The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has ordered a Colorado-based trucking company to end all interstate operations after it discovered flagrant violations of license, hours of service and drug testing regulations and equipment so unsafe it was impounded by state police. It's just the latest in a string increasingly frequent such actions by the FMCSA.
Aurora, Colo.-based vehicle-hauler GD Cars has been labeled as “an imminent hazard to public safety” by the agency with the out-of-service order saying “The investigation uncovered violations of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations so widespread as to demonstrate a continuing and flagrant general disregard for compliance with the FMCSRs and a management philosophy indifferent to motor carrier safety.”
FMCSA says it found serious vehicle safety deficiencies during the course of a compliance review earlier in May, during which time GD Cars dispatched a truck with a trailer to Kansas to retrieve another GD Cars-owned truck and trailer that had been impounded by the Kansas Highway Patrol for serious safety deficiencies.
After loading the impounded truck and starting the return trip to Colorado, the second GD Cars truck and trailer was stopped and inspected by the Kansas Highway Patrol. Serious safety deficiencies were again discovered in the second GD Cars vehicle and it too was immediately ordered out of service and impounded as an imminent hazard to public safety.
In addition to failing to ensure that its vehicles were properly and regularly inspected, repaired and maintained, FMCSA investigators found GD Cars to be in violation of federal regulations requiring random drug and alcohol testing of its drivers. In March one of its drivers was cited for possession of drug paraphernalia during a roadside inspection. The company also failed to monitor and ensure that its drivers complied with federal hours-of-service regulations.
On occasion, the company dispatched a driver who did not possess a commercial driver’s license. FMCSA says prior to the compliance review, GD Cars employed three drivers but none of them held a commercial driver’s license
This month the FMCSA has ordered at least three truck drivers off the road and a number of bus companies shut down following major safety problems it says were discovered.