FMCSA Says Rear Underride Guard Inspections Will Soon Be Mandatory

Washington D.C. – The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) will soon require mandatory annual inspection of rear underride guards.

This week during the Agency’s Truck Safety Summit, Larry Minor, associate administrator for policy, informed attendees the FMCSA is moving forward with regulatory action on rear underride guard inspections.


“We expect to publish a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) to make rear underride part of the annual inspection that’s required on commercial motor vehicles (CMV),” Minor stated.

In April of 2019. the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) urged the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) to begin requiring rear guards to be inspected during commercial vehicle annual inspections.

The report entitled, “Truck Underride Guards: Improved Data Collections, Research and Inspections Needed,” recommends four actions DOT should take in an effort to reduce underride crashes and the fatalities resulting from them.

“Although tractor-trailers are inspected, FMCSA annual inspection regulations do not require the rear guard to be inspected, so damaged guards that could fail in a crash may be on the roadways,” the report stated.


An underride crash is defined by the GAO as “when a passenger vehicle slides under the body of a tractor-trailer or ‘single-unit truck.’”

The report concludes, “The lack of specific requirements that rear guards be inspected annually for defects or damage potentially affects the safety of the traveling public and FMCSA’s ability to achieve its safety mission.”


FMCSA Boss Makes Case Why ELD Mandate is Not to Blame For Rise in Big Rig Accidents

Speed Limiters, ADAS, and Hair Testing Heavily Discussed at FMCSA’s Safety Summit

FMCSA Loads Safety Summit With Advocates for ELDs, Speed Limiters, Insurance Increases

USDOT Sued For Failure to Enforce Federal Law and Prevent Highway Protests

Meanwhile, safety advocates continue pushing for the mandatory adoption of both side and front underride guards.

Legislative measures were introduced in both the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives in 2019 that would require all tractor-trailers to be equipped with front and side underride guards.


However, the legislation stalled after multiple trucking groups including the American Trucking Associations (ATA) and the Owner Operator Independent Driver’s Association (OOIDA) fiercely argued against it on Capitol Hill. will continue to follow the issue and update you when FMCSA publishes its expected NPRM.



If you enjoyed this article, please help us grow by sharing it. Thank you!

Comment (7)

  1. By default, if you impact the rear of a semi with enough force to shear off the top of your car …. you’re the the threat to the safety of the traveling public.

  2. I was thrown there for a second. I have always called it a DOT bumper, but I guess everything has a technical name. As far as side guards go, you can’t put guards up that will protect cars without sacrificing fuel mileage, but safety advocates won’t give two sh*ts if carriers go under because of paying for more fuel.

  3. When the bumper became mandatory it was called the Mansfield Bumper or at least the regulation was after actress Jayne Mansfield was killed going under a trailer. Here we are 50+ years later still paying for other people’s inattentive, reckless driving.

  4. Bubble wrap the ass-end of the truck, problem solved. The truck stops will make bank selling wraps, the DOT will be happy as they can write more tickets and the motoring public will be much safer when they hit us. We get screwed, but that is what we are here for… An 18 wheel sex toy…

  5. What else is there to inspect in the bumper? bolts,bars integrity of the bars…But why do they put the burden on us? the feds MUST mandate automatic braking on the cars when they get close to any structure,or vehicle,I don t want any one splattered on my ICC bumper,but I can t drive their cars for them,stupid is what stupid does.
    So far,the feds have put ALL the burden and responsability on us, if we are in any accident,it is assumed that it is our fault.
    They must look beyond that mindset,mandate automatic braking on 2021 and newer cars.


Pin It on Pinterest

Share This