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Regulatory Update – Aug. 23, 2019

Update on Relevant U.S. Regulations

FMCSA Requests Comments on Hours-of-Service NPRM
On Aug. 22, 2019, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) requested comments on a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to amend the hours-of-service regulations. The proposed rule would allow drivers to satisfy the 30-minute rest break requirement with on-duty-not-driving time, allow sleeper-berth time to be split into two periods, allow extension of the 14-hour driving window by up to three hours if the driver takes a corresponding break, allow extension of the 14-hour driving window by up to two hours during adverse driving conditions and extend the short-haul exception from 12 to 14 hours and 100 air-miles to 150 air-miles. Comments are due by Oct. 7.

FMCSA Requests Comments on MCSAP Formula NPRM
Also on Aug. 22, 2019, FMCSA requested comments on an NPRM to amend the Motor Carrier Safety Assistance Program (MCSAP) requirements. As required by the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act, the proposed rule would amend the MCSAP allocation formula based on recommendations by the MCSAP Formula Working Group, require states to adopt a 3-year commercial vehicle safety plan and reorganize the agency’s related regulations. Comments are due by Oct. 7.

FMCSA Announces Hours-of-Service NPRM Public Listening Sessions
On Aug. 20, 2019, FMCSA announced two public listening sessions on the proposed changes to the hours-of-service regulations included in the agency’s recent NPRM. The first listening session is being held on Aug. 23, 2019 in Dallas, Texas. The second listening session will be held at the U.S. Department of Transportation headquarters in Washington, D.C. with more details published on a later date.

FMCSA Publishes Final Rule on the Lease and Interchange of Passenger Carrier Vehicles
On Aug. 14, 2019, FMCSA published a final rule on the lease and interchange of passenger carrier vehicles. The final rule amends the rule published on May 27, 2015, by narrowing the applicability through the exclusion of certain contracts and agreements. The final rule is effective Oct. 15.

FMCSA Requests Comments on ICR on Highway Routing of Hazardous Materials
On Aug. 13, 2019, FMCSA requested comments on an information collection request (ICR) on highway routing of hazardous materials. The collection gathers information from states that is used to determine designated and restricted routes for hazardous materials. Comments are due by Oct. 11.

PHMSA Publishes Updates on Special Permits
On Aug. 12, 2019, the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) published updates on special permit applications:

Update on Exemptions

NHTSA Publishes Notice of Petitions from Mack and Volvo
On Aug. 21, 2019, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) published a notice and request for comments on petitions for decision of inconsequential noncompliance from Mack Trucks Inc. and Volvo Trucks North America. Mack and Volvo have determined that model year 2014-2019 trucks do not comply with Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 101, Controls and Displays. The low air pressure indicator on these commercial motor vehicles does not display the words “Brake Air” as is required by FMVSS No. 101. Comments are due by Sept. 20.

NHTSA Grants Michelin Petition for Decision of Inconsequential Noncompliance
On Aug. 13, 2019, NHTSA announced the granting of Michelin North America Inc.’s petition for decision of inconsequential noncompliance. Michelin determined that the tread wear indicators on certain XZL brand tires do not fully comply with FMVSS No. 119, New Pneumatic Tires for Motor Vehicles with a GVWR of more than 10,000 lbs. and Motorcycles. NHTSA has determined that this noncompliance does not negatively impact safety.

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

CVSA Letters, Petitions and Comments to Rulemakings

CVSA Requests Hours-of-Service NPRM Comment Period Extension
On Aug. 22, 2019, CVSA submitted a request to extend the hours-of-service NPRM comment period by 45 days. In the request, CVSA outlines the need for more than the originally provided 45 days to adequately gather input from stakeholders.