4-10 Fire Prevention Week
Fire Prevention Week is coming and it is a good time to review with
your drivers how to prevent fires and how to react to a fire that
occurs in their commercial motor vehicle.
Fire extinguisher inspection is a vital part of a driver’s daily
vehicle inspection process. It amazes me how many times I
will be looking at a truck and find the fire extinguisher has lost
it pressure do to a leak or was used and returned to the truck
without being recharged. The actions of a driver at the time
of a fire are crucial in saving lives and controlling the amount of
When a fire occurs in a commercial motor vehicle the driver has to
know two things:
1. Knowlege about fires.
2. How to operate a fire extinguisher
Fire safety and Fire Extinguisher
Operation should be part of every new driver's orientation program
Federal Motor Carrier Safety regulations require that all
commercial motor vehicles have a fire extinguisher on board that is
of the correct size, type and properly secured and labeled.
Did you know that a CMV with hazardous materials is required to
have a different size extinguisher than those not carrying
Emergency equipment on all power units.
truck, truck tractor, and bus (except those towed in driveaway-towaway
operations) must be equipped as follows:
A power unit that is used to transport hazardous materials in a
quantity that requires placarding must be equipped with a
fire extinguisher having an Underwriters’ Laboratories rating of 10
B:C or more.
power unit that is not used to transport hazardous materials
must be equipped with either:
fire extinguisher having an Underwriters’ Laboratories rating
of 5 B:C or more.
and marking. Each fire extinguisher required by this section
must be labeled or marked by the manufacturer with its
Underwriters’ Laboratories rating.
Indicators. The fire extinguisher must be designed,
constructed, and maintained to permit visual determination of
whether it is fully charged.
location, and mounting. The fire extinguisher(s)
must be filled and located so that it is readily accessible for
use. The extinguisher(s) must be securely mounted to prevent
sliding, rolling, or vertical movement relative to the motor
When a fire occurs in a Commercial
Motor Vehicle the driver should take the following actions:
the truck off of the roadway and into an open area if
possible. Park away from buildings, trees, vehicles or
anything else that may catch fire.
911 on your cell phone to report the fire and location.
the fire is already to a size that cannot be extinguished get
away from the truck. Your life and the life of the
general public is your first responsibility.
you are operating a tractor trailer and can safely disconnect
the trailer from the tractor do so as not to damage both units
and cargo in the fire.
the engine is on fire turn off the engine as soon as possible.
not open the hood if possible and try to extinguish the fire
from the louvers, radiator or underside of the truck.
Opening the hood will provide additional oxygen to fire and it
will increase at a more rapid rate.
the fire is in your trailer or cargo box of the truck keep the
doors shut. Here again additional oxygen will increase
the intensity of the fire.
tire fire will not likely be extinguished with a fire
extinguisher. Try throwing dirt or sand on the tire to
smother the fire.
What you can do to prevent the
likelihood of a fire starting in your Commercial Motor Vehicle:
a thorough pre and post trip inspection daily of the fuel,
electrical, exhausts systems, tires and cargo of your truck.
the unit clean from excess grease, fuel and oil.
your dash gauges while in operation for signs of overheating.
your mirrors for signs of smoke or flames.
new Post Emission 2007 and newer units be aware of
regeneration of the after treatment program and where the
regeneration occurs as exhaust temperatures reach high levels
the cargo that you have on board and its fire potential.
Keep you family safe with a
working smoke alarm in every bedroom
Did you know that
roughly half of home fire deaths result from fires reported between
11 p.m. and 7 a.m., when most people are asleep?
alarms save lives. If there is a fire in your home, smoke spreads
fast and you need smoke alarms to give you time to get out. In
fact, having a working smoke alarm cuts the chances of dying in a
reported fire in half!
Electronic Logging and other Rules
Delayed in Latest DOT Agenda
commercial trucking and busing industries will need to wait an
additional month before laying eyes on a final rule governing
electronic logging devices (ELDs), according to the latest
projection from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA).
The agency had been expecting to publish the ELD rule by the end of
this month but is now projecting a publication date of October 30,
2015. The rule has been undergoing review by the White House's
Office of Management and Budget (OMB) since late July. Approval
from the OMB - the last step before the final ELD rule can be
published - is expected by October 26, 2015.
significant rules facing delays include:
final "anti-coercion" rule which would prohibit
motor carriers, shippers, receivers, and others from forcing
drivers to violate federal safety or hazardous materials
regulations. The projected publication date has been delayed
by one month, to October 29, 2015.
rule that would create a central database (clearinghouse) of
commercial driver's license holders who have tested positive
or refused a mandatory drug or alcohol test. Publication of
this rule is now expected in early March 2016, about five
weeks later than planned.
proposed rule that would require the installation of speed
limiting devices on heavy trucks, with publication of a draft
version now expected around September 21, 2015.
proposed rule containing new standards for the training of
entry-level drivers, with publication delayed one month to
November 16, 2015.
proposed "Carrier Safety Fitness Determination" rule
remains on track for publication by September 30, 2015. Once
finalized, perhaps in 2016, the rule will change the way motor
carriers are rated, relying more heavily on a carrier's on-road performance
in place of in-house audits.
The ELD rule will require most interstate commercial truck and bus
drivers to begin using electronic recorders to track their hours of
work, affecting more than 3 million drivers. Most drivers who
currently complete paper logs will need to switch to ELDs within
two years after the rule's effective date, although exceptions will
likely be granted for certain short-haul and intermittent drivers.
Drivers who currently use a compliant electronic logging system are
expected to have four years to make sure their devices comply with
the new ELD standards.
SAFE Trucking Act Bill Introduced
September 10, 2015, U.S. Representative Reid Ribble ( R-WI )
introduced the Safe, Flexible, and Efficient (SAFE) Trucking Act, a
bill that aims to increase efficiency and safety on roads, while
decreasing wear and tear on the nation's transportation
infrastructure. This would be accomplished by increasing the cargo
weight limit for freight-carrying trucks, which would likely result
in fewer trucks on roads.
The Act would give states the option to allow trucks to carry a
maximum of 91,000 pounds of freight. The current allowance is
80,000 pounds. To insure safe stopping distance and wear on
pavement, these heavier trucks would be required to have a sixth
axle, up from the current five-axle configuration. The Department
of Transportation (DOT) said that the six-axle configuration would
be compliant with the current federal bridge formula.