Federal agencies Trucking Transportation

FMCSA final rule adds rear impact guards to annual truck inspection list

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Photo: benkrut/iStockphoto

Washington — Rear impact guards on large commercial trucks must be inspected annually, under a recently issued final rule from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.

Rear impact guards are designed to prevent “underrides,” which occur when a passenger vehicle strikes the rear of a CMV and slides underneath. FMCSA notes that although rear impact guards have been required on CMVs for more than 65 years, they have not been one of components listed in Appendix G for required inspections. This has meant “that a vehicle can pass an annual inspection with a missing or damaged rear impact guard.”

Published in the Nov. 9 Federal Register and effective Dec. 9, the rule adds rear impact guards to Appendix G and amends labeling requirements. “Road construction controlled (RCC) horizontal discharge trailers” are exempt.


In December, FMCSA issued a notice of proposed rulemaking, with a two-month comment period. Seven months later, the Department of Transportation listed the measure in the final rule stage as part of its Spring 2021 regulatory agenda.

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