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Regulatory Update – September 2, 2022

Update on Relevant U.S. Regulations

FMCSA Publishes Rule Reducing UCR Fees
On Sept 1, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) published a final rule reducing the Unified Carrier Registration (UCR) Plan and Agreement registration fees for registration year 2023 and subsequent years. The final rule is effective Sept. 1, 2022. Petitions for reconsideration are due by Oct. 3.

FMCSA Announces UCR Plan Audit Subcommittee Meeting
Also on Sept 1, FMCSA announced a meeting of the UCR Plan Audit Subcommittee. The meeting, scheduled for Sept. 8 from noon to 2 p.m. eastern, will be open to the public and can be accessed via conference call or virtual platforms.

NHTSA Seeks Comments on Drug Recognition Expert (DRE) Programs ICR
On Aug. 31, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) published a notice requesting comments on a proposed information collection request (ICR) titled “Strategies to Improve DRE Officers’ Performance and Law Enforcement Agencies’ DRE Programs.” Comments are due by Oct. 31.

NHTSA Extends Heavy Vehicle Crash Avoidance Systems ICR
On Aug. 30, NHTSA published a notice requesting comments on an ICR titled “Heavy Vehicle Crash Avoidance Systems.” The initial ICR was originally delayed due to COVID-19 and an extension is necessary to continue the data collection. Comments are now due by Sept. 29.

NHTSA Requests Comments on MMUCC ICR
On Aug. 29, NHTSA published a notice requesting comments on an ICR titled “Evaluation of the Model Minimum Uniform Crash Criteria (MMUCC) Program.” Comments are due by Sept. 28.

PHMSA Extends Use of Electronic Hazard Communication Comment Period
On Aug. 29, the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) published a notice extending the comment period for the agency’s July 11 request for comments on the potential use of electronic communication as an alternative to the agency’s current physical documentation requirements for hazard communication. Comments are now due by Oct. 24.

Update on Exemptions

FMCSA Requests Comments on Flat Top Transport HOS Exemption Request
On Sept. 1, FMCSA published a notice requesting comments on an exemption request from Flat Top Transport seeking an exemption from the hours-of-service (HOS) regulations. Flat Top Transport requests a four-month exemption for “immediate and emergency delivery of dry and bulk food grade products to locations that supply stores and distribution centers nationally.” Comments are due by Oct.  3.

NHTSA Requests Comments on School Bus Inconsequential Noncompliance Petition
On Aug. 30, NHTSA published a notice requesting comments on a petition for decision of inconsequential noncompliance from Daimler Trucks North America (DTNA). DTNA has determined that certain model year 2019–2022 Thomas Built school buses do not fully comply with Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 217, Bus Emergency Exits and Window Retention and Release. Comments are due by Sept. 29.

FMCSA Seeks Comments on Hair Testing Exemption Request
On Aug. 24, FMCSA published a notice requesting comments on a petition from the Trucking Alliance seeking an exemption for its motor carrier members to amend the definition of actual knowledge to include the employer’s knowledge of a driver’s positive hair test, which would require such results be reported to the FMCSA Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse and to inquiring carriers. FMCSA notes that the agency lacks the statutory authority to grant the request until the Department of Health and Human Services has taken action on its own hair testing rule. However, the agency is requesting public comment on the application, as required by statute. Comments are due by Sept. 23.

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