Overweight divisible load permits for transportation of emergency relief supplies

View the update and clarification post on this topic.

In response to the public health emergency, the Connecticut Department of Transportation has issued a declaration allowing for divisible load permits for up to 125% of the current legal limit for a given wheel spacing and axle configuration. Such permits are only available for the transportation of emergency relief supplies and equipment.

Emergency relief supplies and equipment include, but are not necessarily limited to:

  1. Medical supplies and equipment related to the testing, diagnosis and treatment of COVID-19
  2. Supplies and equipment necessary for community safety, sanitation, and prevention of community transmission of COVID-19
  3. Food, paper products and other groceries for emergency restocking of distribution centers or stores
  4. Immediate precursor raw materials – such as paper, plastic or alcohol – that are required and to be used for the manufacture of essential items
  5. Fuel
  6. Equipment, supplies and persons necessary to establish and manage temporary housing, quarantine, and isolation facilities related to COVD-19

Note: Please be advised that permits are required. ConnDOT may issue single-trip permits to applicants. The permits must be kept in the truck. Members should consider having drivers keep a letter on company letterhead stating that they are carrying emergency relief supplies. Carriers using such permits should ensure that the permitted load is in compliance with the permit’s route restrictions and other parameters.

A copy of the declaration from ConnDOT is available as a downloadable PDF.

Applications for Oversize / Overweight permits are processed through the Connecticut Commercial Vehicle Operations (CVO) Web Portal.

For specific questions regarding these permits, contact dot.osowpermits@ct.gov.

Tips for the trucking industry to stay healthy and safe

During this public health emergency, the trucking industry is considered “essential” and may continue to operate during Governor Lamont’s “stay at home” Executive Order. While the industry is working, we must do everything possible to protect the health and safety of member employees. Accordingly, MTAC is sharing some practices being used by members to maximize the health and safety of not only drivers, but all employees.

Members may consider the following:

  • Implore employees to stay home if sick
  • If employees have symptoms such as fever or respiratory issues, require them to seek medical evaluation immediately
  • If any drivers develop symptoms, deep clean their truck extensively with a cleaner utilizing personal protective equipment
  • Ensure drivers are getting the rest they need to maintain their own health
  • Distribute anti-bacterial wipes to each driver to carry with them to wipe their cabs, equipment, door handles, and trailer handles regularly
  • Ask drivers to stay in their truck as much as possible while on the job
  • Suggest drivers bring their own lunch, coffee, etc. to refrain from stopping at stores in order to minimize exposure
  • Encourage drivers to stay six feet away from others when they make store deliveries, if possible
  • Ask customers to eliminate the need for physical signatures whenever possible
  • If a signature is required, drivers should use their own pens for signing, not share a pen
  • Drivers should wear gloves as much as possible, i.e. at fuel pumps, while making deliveries, etc.
  • Clean and disinfect all frequently touched surfaces
  • Have dispatchers wear gloves when receiving and processing paperwork
  • Sanitize e-jacks and trailer doors on a continual basis
  • Clean interior bay doors and related equipment/buttons on a continual basis

Best wishes to all MTAC members during these difficult times.

Commercial trucking is essential business, can continue to operate

Governor Lamont has issued an additional Executive Order, which further clarifies what businesses are “essential,” and therefore exempt from the “stay at home” order. “Commercial trucking” is clearly defined in the latest Executive Order as an essential business. Additionally, construction, including commercial and residential, are considered essential. There are many other kinds of businesses considered “essential” under the Executive Order. As a result, all MTAC members are allowed to continue to operate.

An overview of the Executive Order 7H – Business Exemptions for Coronavirus – has been posted online. The Executive Order is also available as a PDF online.

Contact MTAC’s office if you have any questions.

Connecticut Resources

Connecticut Executive Order on essential business

Governor Ned Lamont has issued a “Stay at Home” executive order, mandating that employees of “non-essential” businesses stay home. Importantly, the trucking industry is considered “essential” and is exempt from the executive order.

A copy of the Executive Order is now available online.

MTAC members may be particularly interested in the following notes regarding specific kinds of businesses that are considered essential:

  • essential infrastructure, including utilities, wastewater and drinking water, telecommunications, airports and transportation infrastructure
  • essential retail, including grocery stores and big-box stores or wholesale clubs, provided they also sell groceries
  • essential services including trash and recycling collection, hauling, and processing, mail and shipping services
  • vendors of essential services and goods necessary to maintain the safety, sanitation and essential operations of residences or other essential businesses, including pest control and landscaping services

Contact MTAC if you have any questions.

Connecticut DMV operational update

The Connecticut DMV has issued a number of updates during the past week regarding their operations, and registration extensions.

View the updated information on this DMV website.

FMCSA FAQs concerning Emergency Declaration

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has a frequently asked questions (FAQ) section related to their updated Emergency Declaration issued on March 19, 2020.

The FAQs and responses to those questions are available online, and also as a downloadable PDF.

Workforce development grant opportunity

MTAC is working with Capital Workforce Partners on opportunities for members to apply for workforce development grants. The National Dislocated Workers Program is a $5.8 million state-wide initiative that offers training and job placement support for dislocated workers in several fields, including transportation and logistics.

The dislocated workers grant helps employers find highly qualified talent, develop in-house training capacity, and offset the costs associated with onboard new employees.

Qualified employers could see benefits such as wage reimbursements of 50 to 75% for 6 months of on-the-job training, up to $20,000 per candidate, talent referrals / recruitment support. Capital Workforce assures interested parties that the employer makes all hiring decisions.

For more information, contact Benjamin Clapp, Business Services Representative with Capital Workforce by calling him at (860) 656-2548 or emailing bclapp@capitalworkforce.org.

Please view this flyer for the workforce development program.

Connecticut DMV credentials extension

From the Connecticut DMV.

A 90-day extension for expiring DMV credentials.

  • The Department of Motor Vehicles – acting on the recent Declaration signed by Governor Ned Lamont – now offers an extension period to Connecticut residents with expiring credentials.
  • Eligible DMV credentials that expire between March 10, 2020 and June 8, 2020 are automatically covered by this extension. No late fees will be assessed for eligible credentials.
  • The extension includes all Connecticut driver’s licenses, learner’s permits, and identity cards.
  • The extension is effective immediately.

The extension is intended to help safeguard the general public by providing customers with renewal options.

More information available at the DMV’s website.

FMCSA – Expanded Emergency Declaration

From FMCSA.

This Emergency Declaration provides regulatory relief for commercial motor vehicle operations providing direct assistance in support of emergency relief efforts related to the COVID-19 outbreaks, including transportation to meet immediate needs for:

  1. medical supplies and equipment related to the testing, diagnosis and treatment of COVID-19;
  2. supplies and equipment necessary for community safety, sanitation, and prevention of community transmission of COVID-19 such as masks, gloves, hand sanitizer, soap and disinfectants;
  3. food, paper products and other groceries for emergency restocking of distribution centers or stores;
  4. immediate precursor raw materials-such as paper, plastic or alcohol-that are required and to be used for the manufacture of items in categories (1), (2) or (3);
  5. fuel;
  6. equipment, supplies and persons necessary to establish and manage temporary housing, quarantine, and isolation facilities related to COVID-19;
  7. persons designated by Federal, State or local authorities for medical, isolation, or quarantine purposes; and
  8. persons necessary to provide other medical or emergency services, the supply of which may be affected by the COVID-19 response. Direct assistance does not include routine commercial deliveries, including mixed loads with a nominal quantity of qualifying emergency relief added to obtain the benefits of this emergency declaration.

Direct assistance terminates when a driver or commercial motor vehicle is used in interstate commerce to transport cargo or provide services that are not in support of emergency relief efforts related to the COVID-19 outbreaks or when the motor carrier dispatches a driver or commercial motor vehicle to another location to begin operations in commerce. 49 CFR § 390.23(b).

Upon termination of direct assistance to emergency relief efforts related to the COVID-19 outbreaks, the motor carrier and driver are subject to the requirements of 49 CFR Parts 390 through 399, except that a driver may return empty to the motor carrier’s terminal or the driver’s normal work reporting location without complying with Parts 390 through 399.

See the complete post from FMCSA online.

Coronavirus Resource Center

From MTAC partner Wilson Elser.

The rapid spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) is imperiling the health of countless thousands, wreaking havoc on global commerce, hobbling local communities and paralyzing entire countries. The impact on the insurance industry is as yet unknown, but is certain to be lasting and profound. Related claims reporting and handling will no doubt accelerate at unprecedented levels in the coming months and, likely, years.

As a national leading litigation firm, we’re prepared to help defend impacted businesses and insurance carriers. Wilson Elser’s Coronavirus Resource Center is designed to provide the most current, accurate and incisive information regarding the insurance implications of the outbreak. It includes all related content generated by our attorneys and focuses particularly on Employment & Labor, Crisis Management, Catastrophic Casualty, Healthcare, Hospitality, Insurance Coverage, Business Interruption and Risk Analysis & Mitigation.

We invite you to visit frequently and to communicate with any of our attorneys, who will be available to help you find answers or assist you as the virus and its consequences play out.

See more information from Wilson Elser online.