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Regulatory Update – Feb. 7, 2020

Update on Relevant U.S. Regulations

FCC Publishes Proposed Rule on the 5.9 GHz Spectrum
On Feb. 6, 2020, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) published a proposed rule to permit unlicensed devices to operate in a portion of the 5.9 GHz spectrum. The full 5.9 GHz spectrum is currently allocated to communication of vehicle safety technology. Comments are due by March 9.

OST Requests Comments on AV 4.0
On Feb. 6, 2020, the Office of the Secretary of Transportation (OST) at the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) published a request for comments on the agency’s document, “Ensuring American Leadership in Automated Vehicle Technologies: Automated Vehicles 4.0” (AV 4.0). AV 4.0 outlines the agency’s outlook and plan for addressing vehicles with automated driving systems. Comments are due by April 2.

FMCSA Extends Entry-Level Driver Training Compliance Date
On Feb. 4, 2020, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) published an interim final rule and request for comments announcing a delay in the compliance date for the entry-level driver training rule to Feb. 7, 2022. The delay is to allow FMCSA additional time to complete development of the training provider registry. Comments are due by Mar. 20 and petitions for reconsideration are due by Mar. 5.

FMCSA Requests Comments on Highway Routing of Hazardous Materials
On Jan. 27, 2020, FMCSA published a notice and request for comments on an information collection request 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 Feb. 26.

Update on Exemptions

FMCSA Requests Comments on Sleeper Berth Exemption Renewal Request
On Jan. 30, 2020, FMCSA published a notice and request for comments on an application from McKee Foods Transportation LLC to renew their existing sleeper berth exemption. The exemption allows the company’s team drivers to meet the requirement for 10 consecutive hours off duty with two sleeper berth periods totaling 10 hours as long as neither period is less than 3 hours. Comments are due by March 2.

FMCSA Requests Comments on Rear-Vision Mirrors Exemption Request
Also on Jan. 30, 2020, FMCSA published a notice and request for comments on an exemption request from Robert Bosch LLC and Mekra Lang North America LLC to allow motor carriers to operate commercial motor vehicles equipped with the company’s digital mirror camera monitoring system instead of two rear-vision mirrors as is required by Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations. Comments are due by March 2.

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 Submits Comments on Great Dane Application for Inconsequential Noncompliance
On Jan. 31, 2020, CVSA submitted comments to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) on an application of inconsequential noncompliance from Great Dane LLC. Great Dane determined that certain model year 2002-2006 Great Dane dry freight trailers do not comply with Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 223, Rear impact guards, and FMVSS No. 224, Rear impact protection. The trailers do not have the required information printed on the rear impact guard certification labels but otherwise meet the physical requirements outlined in the FMVSS. CVSA’s comments support Great Dane’s request and encourage NHTSA to grant CVSA’s related petition to remove the rear impact guard certification label requirement.

CVSA Sends Secretary Chao Letter on 5.9 GHz Spectrum
On Jan. 28, 2020, CVSA sent U.S. DOT Secretary Elaine Chao a letter thanking her for her leadership on preserving the 5.9 GHz spectrum. The letter outlines the benefits of maintaining the spectrum for transportation safety technology and expresses the Alliance’s appreciation for Sec. Chao’s continued efforts to prevent a portion of the spectrum from being released for use by unlicensed users.