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Overdrive Staff | October 01, 2011

FMCSA issued a statement saying it will review the filing after it is served with the lawsuit.

In 2002, Altshuler Berzon attorneys obtained a ruling from the same appeals court for the plaintiffs and other organizations to block the previous cross-border program with Mexico, which the U.S. Supreme Court overturned in 2004.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia rejected the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association’s request for a stay of the program Sept. 8. It will schedule oral arguments following the completion of brief filings, with the last brief due by Dec. 5

While some congressional members support the program, others oppose it, including longtime opponent Rep. Pete DeFazio. The Oregon Democrat sent a Sept. 16 letter to FMCSA Administrator Anne Ferro expressing his concern about the safety of Mexican trucks.

— Jill Dunn



Bridge closure

Truckers will have to find alternate routes on trips to Louisville, Ky., following closure of the 50-year-old Sherman Minton Bridge. The bridge, which carries I-64 and U.S. 150 traffic across the Ohio River between Louisville and New Albany, Ind., was shut down for months after cracks were discovered in the steel structure.



Hours rule due by end of month

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration appears likely to issue an hours of service final rule by its Oct. 28 deadline.

FMCSA sent a final rule to Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood Aug. 11, just two days past target date. After LaHood’s office completes consideration, the Office of Management and Budget will review the rule before publication in the Federal Register. A federal court originally set the publication deadline for July 26, but later extended it until Oct. 28.

The current hours rule, in effect since 2004, made four primary changes to the regulations then in place: increasing the daily driving limit from 10 hours to 11 hours; increasing the required minimum daily rest from 8 hours to 10 hours; decreasing the number of hours on duty after which a driver may not operate a commercial motor vehicle from 15 hours to 14 hours; and allowing a driver to “reset” the weekly 60 or 70-hour on duty limits with 34 consecutive hours off duty.

Under the current proposal, FMCSA is considering whether to reduce the daily driving limit from 11 hours to 10 hours and has proposed to limit the 34-hour restart provision by requiring that it include two periods from midnight to 6 a.m. and limiting its use to once per week.

In a letter to Cass Sunstein, administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs at the Office of Management and Budget, the American Trucking Associations earlier this month urged the Obama administration to live up to its promise to relieve the burden of unnecessary regulations as it considers hours of service changes.

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