Commercial Shipping: Information on How Intermodal Chassis Are Made Available and the Federal Government’s Oversight Role

Senate Report 116-109— incorporated by reference into the explanatory statement accompanying the Further Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2020—contained a provision for the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to study intermodal chassis. This briefing describes selected stakeholders’ views on: (1) the ways in which chassis are made available for the movement of shipping containers and the benefits and drawbacks of those models, and (2) the federal government’s role in the chassis market. To address these objectives, GAO reviewed relevant reports on chassis provisioning and federal oversight. GAO interviewed representatives from the Federal Maritime Commission (FMC), Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), five industry associations, and the three largest chassis providers (known as intermodal equipment providers (IEP)). GAO interviewed three ocean carriers, five port operators, and a motor carrier selected, in part, for their large number of container movements. The information GAO obtained from these interviews provides a broad perspective of relevant issues but is not generalizable to all entities. GAO also reviewed FMCSA crash and inspection data from fiscal year 2010 through 2019 and found these data to be sufficiently reliable for describing general safety issues. GAO provided content from this briefing to FMC, FMCSA, three IEPs, and two trade associations for their review and comment. GAO incorporated the comments they received, as appropriate.


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Digital/other
  • Features: Figures; Photos; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 17p

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01766891
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: GAO-21-315R
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Mar 8 2021 1:33PM