Issues Important to Companies Operating in the Marcellus Shale Oil and Gas Regions of PA

If your company has relocated out-of-state vehicles to Pennsylvania for use in furtherance of the company’s business than the Pennsylvania vehicle code will require that the vehicles and the drivers meet certain requirements.

Logbook Requirements. Commercial vehicles operating in interstate commerce are generally required to maintain logbooks. There is a 100 air-mile exception for vehicles operating within a 100 air-mile radius of the normal work reporting location if the driver has sufficient rest time in between his driving shifts.

Medical Card Requirements. Any driver of a commercial motor vehicle is required to be in possession of a valid medical card. Information regarding how to obtain this medical card can be viewed on PennDOT’s website.

Certain Combinations Require a Commercial Driver’s License. If a motor vehicle combination has a combined gross vehicle weight rating of 26,001 pounds or more, a Commercial Driver’s License is required to operate that combination. Example: A pickup truck with dual rear wheels has a gross vehicle weight rating of 14,000 pounds and is pulling a utility trailer with a gross vehicle weight rating of 9000 pounds. This combination will require that the driver hold a valid Class B Commercial Driver’s License.

U.S. Department of Transportation Registration Requirements. Almost all commercial motor vehicles must display the legal name or single trade name of the motor carrier as well as a Federal DOT number issued by FMSCA preceded by the letters “USDOT”.

Fuel Tax Requirements. Commercial vehicles must display an IFTA fuel tax sticker indicating that your company is paying fuel tax to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania based upon the usage on PA roadways. There are record-keeping requirements which are part of this law.

Registration Requirements. If your vehicles are displaying out-of-state registration plates, you will need to obtain either temporary trip permits for each vehicle carrying on business within Pennsylvania, or in the alternative, the registrations need to be apportioned based upon the vehicles usage between states. A traffic violation of any of the aforementioned requirements will result in stiff fines and in some instances, for example where Commercial Driver’s License is required, the driver will be assigned a Commercial Driver’s License disqualification. This would preclude the driver from obtaining a Commercial Driver’s License for a minimum period of six (6) months and will thereby prevent the driver from driving any commercial motor vehicles until those requirements have been satisfied.

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