[Federal Register: March 27, 2002 (Volume 67, Number 59)]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration
[Docket No. FMCSA-99-5867]
Parts and Accessories Necessary for Safe Operation; Fuel Tank
Exemptions for Vehicles Manufactured by the Ford Motor Company
AGENCY: Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), DOT.
ACTION: Grant of applications for exemptions.
SUMMARY: The FMCSA is granting the application from the Ford Motor
Company (Ford) for exemptions for the vehicles specified in this
notice. The exemptions sought are from certain fuel tank design and
certification labeling requirements in the Federal Motor Carrier Safety
Regulations (FMCSRs). These exemptions enable motor carriers to
continue operating commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) manufactured by
Ford which are equipped with fuel tanks that do not meet the FMCSA's
requirements that fuel tanks be capable of receiving fuel at a rate of
at least 20 gallons per minute and be labeled or marked by the
manufacturer to certify compliance with the design criteria. The FMCSA
believes the terms and conditions of the current exemptions for
similarly-equipped Ford CMVs have ensured a level of safety that is
equivalent to the level of safety that would be achieved by complying
with the regulations, and that granting the exemptions would not
adversely affect highway safety. The exemptions continue to preempt
inconsistent State and local requirements applicable to interstate
DATES: The exemptions are effective on March 27, 2002. The exemptions
expire on March 29, 2004.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Ms. Deborah M. Freund, Office of Bus
and Truck Standards and Operations, (202) 366-4009, Federal Motor
Carrier Safety Administration, 400 Seventh Street, SW., Washington, DC
20590-0001. Office hours are from 7:45 a.m. to 4:15 p.m., e.t., Monday
through Friday, except Federal holidays.
Internet users may access all comments that were submitted to this
docket in response to the previous notice by using the universal
resource locator (URL) http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/leaving.cgi?from=leavingFR.html&log=linklog&to=http://dms.dot.gov,
and by requesting the docket referenced at the beginning of this notice.
You can examine and copy this document and all comments received at the U.S. Department of
Transportation, Dockets Management Facility, Room PL-401, 400 Seventh
Street, SW., Washington, DC 20590-0001 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. e.t.,
Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.
Ford's Applications for Exemptions
Ford first applied in April 1999, for exemptions from 49 CFR
393.67(c)(7)(ii), which requires that certain fuel tank systems on CMVs
be designed to permit a fill rate of at least 20 gallons (75.7 liters)
per minute, and 49 CFR 393.67(f)(2) and (f)(3), which require that
liquid fuel tanks be marked with the manufacturer's name and a
certification that the tank conforms to all applicable rules in
Sec. 393.67, respectively.
On August 10, 1999 (64 FR 43417), the Federal Highway
Administration (FHWA) published a notice of intent to grant Ford's
applications. The FHWA requested public comment on Ford's applications
and the agency's safety analysis, and presented other relevant
information known to the agency. After considering all the comments
received, the agency granted the exemptions on December 20, 1999 (64 FR
71184). In that notice (at 64 FR 71185), the agency noted that the 20
gallon per minute rate referenced in the FMCSA's regulations, while
appropriate for diesel fuel-powered vehicles, mandates that fill pipes
on gasoline-powered vehicles be capable of receiving fuel at twice the
maximum rate gasoline pumps are designed to dispense fuel. The vehicles
in question are gasoline-fueled and are capable of receiving fuel at a
rate of 17 gallons per minute.
The exemptions covered Sec. 393.67(c)(7)(ii), Construction of
liquid fuel tanks; fill pipe, and Sec. 393.67(f)(2) and (f)(3)(ii)
which require that liquid fuel tanks be marked with the manufacturer's
name, and a certification that the tank conforms to all applicable
rules in Sec. 393.67, respectively. The exemptions were granted for two
On November 2, 2001, (66 FR 55727) the FMCSA published a notice of
its intent to renew these exemptions. The FMCSA received one comment,
from Ford. Ford requested that the FMCSA renew its exemption for the
fuel tanks covered in that notice. On December 27, 2001 (66 FR 66970),
the agency published a notice granting the application for renewing
In its comment to the November 2, 2001, notice, Ford also advised
the agency that it sought additional exemptions to cover the fuel tanks
of additional models of E-series vehicles that were not in production
at the time of the original 1999 petition, and for certain F-series
In a second notice, also published December 27, 2001 (66 FR 66971),
the FMCSA announced its intent to grant exemptions for these additional
vehicles. The FMCSA received no comments to that notice.
The FMCSA has decided to grant the exemptions for the additional
Ford vehicles specified in the second December 27, 2001, notice. The
commercial motor vehicles covered by the exemptions are still in
operation, and the agency is not aware of any information, anecdotal or
otherwise, that would suggest that the level of safety for the exempted
vehicles is not equivalent to the level of safety that would have been
achieved if the vehicles complied with Secs. 393.67(c)(7)(ii),
393.67(f)(2), and 393.67(f)(3)(ii). No interested parties have
submitted comments to the docket indicating that any aspects of the
exemptions have had an adverse effect on highway safety. Accordingly,
the agency is granting the exemptions that were the subject of the
December 27 notice for a two-year period.
Terms and Conditions for the Exemption
The FMCSA is continuing to provide exemptions to
Secs. 393.67(c)(7)(ii), 393.67(f)(2), and 393.67(f)(3)(ii) for motor
carriers operating the Ford vehicles specified in the next paragraph.
The exemptions are effective upon publication in the Federal Register
pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(1) and are valid until March 29, 2004,
unless revoked earlier by the FMCSA. Ford, or any of the affected motor
carriers, may apply to the FMCSA for another renewal of the exemption.
The exemption continues to preempt inconsistent State or local
requirements applicable to interstate commerce.
As with the other exemption granted to Ford, the motor carriers
operating these vehicles would not be required to maintain
documentation concerning the exemption because the vehicles and fuel
tanks have markings that would enable enforcement officials to identify
them. The vehicles covered by the exemptions can be identified by their
vehicle identification numbers (VINs). The VINs for the additional E-
series vehicles contain E35 or E55 codes in the fifth, sixth, and
seventh positions. The fuel tanks are marked with Ford part numbers
F3UA-9002-G*, F3UA-9002-H*, F4UA-9002-V*, F4UA-9002-X*, F5UA-9002-V*,
F5UA-9002-X*, F6UA-9002-Y*, F6UA-9002-Z*, F7UA-9002-C*, F7UA-9002D*,
YC25-9002-D* (a new fuel tank for E37 series vehicles), or 2C24-9002-E*
(a new fuel tank for E55 series vehicles) where the asterisk (*)
represents a ``wild card'' character (any character of the alphabet).
The VINs for the F-series vehicles contain an F53 code in the fifth,
sixth, and seventh positions. The fuel tanks are marked with part
numbers 1C34-9K007-F*, 1C34-9K007-G*, and 1C34-9K007-H* where the
asterisk (*) represents a ``wild card'' character (any character of the
Authority: 49 U.S.C. 31136 and 31315; and 49 CFR 1.73.
Issued on: March 22, 2002.
Joseph M. Clapp,
[FR Doc. 02-7363 Filed 3-26-02; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-EX-P