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FMCSA Suspends Rules in 26 States to Help Fuel, Supplies Flow After Harvey and Irma

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Subhead: Hurricane Harvey

To aid in the effort to bring supplies and fuel to the areas affected by Hurricane Harvey, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and the State of Texas have temporarily suspended several trucking regulations (truckinginfo.com- 9/1/17)

FMCSA announced on Sept. 1 that due to an expected shortage of fuel products, including gasoline, diesel, aviation fuel, propane and home heating oil, “due to refinery delays and interruption of delivery through pipelines as a result of damage from Tropical Storm Harvey,” it has declared a regional emergency declaration for 26 States and the District of Columbia. “Motor carriers and drivers providing direct assistance to the emergency transporting fuel products into and from these States and jurisdictions are granted emergency relief from Title 49 CFR Parts 390 through 399, the agency stated.

The suspended regulations include those concerned with driver hours of service, inspection, repair, and maintenance, hazardous materials transportation, driving, and parking, and other health and safety standards.

Subhead: Hurricane Irma

Though the effects of Hurricane Harvey’s recent onslaught of Southeast Texas remain well in focus, another major hurricane is barreling down on the U.S., prompting Florida to suspend hours of service regulations for truckers hauling emergency services or supplies; transporting emergency equipment, supplies or personnel; or transporting FEMA mobile homes into or out of the state (overdriveonline.com – 9/5/17).

Florida has also suspended registration requirements for such vehicles and waived size and weight regulations for any vehicle “transporting emergency equipment, services, supplies, and agricultural commodities and citrus.”

Most prediction models for the storm’s landfall forecast the storm to hit south Florida this weekend. The Category 5 hurricane has already tied for the second strongest winds ever recorded in the Atlantic Ocean. The Emergency Declaration suspending the regulations does not specify an expiration date.

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