FMCSA Issues New 90-Day ELD Waiver for Ag Haulers

<p><strong>The FMCSA is granting an additional 90-day temporary waiver from the ELD rule for &ldquo;agriculture-related transportation.&rdquo;</strong> <em>Photo: J.J. Keller</em></p>

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration announced on March 13 that it is granting an additional 90-day temporary waiver from the electronic logging device rule for “agriculture-related transportation.” The agency also said that during that time period, it will publish “final guidance” on both the agricultural 150 air-mile hours-of-service exemption and use of personal conveyance under the ELD rule.

In addition, FMCSA said it will provide “further guidance to assist in the effective implementation of the Congressionally-mandated electronic logging device rule without impeding commerce or safety.”

“We continue to see strong compliance rates across the country that improve weekly, but we are mindful of the unique work our agriculture community does and will use the following 90 days to ensure we publish more helpful guidance that all operators will benefit from,” said FMCSA Administrator Ray Martinez.

FMCSA stated that since Dec. 2017, roadside compliance with the house of service record-keeping requirements, including the ELD rule, has been “steadily increasing, with roadside compliance reaching a high of 96% in the most recent available data… and “There are over 330 separate self-certified devices listed on the registration list.”

The agency reiterated that full enforcement of the ELD rule will begin on April 1, 2018.

As of that date, carriers found to not have an ELD when required will be placed out of service. The driver will remain out-of-service for 10 hours in accordance with Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance criteria.  FMCSA noted that at that point, “to facilitate compliance the driver will be allowed to travel to the next scheduled stop and should not be dispatched again without an ELD.  If the driver is dispatched again without an ELD, the motor carrier will be subject to further enforcement action.”

The agency added that it is “committed to continuing the ongoing dialogue on these issues.”

The waiver and guidance announced on March 13 will be published in the Federal Register. For more information on the ELD rule from the agency, click here.


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