For those who work in logistics, government regulations can impact your operations. Whether you schedule freight for transport, you are a trucker or boat operator, or you manage a company that relies on the successful relocation of goods, knowing the laws the govern transportation can help you avoid steep fines, industry-censure, and unhappy customers. There are several areas where the federal government has established authority over shipping or transport guidelines.
Even dangerous chemicals need to be taken from one location to another, and there is a right way and a wrong way to do so. The federal government keeps a tight rein on any relocation of hazardous materials, given the environmental impact should spills or disaster occur. Special DOT permits and approval need to be received prior to carrying certain hazardous freight, and this approval must meet the minimum safety levels established by law. Approval of loads often includes a competent authority approval from a department official that certifies the load or the process meets regulations.
Those who work in the trucking industry are also subject to minimum insurance requirements before being approved for their trucking permits/licenses. An application needs to be filed with the Federal Motor Carrier Administration, and along with this process, a potential driver must furnish the applicable insurance and legal process documents. Until this paperwork is on file, permission can be withheld. Anyone who acts as a motor carrier, broker authority, or freight forwarder needs to have an application complete.
Even shipments of goods across the waterways are required to have certain levels of insurance and customs approval. Fortunately, the federal government has made many of the forms available online for those who work in logistics, so there is little excuse for being uninformed or unprepared.
Failing to comply with federal regulations can jeopardize your business, as ruin the relationships with your customers. You may also be subject to fines for your actions.