVR) for their drivers, ensuring that each of their CDL drivers are maintaining safe status. It is our responsibility to keep you in compliance with the Driver Qualification requirements of 49 CFR 391.
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What is an MVR?
Essentially, a Motor Vehicle Record (MVR) is a report card for each of your driver’s behavior, performance and history, also known as a driving record. The MVR features only the documented incidents and violations that have occurred for each and every driver. The length an incident or violation will stay on your MVR is dependent state-to-state. Most common violations include some sort of lapse in license due to administrative reasons. A few of the most common reasons we at see lapsed licenses include unpaid tickets, unpaid or past due child support, speeding tickets, and DUI’s.
What is on an MVR?
The information on an MVR is very similar, if not the same, to the information on a drivers license; basic personal information like height, weight and a vague description or the driver. With that personal information comes additional details on your license expiration, status, license class, endorsements, restrictions, traffic violations, accidents, vehicular crimes, suspensions and precautions you should take when operating a vehicle. These could include medical restrictions like corrective lenses or an air brakes endorsement.
Driver Motor Vehicle Records (MVR)
When To Check Driver's MVRs
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) requires that the driver's MVR is completed at the time of hire and checked at a minimum of once annually. It is not a requirement that the MVR is checked specifically by you, however it is highly encouraged. It is our recommendation that as an owner-operator you hire Front Range Compliance Services, LLC, to keep you in compliance with the Driver Qualification requirements of 49 CFR 391.
At FRCS, we are able to pull MVRs, for companies that utilize our services, in all states except California. We provide assistance in getting rid of all of the intricate and annoying data points that vary state-to-state, we can provide a simple copy of the MVR or a review on any drivers with safety concerns. Simply put, we can be the employee of the month you never knew you needed.
If you employ drivers in possession of a CDL, whether they are just a “truck driver" or an employee who drives a pickup and a trailer for your business, you’re legally required to pull their MVR at least once a year. If there are non-CDL drivers in your employ, you are still required to check MVRs at-hire and annually. It is our recommendation at FRCS that companies check their driver’s MVRs throughout the year. By instilling this practice, you will be able to verify the quality of driving each of your employees is doing, ensuring safety in your organization.
Failure to pull and review MVRs, or having gaps in annual MVR checks, can leave the employer with the potential of being liable for any kind of incident and subject to penalty from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.
Insurance Companies and MVRs
You may be thinking, “My insurance company completes my MVRs.” This is not true 99.9% of the time. Your insurance company will run a soft screen to check the drivers status and insurability but not the required MVR. If you think your provider is checking your driver’s MVR ask them for the copies. If they can’t provide the actual copy of the legal MVR then no MVR has been completed and you must run them yourself. Or ask us, your trusted third party, to run them for you.
Let’s say you hire a new employee with a clean driving record. Over the course of the next few months, that driver acquires one or two driving violations off the clock in their personal vehicle. Although the violations are seemingly minor, these violations will continue to add up and create costly implications for both the driver and the company. It is the insurance company’s job to examine the most current driving records of both parties, subsequently deciding who’s at fault for damages. When they do, they’ll find that your employee has a history of driving violations but with no action against those violations by your company.
If you’re only pulling MVRs once a year, at-hire or just never doing it, there’s no way to know that your employee had these violations. Although a convincing argument, it won’t matter to insurance companies. What they’ll see is that you allowed an employee with a history of unsafe driving to operate a motor vehicle on behalf of your company and, as a result, a crash happened. This will send your premium skyrocketing and potentially make you liable for the crash.
In some states, you as a company may be found responsible for the crash, as it could fall under “negligent hiring” or “negligent retention.” This means that you’re found guilty of hiring or keeping an employee with an unsafe driving record. Even if you had no previous knowledge of these infractions, you’re running the risk of being found at fault for the poor driving of an employee.
After all, a crash could cost your company millions, whether it be from the overwhelming legal fees from a lawsuit, from the damages incurred in the crash, any property damages, medical expenses, rising insurance premiums or loss of productivity. Worse than that is the hit that is taken to a company’s reputation after a serious crash. A company’s revenue after a negligent crash can drop an average of 8% from the negative press.
In the DOT Industry crashes cannot be completely avoided however, with routine MVR checks you will be able to save your company millions in potential lawsuits. FRCS is here to help you to ensure that your drivers are always practicing safe driving habits.
The harsh reality for fleet owners is that despite the fact that fleet crashes cause major problems for their drivers, communities and the company itself, most fleet owners don’t use continuous driver monitoring.
Studies have shown that only about 30 percent of all fleet owners employ some sort of driver monitoring. Almost 60 percent of companies don’t even have a driver safety program. Two-thirds of companies don’t pull employee driving records once a year, and a quarter of companies use an electronic MVR system. Despite those compelling numbers, 80 percent of companies say that driver safety is their number one priority but they aren’t really doing anything to reinforce that statement. So how do you make driver risk management a priority?
The quick and easy solution is to hire FRCS to help you manage all of those programs. Not only will we frequently check the MVRs for your drivers but we will also help you develop and manage an effective safety program.
Peace of mind is found in the knowledge of knowing your drivers are maintaining their drivers license and commercial drivers license status. We can help you avoid getting that dreadful call to let you know a driver has just been placed out of service because they got stopped and their license was suspended, cancelled or revoked. Now you have a driver, truck, and a cargo shipment stuck or you have a client waiting for your team and they are a no show.
Keeping your team and program moving is the foundation for success. Contact FRCS today to help you avoid this unnecessary stress, we will ensure that you and your company is in the best compliance standing.