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Overdrive Staff | February 01, 2011

– Jill Dunn



DOT updates rules timetable

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration indicates a final rule for entry-level minimum driver training will be published by December.

One of the pending rulemakings involves carriers required to use electronic onboard recorders.

The U.S. Department of Transportation updates the status of pending rulemaking at the start of each month with its significant rulemaking report, but the report does not commit the agency to conclusions or actions.

The entry level driver training final rule, scheduled for publication last February, will be published Nov. 25. The agency found it needed additional coordination and discovered unanticipated impacts needing further study, which delayed publication

This rule would require behind-the-wheel and classroom training for entry-level CDL holders to operate commercial motor vehicles. A previous final rule was remanded to the FMCSA five years ago by a federal appeals court. In 2008, the agency ended its extended comment period regarding the subsequent notice of proposed rulemaking.

A final rule is expected Feb. 28 for CDL testing and Commercial Learner’s Permit standards, a year later than scheduled. The extended comment period on the related NPRM ended in 2008.

This rulemaking would revise CDL knowledge and skills testing standards, decrease fraud at state licensing agencies and set new minimum standards for states to issue CLP, in response to federal statutes.

The agency set a June 7 supplemental NPRM publication date for replacing the current identification and registration systems with the United Registration System. The Single State Registration System replacement, which the ICC Termination Act directed be merged under URS, and the cargo insurance requirement have been addressed in previous final rules.

The rulemaking schedule also included:

• A Jan. 28 NPRM publication date for revisions regarding expanding the number of carriers required to use electronic onboard recorders, consolidated with the hours of service supporting documents for drivers.

• A July 10 publication date for a NPRM revising the Carrier Safety Fitness Determination, in accordance with the Compliance, Safety, Accountability program.

• A 2012 publication of NPRM amending a rule to allow drivers with insulin-treated diabetes to drive a truck without requiring a FMCSA exemption.

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