Questions about Securing Spare Tires, Logbook Issues & More Answered by Law Enforcement Officials (as of January 2015)
Warning: Laws are subject to change without notice.
These interpretations were made on December 12, 2014.
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SECURING SPARE TIRES IN CALIFORNIA
Q: What is the proper tie-down requirements for carrying a spare tire on a truck? California has stopped several of our trucks stating that rope, rubber straps and 2-inch straps are not proper. We are being put out-of-service for this and it’s killing our safety rating. Please help! Thanks – Monty in Ohio
A: Provided by Ofc. Jaime Nunez, California Highway Patrol, Commercial Vehicle Section, Sacramento, CA: In California, your tire must be secured to prevent the tire from coming loose. Don’t carry your spare tire on your tractor unless it’s in a carrier or space designed to carry spare tires. Pursuant to Title 13, California Code of Regulations (13 CCR), Section 1244(b), externally-mounted spare tires are required to “…be contained and supported by tire carriers or other means specifically designed for the purpose and secured to prevent accidental release of the tires.”
REQUIRED LOGBOOK RETENTION TIME
Q: I have been talking with truckers about the hours-of-service (HOS) and everyone seems to have a different opinion about the answer to this question: How long does a driver have to retain his old logbooks? I’ve been told all kinds of things – from six months to two years. What is the “legal retention time” for keeping a logbook? Thank you – David in Maryland
A: Provided by Officer Jaime Nunez, California Highway Patrol, Commercial Vehicle Section, Sacramento, CA: The answer to your question can be found in 49 CFR 395.8(k)(1) Retention of Driver’s Record of Duty Status, which says, “Each motor carrier shall maintain records of duty status and all supporting documents for each driver it employs for a period of six months from the date of receipt.”
DRIVER FORCED TO USE TWO LOGBOOKS
Q: As a company driver, can my company require me to run two logbooks at once? Thank you – Mike in California
A: Provided by Sgt. Pete Camm (Ret.), California Highway Patrol, Sacramento, CA: Yes, but only if both logs are filled out exactly the same and the information is correct. If both logs aren’t the same and the log entries are for the same days or the same trip, then you are looking at getting a violation for possessing a false log. A driver presenting a false logbook is subject to being cited under 34506(a) VC, Title 13, California Code of Regulations, 1213(f) or under federal regulation 395.8(e) CFR, and placed out of service (red-lined).
LOGGING COMPANY SAFETY MEETINGS
Q: The company I work for has been put on the FMCSA “Watch List” for not putting down the towns/cities on their driver’s logbook entries (I think it’s more than that) so they set up a voluntary safety meeting on a Saturday to discuss the issue. I was told that I don’t have to log this meeting at all because it’s voluntary. I’m thinking that it’s “on-duty not driving” because it’s about work and it is supposed to go on for maybe two hours or more – am I wrong? Please help – Brian in Washington
A: Provided by Senior Trooper Monty Dial (Ret.), Texas Highway Patrol, Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Division, Garland, TX: There is an interpretation that gives you your answer. It’s found in the interpretations for Part 395.2, Question #19, which states that as long as the meeting is voluntary, then attending the meeting can be logged as Off Duty. If the meeting is mandatory, then the meeting is logged as On-Duty Not Driving. Make sure you know if the meeting is voluntary or mandated, because that will determine how exactly you should record it in your logbook.
~ The Ask The Law™ programs are an ongoing educational effort between Ol’ Blue, USA™ and commercial law enforcement agencies. Ol’ Blue, USA is a non-profit organization dedicated to highway safety education and to improving relations between the motoring public, law enforcement and commercial drivers. “Ask The Law” is a registered trademark of Ol’ Blue, USA. This column is copyrighted© by Ol’ Blue, USA. Warning: Laws are subject to change without notice. These interpretations were made on December 12, 2014.