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FMCSA’s nationwide Hours of Service waiver extended


The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has issued another extension of an Emergency Declaration for truckers hauling certain supplies during the Coronavirus pandemic.

On May 13, the FMCSA announced that they would once again extend the Hours of Service regulation waiver through June 14, 2020.

The initial Hours of Service (HOS) waiver was issued on March 13 and was set to expire on April 12. It was then extended through May 15.

The waiver applies to drivers who are providing “direct assistance” in hauling pandemic relief supplies, including:

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. Liquefied gases to be used in refrigeration or cooling systems.

7. Equipment, supplies and persons necessary to establish and manage temporary housing, quarantine, and isolation facilities related to COVID-19

8. Persons designated by Federal, State or local authorities for medical, isolation, or quarantine purposes

9. Persons necessary to provide other medical or emergency services, the supply of which may be affected by the COVID-19 response.  

The FMCSA points out that “direct assistance” doesn’t include routine commercial deliveries, including mixed loads with a nominal quantity of qualifying emergency relief added to obtain the benefits of this emergency declaration.

The waiver does not provide drivers with exemption or relief from speeding and traffic regulations, controlled substance and alcohol uses and testing requirements, insurance requirements, hazmat requirements, or size and weight requirements.

Additionally, the FMCSA says that the waiver does not give carriers the right to compel a fatigued driver to operate. A driver who tells their employer that they are fatigued must be given 10 consecutive hours of rest before returning to duty.

For more information on the waiver extension, please click here.


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