The Motor Carrier Number

A motor carrier number is a license issued to for-hire carriers by the United States Department of Transportation. Motor carrier numbers are administered by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and are commonly referred to as USDOT numbers.

Uses
• A motor carrier number is a unique identifier for a company that participates in interstate transport of passengers or cargo. It is used to identify a company if there is an accident or a safety audit being completed.

Significance
• The motor carrier number is necessary so that transport companies can legally move loads between states. Many states also require a motor carrier number to be acquired even if the company completes only intrastate transport.

Identification
• A motor carrier number must be displayed prominently on a car or truck. The USDOT number can normally be found on the side of a semi cab or on the front doors of a pickup truck.

Operating Authority
• Depending on the loads to be hauled, most motor carriers also require operating authority. Operating authority dictates what loads may and may not be hauled by a company.

Getting a Motor Carrier Number
• Contact the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration for necessary forms. The FMCSA website includes all forms.

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