The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has recently established a checklist for consumers to better help them choose “responsible” interstate moving companies. Consumers often choose moving companies when they have to transport a large amount of personal property from one state to another. Such companies at times utilize larger trucks and vehicles. Choosing a responsible and safe moving company can also better decrease the rate of Missouri truck accidents.
The FMCSA launched their “Consumer Checklist” on May 23, 2012. The checklist is free and is available online at www.ProtectYourMove.gov. The FMCSA stated that their biggest priority is to allow consumers to choose moving companies that do not engage in any fraudulent or dishonest interstate practices. They state that the checklist will allow consumers to be in a better position to “protect their move” when selecting a particular type of moving company.
The checklist itself deals with some basic factors like knowing the transportation costs, making certain that the consumer is ready to move in the first place, and understanding insurance options in case personal property is either lost or damaged. The FMCSA importantly stresses that monetary concerns should not be the only factor to take into account when selecting a moving company. The FMCSA notes that consumers should research safety performances of the moving companies in question: consumers should research things like the moving company’s complaint history and their on-road safety performance evaluations and records.
The FMCSA has received close to 3,000 complaints concerning interstate moving companies: including personal property being kept by the moving company, sudden and extreme over-charging or unreasonable fees, or damaging of certain goods. For instance, it is possible that an interstate moving company may not properly transport or properly restrain a certain large object like a piece of furniture. This kind of disregard for road safety could result in two results: the object in question could sustain damage due to its improper restraint or the object could become dislodged from the vehicle and trigger an automobile accident. Not only would the consumer lose his or her piece of personal property, but it could also create a car accident resulting in serious or even fatal injuries. Since interstate moving companies often use highways, fellow motorists and drivers may not be able to react fast enough to prevent a car accident in this scenario.
Through the “Protect your Move” checklist, the FMCSA is trying to encourage consumers to support moving companies that have proven to be reputable and safe transportation companies. By encouraging the support of safer transportation companies that operate across state lines, the FMCSA is also attempting to decrease the rate of Missouri truck accidents as well as truck accidents nationally.