FMCSA grants hours-of-service relief for 37 states, D.C.

December 31, 2017 By    

Responding to an anticipated home-heating-fuel shortage due to severe weather from Winter Storm Frankie and the demand for increased usage, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) declared a regional emergency and issued an hours-of-service waiver for 37 states and the District of Columbia.

Regional field administrators for the Eastern, Southern, Midwestern and Western service centers issued the declaration of emergency in a Dec. 30 letter. The National Propane Gas Association alerted its members about the waiver by email.

The states covered are: Alabama, Arkansas, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Washington, D.C.

FMCSA says conditions will create a need for immediate transportation of propane and home heating oil and fuels into and from the affected states and jurisdictions. Motor carriers and drivers providing direct assistance to the emergency and transporting fuel products into and from the affected states and jurisdictions are granted emergency relief from Parts 390 through 399 of Title 49 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), including for any portion of the trip that occurs outside the affected states and jurisdictions, the letter states. Certain restrictions of the declaration are outlined in the letter.

FMCSA notes that nothing in the emergency declaration shall be construed as an exemption from the controlled substances and alcohol use and testing requirements, the commercial driver’s license requirements, the financial responsibility (insurance) requirements, the hazardous material regulations, applicable size and weight requirements or any other portion of the regulations not authorized pursuant to 49 CFR 390.23.

According to the FMCSA, the declaration is effective immediately and shall remain in effect for the duration of the emergency or until 11:59 p.m. Jan. 14, 2018 – whichever occurs first.

Editor’s note: The FMCSA extended this regional declaration of emergency on Jan. 10, Jan. 24 and Feb. 6. Read the latest notice.

About the Author:

Brian Richesson is the editor in chief of LP Gas Magazine. Contact him at or 216-706-3748.

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