FMCSA Issues HOS Proposal
This week the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) issued a proposed rule pertaining to the ag hours of service exception for the transportation of ag supplies. This past spring our industry had been operating under a 90 day special waiver to use the HOS exception for ammonia transportation between the terminals and the retail sites. The waiver expired in late June, leaving us again in limbo as the fall season approaches. After more industry meetings with FMCSA, the Agency issued this proposal which is to provide a 2 year waiver from HOS for these movements, but just for anhydrous ammonia. They are taking comments until August 13 and we'll also be making a case that the exception should be extended to other ag supplies such as liquid fertilizers.
IFCA is going to Washington D.C. next week and Jean Payne along with four IFCA members will be meeting with the FMCSA Director on this issue. For a copy of the proposed rule, please go to the IFCA website. Shortly, we will provide you with a sample letter to FMCSA on this issue. We have also posted the fact sheet that we gave to FMCSA that explains how we utilized the waiver this Spring, which illustrates with pictures the backlog at the terminals, the amount of ammonia transported and our safety record. If you have questions please contact Jean Payne. IFCA is committed to restoring the full HOS ag exception for all segments of "distribution" within a 100 mile radius.