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Florida waives HOS rules for truckers ahead of Hurricane Idalia

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As the state of Florida braces for a major hurricane, transportation officials have issued an emergency declaration relaxing certain rules for commercial vehicle drivers.

The Emergency Order was issued by Governor Ron DeSantis on August 26 in response to  Idalia, which is expected to make landfall on Wednesday as a Category 3 Hurricane, bringing the possibility of “dangerous storm surge, heavy rainfall, flash flooding, strong winds, hazardous seas, and the potential for isolated tornadic activity for the Florida Big Bend and portions of Florida’s Gulf Coast.”

The emergency order applies to the following counties: Alachua, Bay, Calhoun, Charlotte, Citrus, Columbia, DeSoto, Dixie, Franklin, Gadsden, Gilchrist, Gulf, Hamilton, Hardee, Hernando, Hillsborough, Jefferson, Lafayette, Lee, Leon, Levy, Liberty, Madison, Manatee, Marion, Pasco, Pinellas, Polk, Sarasota, Sumter, Suwannee, Taylor, and Wakulla.

The order suspends enforcement of registration requirements for commercial motor vehicles that enter Florida to provide emergency services or supplies, to transport emergency equipment, supplies, or personnel, or to transport FEMA mobile homes or office style mobile homes into or from Florida.

The order also waives hours of service requirements for motor carriers providing emergency relief through September 25, 2023. In order to operate under this waiver, a carrier must be providing “direct assistance” in the emergency. The driver must also keep a copy of the emergency declaration in their possession when operating under the hours of service waiver.

You can view the full Emergency Order here.

Find Hurricane updates from the Florida Trucking Association here.

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