How Does IFTA Apply to Carriers Operating on Lease Agreements?
Generally, the owner of the vehicle is responsible for reporting and paying fuel taxes.
However, some lease agreements specify which party —the lessor (owner) or the lessee —will be responsible for reporting fuel taxes. The responsible party should obtain the IFTA license and file quarterly taxes.
No matter who obtains the IFTA license, the driver of an IFTA-licensed vehicle must carry a copy of the license and the vehicle must display IFTA decals.
We also recommend that a copy of the lease agreement be kept in the vehicle's cab.
US DOT Bans Texting at the Wheel
The US Department of Transportation (USDOT) today (01/26/2010) announced federal guidance to expressly prohibit texting by drivers of commercial vehicles such as large trucks and buses. The prohibition is effective immediately and is the latest in a series of actions taken by the Department to combat distracted driving.
The Department wants the drivers of big rigs and buses and those who share the roads with them to be safe, and will be taking more steps to eliminate the threat of distracted driving.
The action is the result of the Department's interpretation of standing rules. Truck and bus drivers who text while driving commercial vehicles may be subject to civil or criminal penalties of up to $2,750.
"Our regulations will help prevent unsafe activity within the cab."
- Anne Ferro, Administrator for the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA).
FMCSA research shows that drivers who send and receive text messages take their eyes off the road for an average of 4.6 seconds out of every 6 seconds while texting. At 55 miles per hour, this means that the driver is traveling the length of a football field, including the end zones, without looking at the road. Drivers who text while driving are more than 20 times more likely to get in an accident than non-distracted drivers. Because of the safety risks associated with the use of electronic devices while driving, FMCSA is also working on additional regulatory measures that will be announced in the coming months.
Visit www.distraction.gov to learn more about the efforts the U.S. Department of Transportation is working on to combat distracted driving.
Industry News: FMCSA to Hold Hours of Service Sessions
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) announced on January 5th that it will hold three public listening sessions to solicit comments and information on potential hours of service (HOS) regulations. The Agency wants to know what factors, issues and data it should be aware of as it prepares to issue a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) on HOS requirements for property carrying commercial motor vehicles (CMV) drivers.
The sessions will be held in the Washington, DC, Dallas and Los Angeles areas. The listening sessions will allow interested persons to present comments, views and relevant research on revisions FMCSA should consider in its forthcoming rulemaking. All comments will be transcribed and placed in the rulemaking docket for the FMCSA's consideration.