Regulatory Update – April 23, 2018

Update on Relevant U.S. Regulations

NHTSA Publishes Bus Emergency Exits Correction 
On April 18, 2018, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) published a correction to the §571.217 Standard No. 217 for bus emergency exits and window retention and release.

NHTSA Publishes Import Eligibility Decision Correction 
Also on April 18, 2018, NHTSA published a notice correcting an error made in its decision that certain model year (MY) 2000 East Lancashire Coachbuilders Limited Double Decker Tri-Axle buses (with Volvo B7L Chassis) that were not originally manufactured to comply with all applicable Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards (FMVSS) are eligible for importation into the United States because they have safety features that comply with, or are capable of being altered to comply with, all applicable FMVSS. The correction is being made to properly identify the subject vehicles as MY 2001 models. The original eligibility decision was effective July 30, 2015. The correction is effective April 8, 2018, and applies to any vehicle that may have been previously imported under the original eligibility decision.

FMCSA Publishes Final Rule Allowing for Electronic Signatures and Records
On April 16, 2018, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) published a final rule amending the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSRs) to allow for the use of electronic records and signatures to satisfy FMCSA’s regulatory requirements. The final rule is effective June 15, 2018.

FMCSA Announces UCR Board Meeting
Also on April 16, 2018, FMCSA announced a meeting of the Unified Carrier Registration (UCR) Plan Board of Directors on April 19, 2018. The meeting was open to the public via conference call.

NHTSA Announces Availability of Seat Belt Assembly Anchorages Research
On April 16, 2018, NHTSA published a notice announcing the availability of certain documents supplementing the agency’s March 2015 supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking (SNPRM) to amend Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 210, ‘‘Seat belt assembly anchorages.’’ The SNPRM proposed an alternative test procedure that would maintain the current FMVSS No. 210 body blocks and specify zones for the placement of the blocks at preload.

FMCSA Seeks Comment on ICR Regarding Certificate of Registration for Foreign Motor Carriers
On April 9, 2018, FMCSA published a notice and request for comment on the agency’s request to renew the information collection request (ICR) titled, ‘‘Application for Certificate of Registration for Foreign Motor Carriers and Foreign Motor Private Carriers,’’ that requires foreign (Mexico-based) for-hire and private motor carriers to file an application Form OP–2 if they wish to register to transport property only within municipalities in the United States on the U.S.-Mexico international borders or within the commercial zones. Comments are due by June 8, 2018.

Update on Exemptions

FMCSA Grants 30-Minute Rest Break Exemption for Certain Petroleum-Based Fuel Haulers
On April 9, 2018, FMCSA announced its decision to grant the National Tank Truck Carriers, Inc. (NTTC) and the Massachusetts Motor Transport Association, Inc. (MMTA) an exemption from the requirement that drivers of commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) take a 30-minute rest break. The exemption is limited to CMV drivers engaged in the transportation of specified types of petroleum-based fuels who would otherwise have to observe the rest break when their duty day unexpectedly exceeds 12 hours. The exemption is effective April 9, 2018-April 10, 2023.

CVSA Active Exemption Tracker
CVSA maintains a list of active exemptions issued by FMCSA. Members can access the document by logging into their CVSA member portal and clicking on the “Exemptions” tab at the top of the page.