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Regulatory Update – Nov. 15, 2019

Update on Relevant U.S. Regulations

FMCSA Requests Comments on Renewal of Designation of Agent ICR
On Nov. 15, 2019, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) published a notice and request for comments on the renewal of an information collection request (ICR) to collect the designation of agent information from motor carriers, brokers and freight forwarders. The ICR allows FMCSA to identify an official primary point of contact for each registered motor carrier, broker and freight forwarder. Comments are due by Dec. 16.

PHMSA Publishes Updates on Special Permits
On Nov. 14, 2019, the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) published updates on special permit applications:

FMCSA Requests Comments on Rescission of No-Defect DVIR Requirement for Passenger-Carrying CMVs
On Nov. 12, 2019, FMCSA requested comments on a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) that would rescind the requirement that operators of passenger-carrying commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) submit, and motor carriers maintain, driver-vehicle inspection reports (DVIR) when a driver has not identified any defects on the DVIR. Comments are due by Jan. 13, 2020.

FMCSA Requests Comments on Hazardous Materials Safety Permits ICR
On Nov. 7, 2019, FMCSA published a notice and request for comments on the revision and renewal of an ICR that is necessary for the collection of applications for hazardous materials safety permits. Comments are due by Jan. 6, 2020.

FMCSA Requests Comments on Medication Form ICR
On Nov. 6, 2019, FMCSA published a notice and request for comments on an ICR to allow certified medical examiners to collect information on prescription medication use when evaluating the medical fitness of CMV operators. Comments are due by Dec. 6.

Update on Exemptions

FMCSA Requests Comments on Palmetto State Armory Short-Haul Exemption Request
On Nov. 14, 2019, FMCSA published a notice and request for comments on an exemption request from Palmetto State Armory to allow its drivers to extend the 100 air-mile record of duty status exemption to 150 air miles. Comments are due by Dec. 16.

NHTSA Grants Hemphill Petition for Decision of Inconsequential Noncompliance
On Nov. 14, 2019, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) announced the granting of Hemphill Brothers Leasing Company’s petition for decision of inconsequential noncompliance. Hemphill requested an exemption from the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 208, Occupant crash protection, that requires side-facing seats on motorcoaches be equipped with seat belts that have lap and shoulder belts. NHTSA provided Hemphill with an exemption to allow side-facing seats in motorcoaches manufactured by the company between Nov. 14, 2019-Nov. 15, 2021, to be equipped with lap belts only.

FMCSA Denies Joint Hours-of-Service Exemption Application
On Nov. 12, 2019, FMCSA announced the denial of a joint application from HEPACO LLC, Heritage Environmental Services LLC, Lewis Environmental Inc. and Moran Environmental Recovery from certain hours-of-service provisions for drivers engaged in providing direct assistance in actual and potential environmental emergencies. The application requested that drivers be permitted an 18 and a half hour on-duty period.

NHTSA Requests Comments on Petition of Inconsequential Noncompliance from Great Dane
On Nov. 7, 2019, NHTSA published a notice and request for comments on a petition of inconsequential noncompliance from Great Dane LLC. Great Dane determined that certain model year 2019 Great Dane Freedom Platform trailers do not comply with FMVVS No. 223, Rear impact guards, and FMVSS No. 224, Rear impact protection. The trailers do not have the required rear impact guard certification labels. Comments are due by Dec. 9.

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 PTS Worldwide Sleeper Berth Exemption Request
On Nov. 15, 2019, CVSA submitted comments to an exemption request from PTS Worldwide Inc. seeking additional flexibility for splitting sleeper berth time. CVSA commented that FMCSA should complete the originally planned split-sleeper-berth pilot program to collect data on the safety impacts of this request before making a determination.