FMCSA adds grocery products back into extended COVID emergency hours waiver

Updated Aug 13, 2020

Trucking news and briefs for Wednesday, Aug. 12:

COVID-19 emergency hours declaration extended into Sept.
Due to the ongoing national COVID-19 pandemic, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has again extended the hours of service waiver through Sept. 14 for carriers providing direct assistance in support of COVID-19 relief efforts. The exemption was previously set to expire on Aug. 14.

The terms of the waiver are mostly the same as they were for the previous month, except FMCSA made the decision to reinstate food, paper products and other groceries for restocking of stores as a qualifying load.

The waiver now covers drivers hauling:

  • Livestock and livestock feed
  • Medical supplies and equipment related to the testing, diagnosis and treatment of COVID-19
  • Supplies and equipment necessary for community safety, sanitation and prevention of community transmission of COVID-19 such as masks, gloves, hand sanitizer, soap and disinfectants
  • Food, paper products and other groceries for emergency restocking of distribution centers or stores

FMCSA notes that routine commercial deliveries, including mixed loads “with a normal quantity of qualifying emergency relief added to obtain the benefits of this emergency declaration” do not qualify as direct assistance.

Digital brokerage Convoy expands factoring service to non-Convoy loads
Digital broker Convoy has added a factoring service that offers carriers same-day or next-day payments for all loads, including a no-cost rate for loads from Convoy. For non-Convoy loads, factoring rates will run between 1% and 2.99%.

The company says there are no contracts with the factoring service. The service has also been integrated into the Convoy app, enabling operators to submit voices in the same app that they find loads.

The company has also added a fuel card that offers carriers savings on fuel purchases. Discounts are available at more than 1,000 stations across the U.S., Convoy  says, including TA-Petro, Ambest, Roady’s and Sapp Bros. Convoy has integrated all discount locations in its app, allowing drivers to search along a route for stations in the network.

Geotab adds COVID resources to app
Telematics provider Geotab has launched COVID Guardian as a free add-in to its Geotab Drive mobile app, which helps carriers meet compliance regulations, improve productivity and keep drivers safe.

The COVID Guardian within the app helps drivers find updated information about restrooms, food options, parking and COVID regulation modifications. More specifically, drivers can use the app to: find which restrooms are open and closed and their revised hours of operation; find grocery stores, places to eat, online ordering capabilities and revised hours of operation; find operational parking lots; and stay updated on changing regulations.

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The app also includes a state filter for finding state-specific COVID-19 updates, as well as updates for the nine nearest states.

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