Selected COVID-19 and trucking industry news that may impact your business.
As of May 14, 2020:
FMCSA Extends Emergency Declaration Through June 14, 2020.
Scopelitis Transportation Consulting, Overdrive
On May 13, 2020 the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration granted an extension to the existing Expanded Emergency Declaration citing the continued Presidentially declared COVID-19 national emergency which remains in place. The declaration exempts motor carriers and drivers hauling nine different categories of goods in direct support of the emergency relief effort from parts 390-399 of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations, including the Hours of Service rules. The declaration specifically notes that drivers and carriers must operate in accordance with local laws and regulations and that drivers may not, and motor carriers must not allow drivers to, operate while fatigued. Motor carriers must still comply with drug and alcohol testing rules and must notify FMCSA within 24 hours if a driver is involved in a crash while operating under the declaration. Driver and motor carriers currently subject to an out-of-service order are not eligible to use the exemption. The declaration ends when the national emergency ends or June 14, 2020, whichever is sooner.
Loads under the exemption include:
- Medical supplies and equipment related to the testing, diagnosis and treatment of COVID-19.
- Supplies related to preventing the spread of coronavirus, like masks, gloves, hand sanitizer, soap and disinfectants.
- Food, paper products and other groceries for emergency restocking of distribution centers and stores.
- Precursor raw materials like paper, plastic or alcohol
- Equipment, supplies and persons meant to provide temporary housing and quarantine facilities.
- Personnel to provide medical or other emergency services.
- Liquefied gases used in refrigeration and cooling systems.
FMCSA announces the anticipated Hours-of-Service Final Rule
American Trucking Associations
Earlier this morning, FMCSA hosted an industry phone-call announcing the anticipated Hours-of-Service Final Rule. The final rule follows the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) that was published by the Agency last August and is expected to be published in the federal register in the coming week.
The following four changes have been incorporated into this Final Rule:
|Short-Haul Operations||· Extends drivers’ maximum on-duty period from 12 to 14 hours;
· Extends the air-mile radius within which the driver may operate from 100 air miles to 150 air miles.
|Adverse Driving Conditions||· Modifies the adverse driving conditions exception by extending, by 2 hours, the maximum on-duty window during which driving is permitted;|
|30-Minute Break||· Requires a 30-minute break after 8 consecutive hours of driving time have elapsed;
· Allows a break to be taken in an on-duty, not-driving status.
|Sleeper Berth Exception||· Allows drivers to split their required 10-hours off duty into two periods: an 8 and 2 split or a 7 and 3 split, either off duty or in the sleeper berth;
· Neither period counts against the driver’s 14-hour driving window.
The agency’s previously proposed split-duty day was not among the changes FMCSA announced today. The Final Rule will take effect 120 days from the publication in the Federal Register. ATA expects it to be posted sometime next week.
OOIDA calls for an end to COVID overweight exemption
In a letter filed to Department of Transportation head Elaine Chao, the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association has asked that DOT work with states to end the waivers for overweight loads, which were put in place as the COVID-19 pandemic reached the U.S. in March. Read More
Ports laying groundwork for post-coronavirus business
Ports around the globe will have to change the way they do business in a post-pandemic world. Read More