More vehicles will fall under PUCO regulation

Buckeye Farm News

Revised state rules extend the jurisdiction of the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) to regulate vehicles with a Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) of 10,001 to 26,000 pounds that are operating on a not-for-hire basis within the state.

However, the existing exemptions for the transportation of farm supplies and farm products haven’t changed.

The agency says the new regulations were adopted so the state could continue to receive federal grant money for the Motor Carrier Safety Assistance Program.

Active enforcement will not begin until Jan. 1, 2011. Until this date, unless violations are egregious, no forfeitures or monetary penalties will be issued, according to  PUCO.

Vehicles and drivers found not to be in compliance can be pulled from service on the spot. Monetary fines may be issued by PUCO.

Summary of the requirements for vehicle with GVWR of 10,001 to 26,000 pounds:

  • Drivers must have a medical certificate (CDL is not required)
  • The truck or van must have company marking on each door
  • Fire extinguisher must be accessible and secured
  • Annual vehicle inspection Vehicle equipment must be in proper working order
  • Maintenance records must be maintained
  • Must maintain $1 million of insurance when hauling vehicles
  • When motor vehicles are hauled there are special requirements for securing the load that must be followed
  • A driver qualification file must be maintained – including the application for hire and the medical certificate 
  • Log books must be maintained, unless the vehicle(s) is within 150 miles of the company location.
  • No log book needs to be maintained if:The driver returns to the work reporting location and is released from work within 12 consecutive hours; the driver does not drive more than 11 hours; the driver has at least 10 hours off between 12 hour shifts; the company maintains and retains for a period of 6 months accurate time records




Lynn Snyder 

Lynn Snyder is senior director of communications for Ohio Farm Bureau.

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