Early Warning Reporting (EWR), FAQ's


EWR Account Questions

Last Updated: April 26, 2004

How do I apply for an EWR account?

To apply for an EWR account, you have to fill out an EWR Manufacturer Account application and submit it to the Office of Defects Investigation either via FAX (202)366-7882 or e-mail odi.ewr@dot.gov. This is available on the NHTSA ODI web site http://www-odi.nhtsa.dot.gov and from NHTSA ODI (202) 366-3348 or you can e-mail ewrhelp@nhtsa.dot.gov. Download the application and submit it to the Office of Defects Investigation (ODI). ODI will then send you your account information in a secure fashion.

How do I get an account to submit field reports to the field report SFTP server?

If you already have a manufacturer EWR account to submit aggregate, Death and Injury, or Substantially Similar Vehicle EWR data, you can use that account to submit field reports. If you have not applied for an EWR account, fill out the EWR Manufacturer Account application and submit it to the Office of Defects Investigation as described in the previous question. If you have an EWR account, a field report SFTP account is created automatically.

Who should submit field reports?

Manufacturers of products that fall into the following reporting categories are required to submit field reports:

  • Buses, Medium and Heavy Vehicles
  • Child Restraints
  • Light Vehicles
  • Motorcycles
  • Trailers

My company has merged with another company but we are planning to submit EWR data separately. Do we need to apply for separate EWR accounts, or can we use a single EWR account?

Because you will be submitting data separately and therefore will have separate primary and secondary contacts, you should apply for separate manufacturer EWR accounts.

I've forgotten my EWR password. What do I do?

Contact NHTSA at (202) 366-3348.

How do I confirm who the primary/secondary EWR contacts are for my company?

Contact NHTSA at (202) 366-3348.

How do I get EWR contact information changed?

Contact NHTSA at (202) 366-3348.

How do I change my EWR password?

You can change your EWR password after logging in to your EWR Account.

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EWR Templates

Last Updated: April 20, 2012

What are the acceptable formats for EWR data submissions?

You may use only one of the following formats for EWR submissions:

  • Microsoft® Excel 2000, 2002 (Office XP) or 2003 (XLS)
  • Microsoft® Excel 2007 or 2010 (XLSX)
  • Extensible Markup Language (XML)
NOTE: If you are going to be submitting data in XML format, be careful NOT to rename any XML schema files that you download from the NHTSA ODI web site.

Where do I go to get EWR templates?

Access the NHTSA ODI web site (URL: http://www-odi.nhtsa.dot.gov), and click on EWR Information. The Early Warning Reporting (EWR) page appears. There are Microsoft® Excel templates and Extensible Markup Language (XML) schema and instance files available for downloading to your local machine. These templates, schema, and instance files are updated from time to time. You should check the following pages on the web site periodically to see if any information has changed:

Excel Templates / XML Instances / XML Schema

Can I create my own templates?

If you are planning to submit your EWR data using Microsoft® Excel format, the answer is no. You must use the templates provided on the NHTSA ODI web site because these templates contain macros that are used to process the data. If you are planning to submit data using the XML format, you can create your own template using the appropriate XML schema or populate the XML instances that are available on the Early Warning Reporting page. The file name and data that you use with these templates must conform to the appropriate file naming and data syntax conventions respectively. For more information, please refer to the appropriate NHTSA ODI compendium document that is also available on the NHTSA ODI web site.

To see a list of the available compendiums, click on Compendiums in the Documents dropdown list at the top of the page. The Compendium page will appear.

Can I validate my EWR files before submitting them to NHTSA?

If you are submitting EWR files in XML format, the answer is yes. You can use the NHTSA EWR XML Validator, which can be downloaded from the NHTSA ODI web site. The NHTSA EWR XML Validator is an application that enables you to validate your XML files using the appropriate XML schema that is available on the web site. To download the EWR XML Validator, click on the NHTSA EWR XML Validator link in the Downloads dropdown list. This link takes you to the NHTSA EWR XML Validator page.

How do I name my EWR files prior to submission?

For information about file naming conventions, refer to the appropriate NHTSA ODI compendium document. These documents are available on the NHTSA ODI web site. To see a list of the available compendiums, click on Compendiums in the Documents dropdown list at the top of the page. The Compendium page will appear.

When should I increment the EWR report version number?

You cannot change the report version number unless you have submitted a previous version of the report and you received an e-mail notification that the report was accepted (passed validation). If you received an email notification stating that the report was rejected (failed validation), DO NOT increment the report version number when you re-submit.

NOTE: You must make sure that the report version number that appears on the ReportInfo tab matches the version number that appears in the file name.

What is the latest revision of the template files?

The current NHTSA Revision Number and Last Updated date for the template files are shown on the corresponding Downloads page.

Can I trust the macros that are contained in the Microsoft® Excel templates?

Yes. When you open one of the Excel templates, a Security Warning message appears that tells you that the macros contained in the template are from NHTSA. Click on the Details button to see the certificate details.

What does it mean when I get an e-mail rejection notification that says "Invalid/No Digital Signature on Excel Report"?

Prior to December 10, 2003, you would receive the "Invalid/No Digital Signature on Excel Report" rejection notification due to one of the following reasons:

  • The signature file was not downloaded using the right click/Save As Target option to include the correct macros and digital signatures when you downloaded the template. For more information refer to the Download Instructions on the Microsoft® Excel Templates page.
  • For Office XP (2002 version of Excel) users: you clicked on the Undo button after entering your data manually.
  • When using the Copy/Paste feature, you copied the formatting as well as the data values. Use the Special paste feature and select values only from the property sheet. The same situation occurs when you import data.
NOTE: You should always keep the template formatting intact regardless of the method you use to populate the template.

Starting December 10, 2003, the validation process has changed to accommodate template files that are missing digital signatures. If you have submitted an EWR report to NHTSA and received the "Invalid/No digital signature" rejection message, you should re-submit the report for processing.

Whose contact information should we use in the Report Info section of the template?

You may use either your primary or secondary EWR contact information that had been previously provided to NHTSA ODI.

Can I compress files before sending them to NHTSA?

Yes. For detailed information, refer to the appropriate NHTSA compendium document. These documents are available on the Compendiums page.

How do I submit data to NHTSA?

You can submit data to NHTSA using one of the following methods:

Via SFTP

All supported EWR files may be submitted using one of the Artemis Secure FTP servers. This is the recommended method. There are multiple applications that you can use to connect and transfer to the SFTP servers. You must however, use the Secure Shell (SSH) 2 protocol. SSH (Secure Shell) is a program to log into another computer over a network, to execute commands in a remote machine, and to move files from one machine to another. It provides strong authentication and secure communications over unsecured channels. It is intended as a replacement for rlogin, rsh, and rcp.

The following products have been tested for use with Artemis. They have been selected as examples to show users the process for uploading files to the SFTP server. You can use any SSH2-based tool that your organization desires.

  1. WinSCP is a free graphical user interface (GUI) tool. If you would like more information, click on this link: http://winscp.sourceforge.net/. If you would like information about using WinSCP, refer to EWR Data File Transfer Using WinSCP.
  2. PuTTY Secure File Transfer Protocol (PSFTP) is a command line tool. This is a free product available at the following sites: If you would like more information about psftp.exe, click on the following link: http://www.putty.org/ For information about downloading and using psftp, please refer to EWR File Transfer Using PSFTP.

Via the NHTSA ODI Web Site

Equipment and Low Volume Vehicle Death and Injury EWR Data may also be submitted through data entry applications available through the NHTSA ODI web site.

NOTE: Use the data entry applications to enter a maximum of 250 records. You must enter all records in a single session. If you have more than 250 records, you should submit them via the SFTP server.

Via E-mail

EWR Data files that are less than a specific size (1 MB) may be e-mailed to ODI at odi.ewr@dot.gov, Phone (202) 366-3348. However, the submitter should be advised that this method of submission is not secure as the information will be transmitted as plain text. Also, there is an inherent delay of processing using this method.

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Connecting to the SFTP Servers

Last Updated: March 29, 2004

How do I know which server to use to submit my EWR data?

  • If you are submitting aggregate, Death and Injury, or SSV data, the DNS name for the SFTP server is ARTSFTP.ODI.NHTSA.DOT.GOV.
  • If you are submitting field reports, the DNS name for the Field Report SFTP server is ARTFRSFTP.ODI.NHTSA.DOT.GOV.
NOTE: If you send your file to the wrong SFTP server (for example, you submit an aggregate data file to the field report server), your submission will be rejected.

Where do I go to get information about FTP'ing files?

There are many products with a variety of features that can be used to upload files to the SFTP server. You can use any SSH2-based tool that your organization desires.

NOTE: For security reasons, we do not support shell access to the servers.

The two products discussed here have been selected simply to show the average user the process for uploading a file to our SFTP server. WinSCP is a graphical User Interface (GUI) tool. The PuTTY Secure File Transfer Protocol (PSFTP) client is a command line tool.

If you want more information about these tools, use the following URLs:

Once you have selected a tool, you can use the following links to see examples of the procedures you will need to use to upload a file to the SFTP server:

Can I do file transfers from different computers?

Yes. As long as you run through the login process again and have access to the server, you can log in from a different computer to initiate the transfer each time. The Artemis Secure FTP (SFTP) servers are available for login from the public Internet. You can reach the system from any Internet-connected client. You still need to have an SSH 2 client and valid login credentials to log in.

Why am I getting a "Password Incorrect" error?

There are two possible reasons why this message is appearing:

  1. You typed in the password incorrectly. Check your password and re-enter it correctly. Capital letters and special characters all are significant.
  2. If you entered your password correctly, you could be seeing the "password incorrect" error message because your account has been locked due to excessive login attempts (if you try to log in more than 3 times). Please call the Manufacturers' EWR Help Desk at (202) 366-3348 and explain the error.

I'm configured to bypass our firewall, but I'm still getting a "Not Authorized" message.

Is your local firewall load balanced? Can you connect to other SSH servers? Your firewall administrator can help answer questions associated with connectivity issues. TCP Port 22 will need to be opened in your firewall to permit SSH and SFTP traffic.

I'm connected to the SFTP server but I do not see the file folders.

Make sure that you are connecting using the SFTP client, not the SSH client. Different SSH and SFTP clients have different methods of connection. Make sure that you connect with SFTP to transfer files.

I cannot connect to the server.

Check the following:

  1. Check with your local desktop and network/firewall administrators to determine if the Network Address Translation (NAT), PROXY, or a firewall is causing the problem.
  2. Connect to an SSH 2 server elsewhere on the Internet to determine if your SSH 2 client is functioning.
  3. Ask your network administrator to perform a test from an external PC using an ISP to determine if your issue is local or remote.
  4. If you are unable to reach the server for a login after performing the previous steps, please have your network administrator call the Manufacturers' EWR Help Desk with the problem details.

What is the port and directory structure for data submission?

Each manufacturer will have an EWR folder on the SFTP server. This folder will have the manufacturer's account name and will be the manufacturer's root map.

NOTE: You are to deposit all of your EWR files in this folder only. Do not create subfolders and place files in there as they will be deleted and the files will not be processed.

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Data Format Questions

Last Updated: August 11, 2003

What is the correct format for the Date field? Is it YYYY-MM-DD or MM/DD/YYYY?

The correct format is YYYY-MM-DD. Other date formats will be rejected.

Is there a file size restriction for data files?

Data files should not exceed 2GB in size.

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Historical Data

Last Updated: August 11, 2003

How many submissions of Historical Data am I supposed to make?

Manufacturers must make one submission per quarter per reporting category, starting with the third quarter of the year 2000 and ending with the second quarter of the year 2003.

NOTE: Historical data submissions cannot contain any extraneous data such as consumer complaints. If they do, they will be rejected.

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Field Reports

Last Updated: April 26, 2004

The DNS name for the field report SFTP server is ARTFRSFTP.ODI.NHTSA.DOT.GOV.

NOTE: If you send your file to the wrong SFTP server (for example, you submit an aggregate data file to the field report server), your submission will be rejected.

If a manufacturer has already prepared a field report submission, can it be submitted early?

The first electronic submission of non-dealer field reports will only be accepted after April 30, 2004 and must be successfully received by July 1, 2004. The Office of Defects Investigation would appreciate receiving notification (via odi.ewr@dot.gov) of readiness to submit from vehicle manufacturers with typical US sales populations greater than 350,000 units per year.

What is the difference between dealer and non-dealer field reports?

A dealer field report is a field report received from a dealer or authorized service facility of a manufacturer of motor vehicles or motor vehicle equipment. Non-dealer field reports are field reports received by a manufacturer from entities known to the manufacturer as owning or operating a fleet.

If I have attachments, do I need to submit them with the associated field report?

You do not have to submit attachments that are associated with a field report. You only have to indicate whether the field report does or does not have attachments. If the field report that you are submitting has attachments, you indicate this by including the letter "Y" in the field report file name. For example: MFYWIDGET1-0102-070809-00001.PDF.

If you choose to submit the attachments with your field report, you should include them with the field report in one file rather than sending separate files with separate file names.

Is there a field report template that I can use?

There is no template for field reports. You can use any of the following formats:

  • Portable Document Format (.PDF)
  • Tagged Image File Format (.TIF)
  • Text format (.TXT)
  • Microsoft® Word format (.DOC)
  • Rich Text Format (.RTF)
  • Joint Photographic Experts Group format (.JPG)
  • HyperTextMarkup Language format (.HTML)

Field report files must be contained in a Zip archive file.

Are there file naming conventions for field report attachments?

The current file naming convention applies to the field report name for the container file (e.g. 000999H041001FC.zip). For more information, refer to the Field Report Submissions page.

What does the sequence number indicate?

The sequence number is used to identify multiple field reports for Model, Platform, Model Year, and Components. The sequence number must be unique within the container file and must start with the number 00001. If you are submitting multiple field reports, the sequence numbers must be sequential. For example, if you were submitting 100 field reports, the sequence numbers would be 1 through 100. Gaps in the sequence numbers are not permitted.

Is there a file size restriction for zipped field report submissions?

There is currently no file restriction associated with submitting zipped field reports to the SFTP server. This might change in the future, but if it does, this information will be disseminated accordingly.

Can I submit hard copy versions of field reports?

Yes, you can. Each field report must have the correct field report file name either attached to it on a separate sheet or appearing in the top margin of the first page. For more information about field report file naming conventions, refer to the Field Report Submissions page.

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Data Submission Notification Status

Last Updated: August 11, 2003

How will I know that NHTSA has received my EWR files once I submit them?

There is a two-step notification process for manufacturers who submit aggregate and Death and Injury files using the SFTP server. Consult the appropriate Compendium document for a description of the notification process. For field report submissions, a notification is sent out when the file is accepted.

If you do not receive a notification within 8 hours of your submission, contact the EWR Manufacturer Help Desk, unless you submitted your EWR files via e-mail. If you used e-mail to submit your EWR files, then you should wait at least 24 hours if you submitted your files during business hours. If you submitted your files over the weekend (for example, Friday night) or a holiday, you should wait at least 72 hours.

I submitted the EWR files but have not received any notifications that they have been received/validated. How do I find out the status of my submission?

Contact the Manufacturers' EWR Help Desk. Make sure to have your EWR account information.

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Legal Interpretations

Last Updated: August 11, 2003

How do I find information regarding legal interpretations of the "Early Warning Reporting" Final Rule (49 CFR Part 579 Subpart C)?

Legal interpretations of the "Early Warning Reporting" Final Rule (49 CFR Part 579 Subpart C) can be found on the NHTSA ODI web site. To see a list of the available legal interpretations, click on Legal Interpretations in the Documents dropdown list at the top of the page. The Legal Interpretations page will appear.

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