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A common question I receive from customers is, “What size do the letters and numbers need to be on the placard or marking on the side of my commercial vehicle?” Ironically, there is NO size designation by measurement. Keep reading to determine how the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) addresses the marking of a vehicle.

Every self-propelled CMV, as defined in CFR 390.5, greater than 10,000lbs MGVWR must be marked and display the following information:

  1. The motor carrier's legal name or a single trade name operating the self-propelled CMV is listed on the motor carrier identification report (Form MCS-150) and submitted following CFR 390.19.
  2. The motor carrier identification number issued by the FMCSA is preceded by the letters “USDOT.”
  3. The City and State of the motor carrier are no longer required to be displayed.

idealease truck

The marking must:

  1.  Appear on both sides of the self-propelled CMV.
  2.  Be in letters that contrast sharply in color with the background on which the letters are placed.
  3. Be readily legible during daylight hours from 50 feet (15.24 meters) while the CMV is stationary.
  4. Be kept and maintained in a manner that retains the legibility of the above requirements.

Construction and Durability

The marking may be painted on the CMV or may consist of a removable device if that device meets the identification and legibility requirements above.

Marking of Rented CMVs from Idealease

A motor carrier operating a self-propelled Idealease CMV under a rental agreement having a term not over 30 calendar days meets the requirements of this section if:

  • The Idealease CMV is marked following the provisions of the marking requirements as stated above.
  • The legal name or a single trade name of the Idealease location is displayed.
  • The Idealease location identification number preceded by the letters “USDOT” is displayed.

The Idealease rental agreement entered into by the Idealease location and the customer renting motor carrier conspicuously contains the following information:

  1. The name and complete physical address of the principal place of business of the Idealease customer renting the CMV.
  2. The identification number issued to the Idealease customer by the FMCSA, preceded by the letters “USDOT,”

If the Idealease customer has been issued such a number. In lieu of the identification number required in this paragraph, the following may be shown in the rental agreement:

  • Information that indicates whether the Idealease customer is engaged in “interstate” or “intrastate.” commerce; and
  • Information that indicates whether the Idealease customer is transporting hazardous materials in the Idealease rented CMV;

     3. The sentence: “That Idealease cooperates with all Federal, State, and local law             enforcement officials nationwide to provide the identity of Idealease customers               who operate the Idealease rental CMV.” Idealease enters into the rental                         agreement, and the Idealease customer is carried on the Idealease rental CMV              during the full term of the rental agreement.

February Is Heart Month: Are You at Risk for Heart Disease?

February marks American Heart Month, a great time to commit to a healthy lifestyle and make small changes that can lead to a lifetime of heart health.

heart disease

Cardiovascular disease (CVD)—including heart disease, stroke, and high blood pressure—is the number 1 killer of women and men in the United States. It is a leading cause of disability, preventing Americans from working and enjoying family activities.  CVD costs the United States over $300 billion yearly, including health care services, medications, and lost productivity.

Recognizing a Stroke

Sometimes symptoms of a stroke are difficult to identify. Unfortunately, the lack of awareness spells disaster. The stroke victim may suffer severe brain damage when people nearby fail to recognize the symptoms of a stroke.

Now doctors say a bystander can recognize a stroke by asking three simple questions:

S  *Ask the individual to SMILE.

T  *Ask  the person to TALK and SPEAK A SIMPLE SENTENCE  (Coherently)

      (i.e., It is sunny out  today)

R  *Ask him or her to RAISE BOTH ARMS.

If he or she has trouble with ANY ONE of these tasks, call the emergency number immediately and describe the symptoms to the dispatcher.

New Sign of a Stroke -------- Stick out Your Tongue Ask the person to ‘stick’ out their tongue.  If the tongue is 'crooked', if it goes to one side or the other, that indicates a stroke.

IRS Updates Guidance and FAQs on Commercial Clean Vehicle Tax Credits

The Internal Revenue Service has updated its guidance and FAQs on commercial clean vehicle tax credits.


The new guidance changes the vehicle classification standard by which vans, sport utility vehicles, pickup trucks, and other vehicles are defined.  In addition, the FAQs updates relate to new, previously owned, and qualified commercial clean vehicles.

The Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 established commercial clean vehicle tax credits in a new section 45W of the Internal Revenue Code.

Section 45W provides a tax credit for purchasing or leasing new commercial electric-powered vehicles placed into service after December 31, 2022, and before January 1, 2033.  The amount of the § 45W credit is the lesser of: (1) 15 percent of the taxpayer’s basis in the vehicle (30 percent in the case of a vehicle not powered by a gasoline or diesel internal combustion engine) or (2) the incremental cost of the vehicle.  Under § 45W(b)(4), the credit is limited to $7,500 for a vehicle with a gross weight rating of fewer than 14,000 pounds and $40,000 for all other vehicles.

Vehicle manufacturers must submit a monthly report to the IRS to demonstrate that its vehicles satisfy the credit eligibility.