The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is planning to issue new guidance on “yard moves” and how they should be logged by commercial vehicle drivers.

On January 4, the FMCSA issued a notice of proposed regulatory guidance and a request for public comment on how yard moves should be defined and logged as part of a driver’s records of duty status.

The purpose of the proposed guidance is to provide more clarity on the types of properties that can be considered a “yard” where drivers should record their moves as “on-duty not driving time.”

From the FMCSA:

FMCSA proposes to clarify when a driver may record time performing “yard moves” as on-duty not driving time by providing examples of properties that qualify as yards. Therefore, the movement of a CMV on these properties would qualify as a “yard move” and be recorded as on-duty not driving time.

According to the FMCSA’s proposed guidance, the types of properties that could be considered yards could include (but are not limited to) the following:

1. An intermodal yard or port facility.

2. A motor carrier’s place of business.

3. A shipper’s privately-owned parking lot.

4. A public road, but only if and while public access to the road is restricted through traffic control measures such as lights, gates, flaggers or other means. For example, if a driver must operate on a public road briefly to reach different parts of a private property, the movement may be considered a yard move if public access is restricted during the move.

Examples of properties that do not qualify as yards, include, but are not limited to:

1. A public road without the traffic control measures listed above.

2. Public rest areas.

The FMCSA is seeking comment from the public on the proposed guidance and asks commenters to respond specifically to the following questions:

1. Would defining “yard moves” in the Agency’s regulations provide necessary clarification and therefore benefit carriers and drivers?

2. Are there other properties or situations where drivers may be in a “yard move” status that should be included as examples in this guidance?

3. Would adding examples of “yard moves” be beneficial for this guidance (e.g.,moving a CMV for maintenance)? If so, please provide examples for consideration.

4. How should “yard” be defined for the purposes of this guidance?

The FMCSA is accepting public comment through February 3, 2021. You can click here for more information and to submit your comment.

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