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TITLE 37PUBLIC SAFETY AND CORRECTIONS
PART 1TEXAS DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC SAFETY
CHAPTER 4COMMERCIAL VEHICLE REGULATIONS AND ENFORCEMENT PROCEDURES
SUBCHAPTER BREGULATIONS GOVERNING TRANSPORTATION SAFETY
RULE §4.11General Applicability and Definitions

(a) The director of the Texas Department of Public Safety incorporates, by reference, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations, Title 49, Code of Federal Regulations, Parts 40, 380, 382, 385 - 387, 390 - 393, and 395 - 397 including all interpretations thereto, as amended through June 1, 2020. All other references in this subchapter to the Code of Federal Regulations also refer to amendments and interpretations issued through June 1, 2020. The rules detailed in this section ensure:

  (1) a commercial motor vehicle is safely maintained, equipped, loaded, and operated;

  (2) the responsibilities imposed on a commercial motor vehicle's operator do not impair the operator's ability to operate the vehicle safely;

  (3) the physical condition of a commercial motor vehicle's operator enables the operator to operate the vehicle safely;

  (4) commercial motor vehicle operators are qualified, by reason of training and experience, to operate the vehicle safely; and

  (5) the minimum levels of financial responsibility for motor carriers of property or passengers operating commercial motor vehicles in interstate, foreign, or intrastate commerce is maintained as required.

(b) Certain terms, when used in the federal motor carrier safety regulations as adopted in subsection (a) of this section, have the following meanings, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise.

  (1) Motor carrier--Has the meaning assigned by Texas Transportation Code, §643.001(6) when vehicles operated by the motor carrier meet the applicability requirements of subsection (c) of this section.

  (2) Hazardous material shipper--A consignor, consignee, or beneficial owner of a shipment of hazardous materials.

  (3) Interstate or foreign commerce--All movements by motor vehicle, both interstate and intrastate, over the streets and highways of this state.

  (4) Department--The Texas Department of Public Safety.

  (5) Director--The director of the Texas Department of Public Safety or the designee of the director.

  (6) Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA)--The director of the Texas Department of Public Safety for vehicles operating in intrastate commerce.

  (7) Farm vehicle--Any vehicle or combination of vehicles controlled and/or operated by a farmer or rancher being used to transport agriculture commodities, farm machinery, and farm supplies to or from a farm or ranch.

  (8) Commercial motor vehicle--Has the meaning assigned by Texas Transportation Code, §548.001(1) if operated intrastate; commercial motor vehicle has the meaning assigned by Title 49, Code of Federal Regulations, §390.5 if operated interstate.

  (9) Foreign commercial motor vehicle--Has the meaning assigned by Texas Transportation Code, §648.001.

  (10) Agricultural commodity--Has the meaning as defined in Title 49, Code of Federal Regulations, §395.2 and includes wood chips.

  (11) Planting and harvesting seasons--Are January 1 to December 31.

  (12) Producer--A person engaged in the business of producing or causing to be produced for commercial purposes an agricultural commodity. The term includes the owner of a farm on which the commodity is produced and the owner's tenant or sharecropper.

  (13) Off-road motorized construction equipment--Includes but is not limited to, motor scrapers, backhoes, motor graders, compactors, excavators, tractors, trenchers, bulldozers, and other similar equipment routinely found at construction sites and that is occasionally moved to or from construction sites by operating the equipment short distances on public highways. Off-road motorized construction equipment is not designed to operate in traffic and such appearance on a public highway is only incidental to its primary functions. Off-road motorized construction equipment is not considered to be a commercial motor vehicle as that term is defined in Texas Transportation Code, §644.001.

  (14) The phrase "The commercial driver's license requirements of part 383 of this subchapter" as used in Title 49, Code of Federal Regulations, §382.103(a)(1) shall mean the commercial driver's license requirements of Texas Transportation Code, Chapter 522.

  (15) For purposes of removal from safety-sensitive functions for prohibited conduct as described in Title 49, Code of Federal Regulations, §382.501(c), commercial motor vehicle means a vehicle subject to the requirements of Texas Transportation Code, Chapter 522 and a vehicle subject to §4.22 of this title (relating to Contract Carriers of Certain Passengers), in addition to those vehicles enumerated in Title 49, Code of Federal Regulations, §382.501(c).

(c) Applicability.

  (1) The FMCSA regulations are applicable to the vehicles detailed in subparagraph (A) - (G) of this paragraph:

    (A) a vehicle or combination of vehicles with an actual gross weight or a gross weight rating in excess of 26,000 pounds when operating intrastate;

    (B) a farm vehicle or combination of farm vehicles with an actual gross weight or a gross weight rating of 48,000 pounds or more when operating intrastate;

    (C) a vehicle designed or used to transport more than 15 passengers, including the driver;

    (D) a vehicle transporting hazardous material requiring a placard;

    (E) a foreign commercial motor vehicle that is owned or controlled by a person or entity that is domiciled in or a citizen of a country other than the United States;

    (F) a contract carrier transporting the operating employees of a railroad on a road or highway of this state in a vehicle designed to carry 15 or fewer passengers; and

    (G) a covered farm vehicle as defined in Texas Transportation Code, §522.004 and in Title 49, Code of Federal Regulations, §390.5 qualifies for the commercial driver license (CDL) exemption only when a gross vehicle weight (GVW) or gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR), whichever is greater, of more than 26,001 lbs. is operated in intrastate commerce. All other covered farm vehicle exemptions apply in intrastate commerce at a GVW or GVWR of 48,000 lbs. or more.

  (2) The regulations contained in Title 49, Code of Federal Regulations, §392.9a, and all interpretations thereto, are applicable to motor carriers operating exclusively in intrastate commerce and to the intrastate operations of interstate motor carriers that have not been federally preempted by the United Carrier Registration Act of 2005. The term "operating authority" as used in Title 49, Code of Federal Regulations, §392.9a, for the motor carriers described in this paragraph, shall mean compliance with the registration requirements found in Texas Transportation Code, Chapter 643. For purposes of enforcement of this paragraph, peace officers certified to enforce this chapter, shall verify that a motor carrier is not registered, as required in Texas Transportation Code, Chapter 643, before placing a motor carrier out-of-service. Motor carriers placed out-of-service under Title 49, Code of Federal Regulations, §392.9a may request a review under §4.18 of this title (relating to Intrastate Operating Authority Out-of-Service Review). All costs associated with the towing and storage of a vehicle and load declared out-of-service under this paragraph shall be the responsibility of the motor carrier and not the department or the State of Texas.

  (3) All regulations contained in Title 49, Code of Federal Regulations, Parts 40, 380, 382, 385 - 387, 390 - 393 and 395 - 397, and all interpretations thereto pertaining to interstate drivers and vehicles are also adopted except as otherwise excluded.

  (4) A medical examination certificate, issued in accordance with Title 49, Code of Federal Regulations, §§391.14, 391.41, 391.43, and 391.45, shall expire on the date indicated by the medical examiner; however, no such medical examination certificate shall be valid for more than two years from the date of issuance.

  (5) Nothing in this section shall be construed to prohibit an employer from requiring and enforcing more stringent requirements relating to safety of operation and employee health and safety.


Source Note: The provisions of this §4.11 adopted to be effective March 9, 2004, 29 TexReg 2376; amended to be effective August 31, 2004, 29 TexReg 8375; amended to be effective January 4, 2005, 29 TexReg 12235; amended to be effective May 22, 2005, 30 TexReg 3031; amended to be effective September 22, 2005, 30 TexReg 6065; amended to be effective January 24, 2006, 31 TexReg 404; amended to be effective May 30, 2006, 31 TexReg 4442; amended to be effective October 1, 2006, 31 TexReg 8109; amended to be effective January 28, 2007, 32 TexReg 245; amended to be effective April 30, 2007,32TexReg 2370; amended to be effective August 16, 2007, 32 TexReg 5034; amended to be effective January 2, 2008, 32 TexReg 10056; amended to be effective June 11, 2008, 33 TexReg 4527; amended to be effective December 10, 2008, 33 TexReg 10048; amended to be effective February 25, 2010, 35 TexReg 1470; amended to be effective November 8, 2010, 35 TexReg 9919; amended to be effective May 10, 2011, 36 TexReg 2995; amended to be effective June 26, 2012, 37 TexReg 4602; amended to be effective July 6, 2014, 39 TexReg 5190; amended to be effective March 29, 2015, 40 Texeg 1859; amended to be effective July 27, 2016, 41 TexReg 5432; amended to be effective January 9, 2018, 43 TexReg 95; amended to be effective June 20, 2018, 43 TexReg 3909; amended to be effective October 16, 2018, 43 TexReg 6845; amended to be effective August 15, 2019, 44 TexReg 4192; amended to be effective September 13,2020, 45 TexReg 6378

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