FMCSA extends HOS waiver through February amid COVID-19 concerns

From Transport Topics.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration extended regulatory waivers related to truckers’ allowable work time, citing public health concerns.

The waiver associated with commercial drivers’ maximum driving time for property-carrying vehicles was extended through Feb. 28.

FMCSA explained, “although the number of COVID-19 cases began to decline in the U.S. following widespread introduction of vaccinations, persistent issues arising out of COVID-19 continue to affect the U.S. including impacts on supply chains and the need to ensure capacity to respond to variants and potential rises in infections.”

“Therefore, a continued exemption is needed to support direct emergency assistance for some supply chains,” FMCSA stated in announcing the extension to the regulatory waiver, which took effect Dec. 1. “This extension of the modified emergency declaration addresses national emergency conditions that create a need for immediate transportation of essential supplies and provides necessary relief from the [Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations] for motor carriers and drivers.”

Specifically, the hours-of-service waiver is applicable to commercial drivers and carriers tasked with directly providing relief services related to essential services, medical care and supplies that respond to COVID-19.

According to FMCSA, the waiver is limited to the transportation of livestock, as well as livestock feed, and medical supplies for the treatment of COVID-19.

It also is limited to vaccines, ancillary supplies and kits for the administration of vaccines, and supplies and equipment deemed necessary for public safety. Additionally, it pertains to masks, gloves, hand sanitizer, soap and disinfectants. It also pertains to food, certain paper products, emergency restocking of distribution hubs, and gasoline, diesel, jet fuel and ethyl alcohol.

See the complete article online at Transport Topics.