Second Extension Aids Ag's Unique Transportation Needs

Second Extension Aids Ag's Unique Transportation Needs

The Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) announced last week an additional 90-day waiver from the Electronic Logging Device (ELD) mandate for agriculture-related transportation.

In its notice to the public, FMCSA also noted it will publish final guidance on the both the agricultural 150 air-mile hours-of-service exemption and personal conveyance. Both the waiver and guidance will be published in the Federal Register. An earlier article addressed some guidance and exemption questions.

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue recognizes agriculture’s unique transportation needs and applauded Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao ELD waiver announcement in the following statement:

“The ELD mandate imposes restrictions upon the agriculture industry that lack flexibility necessary for the unique realities of hauling agriculture commodities. If the agriculture industry had been forced to comply by the March 18 deadline, live agricultural commodities, including plants and animals, would have been at risk of perishing before they reached their destination. The 90-day extension is critical to give DOT additional time to issue guidance on hours-of-service and other ELD exemptions that are troubling for agriculture haulers.

“Current ELD technologies do not recognize the hours-of-service exemptions for agriculture that are in federal law. This is a classic example of a one-size-fits-all federal regulation that ignores common sense to the detriment of sectors like agriculture.

“I applaud Secretary Chao for recognizing these obstacles and giving extra time for compliance while DOT issues guidance. While public safety is a critical concern for all of  trucking, the safety of living agricultural commodities in transport must also be considered.”

Additional information and resources regarding the ELDs and Hours of Service are available at https://www.azfb.org/Public-Policy/Resources-and-Links

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