Regulatory Update – Nov. 30, 2020

Update on Relevant Canadian Regulations

Transport Canada Publishes Hours-of-Service MAR
On Nov. 25, 2020, Transport Canada published a miscellaneous amendment to the regulations (MAR) that impacts the hours-of-service regulations. The changes make technical corrections and harmonize language with the Canadian Council of Motor Transport Administrators’ Standard 9, but do not change the impacts of the regulations on the regulated community.

Update on Relevant U.S. Regulations

PHMSA Publishes Final Rule Making Changes to the HMRs
On Nov. 25, 2020, the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) adopted 24 petitions for rulemaking submitted by various members of the regulated community. The changes add, revise or delete portions of the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR). The rule is effective Dec. 28.

FMCSA Publishes ICR on Motor Carrier Records Change
On Nov. 25, 2020, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) published an information collection request (ICR) on information required for a motor carrier to change its information on file with FMCSA. The ICR is necessary for the agency to process name changes, address changes and reinstatements of operating authority. Comments are due by Jan. 25, 2021.

FMCSA Requests Comments on TIA Petition for Rulemaking
Also on Nov. 25, 2020, FMCSA published a notice and request for comments on a petition from the Transportation Intermediaries Association (TIA) to rescind Title 49 CFR 371.3 (c), which requires that each party to a brokered transaction have the right to review the record of the transaction. Comments are due by Jan. 25, 2021.

FMCSA Publishes IFR on the Definitions of Agricultural Commodity, Livestock and Non-Processed Food
On Nov. 24, 2020, FMCSA published an interim final rule (IFR) changing the definitions of an agricultural commodity, livestock and non-processed food. These changes impact which motor carriers qualify for the 150-air-mile exemption for agricultural commodities and the 30-minute rest break exemption for livestock haulers. The IFR is effective Dec. 9 and comments and petitions for reconsideration are due by Dec. 24.

FMCSA Publishes Determination on Washington Meal and Rest Break Preemption Petition
On Nov. 17, 2020, FMCSA published a determination that Washington’s meal and rest break requirements have no safety benefit and are incompatible with federal regulations. The determination preempts the requirement for drivers of property-carrying commercial motor vehicles to take additional rest breaks. FMCSA made this determination in response to a petition from the Washington Trucking Association.

Update on Exemptions

Minnesota Exemption Request from CDL Standards
On Nov. 30, 2020, FMCSA published a notice and request for comments on a request from Minnesota to reconsider its application for exemption from the regulations governing commercial driver’s license (CDL) skills testing procedures and practices. Minnesota believes it can deliver CDL skills testing more efficiently in an alternative manner. It asserts that its method of delivering skills testing will maintain the testing standards enumerated by the regulations. Comments are due by Dec. 30.

FMCSA Grants J. J. Keller Windshield Mounting Exemption Request
On Nov. 24, 2020, FMCSA announced the approval of an exemption request from J. J. Keller & Associates Inc., allowing its advanced driver assistance system’s camera to be mounted lower in the windshield on commercial motor vehicles than is currently permitted. The exemption is effective Nov. 24, 2020-Nov. 24, 2025.

CVSA Active Exemption Tracker
CVSA maintains a list of active exemptions issued by FMCSA. The exemption tracker can be found at under the “Inspections” tab at the top of the page.