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New Trucking Safety Provisions

Reasons Insurance

New Trucking Safety Provisions in the $1 Trillion Infrastructure Bill

The White House’s $1 trillion infrastructure bill was signed into law on Nov. 15, 2021. This bill contains several provisions affecting commercial motor vehicle (CMV) safety and operations. These provisions can be found in the bill’s Surface Transportation Act of 2021. Let’s examine some of the new provisions within the Surface Transportation Act of 2021 that impact CMV safety:

Apprenticeship pilot program

The bill requires the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) secretary to establish a pilot program within 60 days that allows employers to create apprenticeship programs for CMV drivers. This three-year program must allow up to 3,000 drivers under the age of 21 to operate CMVs. These drivers will have to complete 400 hours of training, including 240 hours behind the wheel in interstate commerce driving. Entry-level training will also be included to allow drivers to obtain their commercial driver’s licenses (CDLs).

Truck leasing

Within six months, the bill requires the FMCSA to establish a “Truck Leasing Task Force” in consultation with the Department of Labor. This task force will review the terms of common truck leasing arrangements and determine whether those arrangements are equitable and safe.

Out-of-service enforcement

When CMV drivers are placed out of service at the state level, some still operate in interstate commerce. To prevent this from occurring, the bill requires the FMCSA to develop and publish initiatives to deter CMV drivers from operating after being taken out of service.

State inspection programs for passenger-carrier vehicles—

The bill also states that the FMCSA will have one year to solicit additional comments on state inspection programs for passenger-carrier vehicles. This commentary will determine if there should be a final rule issued for self-inspections. The FMCSA must consider the impact of continuing to allow self-inspections to satisfy periodic inspection requirements on the safety of passenger carrier operations.

Electronic logging device oversight

Under the bill, the FMCSA has six months to submit a report to Congress that analyzes the costs and effectiveness of electronic logging devices (ELDs). In this report, the FMCSA must detail the processes used to review ELD logs and protect proprietary and personally identifiable information. Also, the report must outline how an operator may challenge or appeal a violation notice issued by the FMCSA relating to ELDs.

This is by no means a full list of the infrastructure bill provisions. For more information, review the text of the bill here. Contact us today for additional industry updates and risk management resources.

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