The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA’s) hours of service (HOS) regulations dictate that if drivers can’t complete their duty within twelve hours under the 100 air-mile radius exemption that they have to take a 30-minute rest break. However, this rest break poses problems for carriers transporting hazardous materials. They can’t leave the cargo unsupervised, and attending the CMV doesn’t qualify as resting. The parking shortage also prevents drivers from finding a safe and secure area to park trucks toting hazardous material.
To address these challenges, FMCSA offered exemptions to the rule for carriers transporting specified fuels. However, propane didn’t make the initial list. This put drivers transporting petroleum-based cargo in a difficult situation. While most of them load their vehicles in the morning with the intent to finish several deliveries by the end of the day, outside circumstances can prevent this from happening.
These drivers operate commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) on interstate highways so traffic and accidents can impede their deliveries. Since they can’t leave their hazardous cargo to rest but they also can’t push beyond the 12-hour regulation, the National Propane Gas Association (NPGA) petitioned FMCSA for an amendment. The transportation agency granted the request, which will remain in effect through April 10, 2023.
Complying with FMCSA regulations is critical to remain in operation as a trucking company, but these rulings can create challenges for fleets. In this instance, the need to transport hazardous cargo safely took precedence and FMCSA issued an amendment. Cline Wood understands the risks involved with transporting hazardous materials. We can help your trucking company assess its risks and implement solutions to address them: get in touch at email@example.com.
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