Legal Update Header On May 12, 2021, the United States Department of Transportation (USDOT) announced it would provide additional help to states affected by the Colonial Pipeline cyberattack.

The White House and USDOT have determined that previous declarations of a “major disaster” issued by the President within the last 120 days allow the states covered by those declarations to use their interstate highways to transport overweight loads of gasoline and other fuels.


Legal Update Header On May 9, 2021, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) issued a regional emergency declaration (the declaration) for 18 states in response to the unanticipated shutdown of the Colonial Pipeline system.

This unanticipated shutdown has caused (and is expected to continue to cause) fuel shortages in various parts of the Eastern United States.


News Brief header The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) recently published a report concerning the role that large trucks play when traveling through work zones.

In conjunction with National Work Zone Awareness Week, which is taking place April 26-30 this year, the FMCSA is specifically focusing on the number of large trucks that are involved in fatal crashes within work zones.


Risk Insights header image Since March 2020, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has provided emergency exemptions and waivers for regulations to support COVID-19 emergency relief efforts.

The FMCSA has provided waivers and exemptions for hours-of-service rules, preemployment drug testing, driving skills tests, and renewals for commercial driver’s licenses (CDLs), commercial learners’ permits (CLPs) and medical certifications. During this time, employers that helped with national emergency efforts and used these waivers or exemptions for their drivers may not have kept up with the documentation necessary for their drivers’ files. It is important for employers to understand that, if they used any of these exemptions or waivers, it should be documented in their drivers’ files, and any paperwork or license updates should be completed as soon as possible.

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On Jan. 4, 2021, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) published proposed regulatory guidance that would revise its current guidance on recording time while operating a commercial motor vehicle (CMV) as a yard move.

This guidance applies to all CMV drivers required to record their hours of service (HOS). The FMCSA is requesting public comments on the proposed guidance. Comments are due on Feb. 3, 2021.

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On Dec. 1, 2020, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) expanded and extended yet again the emergency declaration that provides truck drivers an exemption from Parts 390 to 399 of the federal motor carrier regulations (including hours of service, vehicle inspection and driver qualification rules).

COVID-19 trucking exemptions were originally issued on March 13, 2020, but have been repeatedly expanded to remain in force throughout the current pandemic. This latest extension is set to expire on Feb. 28, 2021 or until the national state of emergency ends, whichever comes sooner.

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The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse rule requires employers to monitor employees’ drug and alcohol violations.

Employers must have drug and alcohol violation queries pulled from the Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse by Jan. 6, 2021.

The rule applies to employers and commercial driver’s license (CDL) drivers. The FMCSA considers owner-operators as both employers and employees, so they must conduct queries on themselves as well.

The FMCSA Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse is an online database that allows employers to conduct queries on prospective and current CDL drivers. Queries are electronic checks used to determine whether CDL drivers are prohibited from performing safety-sensitive functions due to unresolved drug and alcohol program violations.

Legal Update HeaderDue to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has granted a waiver that extends and revises dates for commercial motor vehicle drivers’ (CMVs) licensing and medical certification.

Temporary Waivers

The waiver starts Oct. 1 and applies to certain commercial driver’s license (CDL), commercial learner’s permit (CLP), and medical certification requirements. This waiver provides the same relief as waivers that were granted on March 24 and June 15, 2020, but have since expired.

Legal Update HeaderThe Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) Hours of Service final rule became effective Sept. 29, 2020. The final rule revised the previous regulations on hours of service and affect the sleeper berth provision, adverse driving exception, short-haul exception and the 30-minute break rule.

The FMCSA says it believes these changes will provide more flexibility and allow for more productivity while ensuring safety.