Using DataQ to Correct Inaccurate DOT Citations

Aug 23, 2021 1:50:28 PM / by Tiffney Lopez

Dave was recently pulled over by an officer with the Department of Transportation (DOT). After the officer completed his inspection, Dave noticed the data on his inspection report was different than the paper version.

Dave at first thought this was one of the problems with ELDs. What stuck out the most is he saw his Hours of Service were recorded accurately on his ELD, but on the report it says Dave violated his HOS by not taking a 30-minute break... The officer was enforcing a rule that has since been changed.

Thankfully, Dave keeps documentation of everything and can easily refute the violation and submit it supporting data.

Carriers, drivers, and the public have a right to get inaccurate information fixed. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has a way to ask for the incorrect information in the Motor Carrier Management Information System (MCMIS) to be corrected. 

The purpose of the DataQ system is to improve data quality and have a way for the FMCSA “to review and respond to data concerns.” The system continuously updates to make sure the most current information is provided.

In regards to roadside inspection citations:

Drivers and motor carriers may challenge these citations through State judicial or administrative systems. Effective August 23, 2014, motor carriers and drivers are able to submit a Request for Data Review (RDR) in the DataQs system seeking to append information to roadside inspection violations in Agency data systems to reflect more accurately the outcomes of due process proceedings. -- FMCSA DataQs Analyst Guide.

To begin the process of requesting information to be fixed, an account must be created and documentation must be provided. The events taken into consideration, include (but aren't limited to) crashes, inspections, audits, complaints, registration, and insurance. 

Having detailed information and supporting documentation is vital to the credibility of the RDR and data being disputed. Some of that information includes licenses, registration, shipping papers, leases, insurance policies, permits, records of Hour of Service, and any other safety and transportation records.

A review of the data being disputed is done case-by-case. Simply making a request to have information corrected is not enough to have incorrect information fixed. A DataQ analyst will review the information and documentation given in the RDR as well as what is given by the issuing officer to make a decision. 

There is no deadline on when a RDR must be reviewed and a decision made, but the FMCSA website says it must be "done in a timely fashion." DataQ analysts are sent weekly alters and the FMCSA is warned when more than 17 days has passed on an open RDR. 

Drivers may not know violations are on their driving history. There are two ways to find out. The FMCSA's Preemployment Screening Program (PSP) website. A driver can download his or her driving history for a nominal fee. 

A DataQ fact sheet provided by the FMCSA can be found here



Topics: ELDs, fines, FMCSA, DOT, DataQ

Tiffney Lopez

Written by Tiffney Lopez