Dear Eric: A car stopped short in front of my driver on the interstate. He locked up the brakes, but jacknifed into the median. He did not hit the car. The police were called and filed a report. I went up to the accident scene, and drove the truck and trailer out of the median, and back to the yard. Will this count against my record?
Answer: No, as this does not meet the DOT definition of a recordable accident, which states there must an injury treated away from the scene (no in this case), or a vehicle towed from the scene (no again in this case). I would recommend keeping detailed notes, just in case the police officer checked the wrong box on the accident report, but this should not count as a DOT recordable accident. However, you might want to talk to your drivers about driving too fast, following too closely, or leaving themselves an out when driving. You might not be as lucky next time.
Eric Arnold is a Former Enforcement Agent with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, and a leading expert on USDOT compliance for small businesses. Do you have a question for Eric Arnold? Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.