DOT Requirements for Shipping Motorcycles

Motorcycle transport companies are required to conform to federal regulations when transporting vehicles across state lines. The Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC) enforces regulations pertaining to vehicle transportation.

Bike transport companies must have an active United States Department of Transportation (USDOT) number and adequate cargo insurance in place with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). Motorcycle shipping companies must ensure that their trucks and trailers are in compliance with all federal ICC regulations.

Motorcycle shippers must also comply with federal and state weight restrictions when handling vehicle shipments. Additionally, these shippers must also make stops along their route at designated weight inspection stations to ensure they are in compliance with all federal and state weight requirements. Non-compliance can possibly lead to significant fines and impoundment of their truck and trailer.

Safety inspections are also performed on a random bases. If vehicles being transported are not secured adequately, fines can be assessed for any unsafe conditions found during routine safety inspections.

Drivers are also required to keep a log of hours driven and are limited to the number of hours/days they can drive over a defined time span. They are also required to have routine physicals to ensure they are healthy enough to operate long-haul vehicles in a safe manner. Prior to these regulations accidents were much more common due to driver exhaustion and overloaded trucks. Drivers are also required to have a certain safety equipment on-board their trucks at all times.

The point of this article is to inform our bike shipping customers of the advantages of dealing with a DOT compliant motorcycle transit broker like Shippingmasters. Additionally, we want customers to be aware of the risks involved with shipping through an unlicensed and uninsured vehicle shipping company. If the motorcycle moving company you are considering does not have an active DOT number they cannot have cargo insurance. If they happen to have comprehensive and/or liability insurance, their insurance only applies on their truck and trailer, it does not apply on your vehicle. Remember, always ask for a DOT number and verify cargo insurance with any shipper you consider.