[Federal Register: July 31, 2006 (Volume 71, Number 146)]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration
[Docket No. FMCSA-2005-22936]
Hours of Service of Drivers; Application for Exemption; Landstar
AGENCY: Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), DOT.
ACTION: Notice of application for exemption; request for comments.
SUMMARY: FMCSA announces that it has received an application from
Landstar System, Inc. (Landstar) for an exemption from the commercial
motor vehicle (CMV) drivers' hours-of-service regulations for its
drivers when transporting high-security cargo that requires constant
attendance. The HOS regulation requires that CMV drivers using the
sleeper-berth exception remain in the sleeper berth for at least 8
consecutive hours during one of the 2 rest periods used to accumulate
the equivalent of 10 hours off duty. Landstar states that, for team-
driver operations, this prevents the driver in the sleeper berth from
attending to the cargo while the other driver takes a restroom break,
and conflicts with requirements for all persons to exit the vehicle for
a security inspection when entering certain military installations.
FMCSA requests public comment on the Landstar application for
DATES: Comments must be received on or before August 30, 2006.
ADDRESSES: You may submit comments identified by Docket Number FMCSA-
2005-22936 by any of the following methods:
- Web site: http://dmses.dot.gov/submit/. Follow the
instructions for submitting comments to the DOT Docket Management
System (DMS) Web site.
- Fax: 1-202-493-2251.
- Mail: Docket Management Facility; U.S. Department of
Transportation, 400 Seventh Street, SW., Nassif Building, Room PL-
401,Washington, DC 20590-0001.
- Hand Delivery: Room PL-401 on the plaza level of the
Nassif Building, 400 Seventh Street, SW., Washington, DC, between 9
a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal Holidays.
- Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to http://www.regulations.gov.
Follow the online instructions for submitting comments.
Instructions: All submissions must include the Agency name and
docket number for this notice. Note that all comments received will be
posted without change to http://dms.dot.gov including any personal
information provided. Please see the Privacy Act heading for further
Docket: To read background documents or comments received, go to
http://dms.dot.gov at any time or Room PL-401 on the Plaza Level of the
Nassif Building, 400 Seventh Street, SW., Washington, DC, between 9
a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The
DMS is available 24 hours each day, 365 days each year. If you want us
to notify you that we received your comments, please include a self-
addressed, stamped envelope or postcard or print the acknowledgement
page that appears after submitting comments on-line.
Privacy Act: Anyone may search the electronic form of all comments
received into any of DOT's dockets by the name of the individual
submitting the comment (or of the person signing the comment, if
submitted on behalf of an association, business, labor union, or other
entity). You may review DOT's complete Privacy Act Statement in the
Federal Register published on April 11, 2000 (65 FR 19477, Apr. 11,
2000). This statement is also available at http://dms.dot.gov.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mr. Thomas Yager, Chief, Driver and
Carrier Operations Division, Office of Bus and Truck Standards and
Operations, MC-PSD, Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, 400
Seventh Street, SW., Washington, DC 20590-0001. Telephone: 202-366-
4009. E-mail: MCPSD@fmcsa.dot.gov.
Section 4007 of the Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century
(Pub. L. 105-178, 112 Stat. 107, June 9, 1998; 49 U.S.C. 31315 and
31136(e)) provides authority to grant exemptions from motor carrier
safety regulations. On December 8, 1998, the FMCSA's predecessor
published an interim final rule implementing sec. 4007 (63 FR 67600).
On August 20, 2004, FMCSA published a final rule (69 FR 51589) that
requires the Agency to publish a notice of each exemption request in
the Federal Register (49 CFR 381.315(a)). The Agency must provide the
public an opportunity for public comment on the request and to inspect
information relevant to the application, including any safety analyses
that have been conducted.
The Agency reviews the safety analyses and the public comments, and
determines whether granting the exemption would likely achieve a level
of safety equivalent to, or greater than, the level that would be
achieved by the current regulation (49 CFR 381.305). The Agency must
publish its decision in the Federal Register (49 CFR 381.315(b)). If
the Agency denies the request, it must state the reason for doing so.
If the Agency grants the exemption, the notice must specify the person
or class of persons receiving the exemption, and the regulatory
provision or provisions from which exemption is being granted. The
notice must also specify the effective period of the exemption (up to 2
years), and explain the terms and conditions of the exemption. The
exemption may also be renewed (49 CFR 381.300(b)).
Request for Exemption
The hours-of-service (HOS) regulations for commercial motor vehicle
(CMV) drivers in 49 CFR part 395 apply to motor carriers and drivers
operating CMVs in interstate commerce, as defined in 49 CFR 390.5.
Landstar transports sensitive cargo for the U.S. Department of Defense
(DOD). Landstar states this high-risk cargo must be attended at all
times as required by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (49
CFR 397.5) and DOD regulations.
Landstar states that, during team-driver operations, the sleeper-
berth requirements for at least 8 consecutive hours sleeper-berth use
(49 CFR 395.1(g)(ii)(A)(1)) would not allow the first operator
(driving) to stop for a comfort break because the second operator (in
the sleeper) would not be allowed to attend the vehicle without
interrupting his or her 8 consecutive hours in the sleeper berth.
Landstar also states that security procedures at military
installations require both drivers to exit the vehicle for a security
inspection when the vehicle enters the installation. For team drivers
using the sleeper-berth HOS exception, the second operator would have
to interrupt his or her 8 hours of [[Page 43277]] sleeper-berth time to accommodate these military security procedures.
According to Landstar, both scenarios would interrupt the driver's
8 hours of consecutive sleeper berth use, making it operationally
impossible for them to comply with FMCSA and DOD rules and regulations.
Landstar suggests that the sensitive military shipments should be
considered as a national security risk. Landstar's concerns are: "Will
operators comply with FMCSA and take a comfort break without waking
their partner and risk leaving a high risk load unattended? Or will
operators comply with DOD/SDDC rules and wake the second seat operator
to monitor the load, while breaking his 8 hours of rest?" Landstar
states that operators must choose between the two options. Landstar
further states that, as the current rules are written, an operator
transporting "security clearance, high risk freight" cannot comply
with both the DOD and the FMCSA regulations.
A copy of the Landstar's exemption application is available for
review in the docket.
Request for Comments
In accordance with 49 U.S.C. 31315(b)(4) and 31136(e), FMCSA
requests public comment on Landstar's application for exemption from
the 49 CFR part 395 HOS requirements. The Agency will consider all
comments received by close of business on August 30, 2006. Comments
will be available for examination in the docket at the location listed
under the ADDRESSES section of this notice. The Agency will file
comments received after the comment closing date in the public docket,
and will consider them to the extent practicable. In addition to late
comments, FMCSA will also continue to file, in the public docket,
relevant information that becomes available after the comment closing
date. Interested persons should monitor the public docket for new
Issued on: July 21, 2006.
David H. Hugel,
[FR Doc. E6-12161 Filed 7-28-06; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-EX-P