Interstate vs. Intrastate Definitions
Interstate commerce is the movement of a shipment or service across state or international borders, or the intent to continue a movement within a state that originated from another state or country. In practical terms, you could still be considered interstate commerce even if you never cross the state line, depending upon the origin and destination of the shipment or service.
Intrastate commerce is the movement that originates in a single state, moves in that state only and delivers in that originating state.
Interstate vs. Intrastate Interpretation
How does one distinguish between intra-and interstate commerce for the purposes of applicability of the FMCSRs?
Interstate commerce is determined by the essential character of the movement, manifested by the shipper's fixed and persistent intent at the time of shipment, and is ascertained from all of the facts and circumstances surrounding the transportation. When the intent of the transportation being performed is interstate in nature, even when the route is within the boundaries of a single State, the driver and CMV are subject to the FMCSRs.
Commercial Motor Vehicle/Driver Definitions
There are (2) definitions within the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations ( FMCSR’s):
390.5 – Used for Driver Qualification
382 – Used for DOT Drug and Alcohol
Commercial Motor Vehicle (CMV) (§390.5)
Driver Qualification – A vehicle used on highways, in interstate commerce, and meets any one of the following criteria:
Has a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) or gross combination weight rating, or gross vehicle weight or gross combination weight of more than 10,000 pounds, whichever is greater
Is designed or used to transport 16 or more people including the driver
Is transporting HM in quantities requiring the vehicle to be placarded
Visit DOT website to find out more about DOT regulations.