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Regulatory Update – March 12, 2018

Update on Relevant U.S. Regulations

EPA Seeking Comment on Proposed Approval of TRU Waste Characterization Program
On March 5, 2018, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a notice of availability and request for comments on the agency’s proposed approval of the Transuranic (TRU) Waste Characterization Program at Idaho National Laboratory’s Advanced Mixed Waste Treatment Project. The TRU waste characterization program changes, particularly to the Acceptable Knowledge process, referred to as ‘‘enhanced AK’’, address deficiencies identified by the Department of Energy as among the root causes of the February 2014 radiation release at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP). Comments are due by April 19, 2018.

NHTSA Hosts Public Meeting on Drugged Driving
On March 1, 2018, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) announced a public meeting to address the issue of combating drugged driving. The meeting will be held March 15, 2018.

NHTSA Hosts Public Meeting Regarding Research Portfolio
Also on March 1, 2018, NHTSA announced a public meeting where the agency’s Vehicle Safety Research and Behavioral Safety Research offices will present information on activities related to priority research programs in vehicle and behavioral safety, including a focused overview session on NHTSA’s research in Automated Driving Systems. The meeting will be held March 16, 2018.

NHTSA Extends Automated Vehicles Comment Period
On Feb. 28, 2018, NHTSA published a notice extending the comment period for the agency’s open docket item on Automated Driving Systems. The docket, Removing Regulatory Barriers for Vehicles with Automated Driving System, was originally scheduled to close March 5, 2018. Comments are now due by March 20, 2018.

Update on Exemptions

ATA Seeks Automobile Transporter Warning Flag Exemption
On Feb. 27, 2018, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) published a notice and request for comment on an exemption request the agency received from the the Automobile Carriers Conference (ACC) of the American Trucking Associations (ATA) requesting that motor carriers operating stinger steered automobile transporter equipment be relieved from the requirement to place warning flags on projecting loads of new motor vehicles. ATA argues that the reflex reflectors that are required to be installed on the new motor vehicles being transported, in conjunction with the various marking and conspicuity requirements required on the trailer transporting the new vehicles, provide a level of safety that is greater than that achieved by the warning flags required by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations. Comments are due by March 29, 2018.

FMCSA Denies G4S ELD Exemption
Also on Feb. 27, 2018, FMCSA issued a notice denying a request from G4S Secure Solutions for an exemption from the electronic logging device (ELD) requirement. CVSA filed comments in opposition to this exemption request.

FMCSA Provides Additional Guidance Regarding ELDs and Ag Exemptions
In late February and early March, FMCSA published updates to the ELD section of the agency’s website, providing additional clarity regarding the ELD requirement and existing agricultural exemptions. This includes information providing clarification on when farm, ranch and agriculture haulers are subject to FMCSA’s rules and regulations.

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.

CVSA Letters, Petitions and Comments to Rulemakings

CVSA Submits Comments Regarding Old Dominion ELD Exemption Request 
On March 20, 2018, CVSA submitted comments to FMCSA in opposition to Old Dominion Freight Line Inc.’s request for an exemption that would allow the company to install ELDs running automatic on-board recording device (AOBRD) software in commercial motor vehicles added to the company’s fleet for up to one year from the Dec. 18, 2017, ELD compliance date.

CVSA Submits Comments Regarding SikhsPAC/North American Punjabiz Trucker Association ELD Exemption Request
On Feb. 26, 2018, CVSA submitted comments to FMCSA in opposition to a request from SikhsPAC and the North American Punjabiz Trucker Association for an exemption from the ELD requirements.