Avery Vise

Avery
Vise
Contributing editor
Articles
FMCSA expands waiver program for military drivers

Qualified individuals nationwide now have up to a year to obtain a Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration military skills test waiver instead of just 90 days, the agency announced July 25. The action is one of several that FMCSA announced as part of the Joining Forces Initiative to promote expanded employment and career development opportunities for veterans and military spouses.

Ferro leaving FMCSA in August

Anne Ferro, who has served longer than any other head of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, will leave her post as administrator in late August to become president and CEO of the American Assn. of Motor Vehicle Administrators. Ferro announced her decision early Friday afternoon in an e-mail message to FMCSA staff. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx announced her departure a few minutes later in an e-mail message to Dept. of Transportation personnel.

FMCSA and OSHA to coordinate on worker complaints

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) announced that they had signed a memorandum of understanding to share information that might allow both agencies to take enforcement action when a worker alleges safety problems, coercion or retaliation related to motor carrier operations.

Shorter-term highway fix faces uphill battle
With time running out, the Senate may adopt House bill to keep the Highway Trust Fund solvent until next May. If it does, a long-term Transportation Bill is highly unlikely this year.
OOIDA members sue to halt PSP

Six members of the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Assn. (OOIDA) filed a federal class-action suit to halt the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s Pre-employment Screening Program (PSP), OOIDA announced July 23. The truckers argue in a complaint filed in a U.S. district court in Boston that FMCSA is violating the Federal Privacy Act by unlawfully disseminating reports of driver safety records to potential employers.

ATA presses for shorter trust fund fix

The U.S. Senate is expected as early as today, July 23, to take up legislation (H.R. 5021) to stave off an impending shortfall in the Highway Trust Fund and to authorize spending beyond the current Sept. 30 expiration, and the American Trucking Assns. is pushing for a patch that ends in December in order to preserve the possibility of action later this year on a longer-term measure that provides more money for highway development.

FMCSA to change carriers’ SMS web display in August

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration plans to launch changes to the display of carriers’ information on the public Safety Measurement System (SMS) website on Aug. 2, the agency announced in a Federal Register notice to be published July 24.

House passes short-term highway fix

An eight-month extension of highway and transit spending and more money to keep the highway trust fund solvent moved closer to enactment June 15 as the U.S. House of Representatives passed such legislation (H.R. 5021) by a vote of 367 to 55. The bill also would continue the funding authority for the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA).

BigRoad welcomes FMCSA guidance on mobile app logs

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) newly revised guidance concerning drivers’ records of duty status (RODS) generated by logging software programs on laptop computers, tablets and smartphones confirms that BigRoad’s electronic logs are an officially recognized option for RODS compliance, the company said.

Senate maneuver may well dead-end a long-term highway bill anytime this year 

In a bid to expedite a short-term extension of highway programs, the Senate Finance Committee yesterday approved compromise legislation that authorizes enough funding to cover needs through May 2015.

The compromise represents a sharp departure from Chairman Ron Wyden’s (D-OR) original plan, which would have continued funding only through Dec. 31, 2014. That deadline would have forced Congress to address the highway trust fund again this year.

House panel approves highway-bill funding extension through next May 

Today, the House Ways and Means Committee approved without change– except for fixing a typographical error– legislation (H.R. 5021) that would extend the authorization and financing for surface-transportation programs through May 31, 2015.

FMCSA revises digital-signature policy for log software 

Truck drivers who use logging software programs on laptops, tablets and smartphones to generate their records of duty status (RODS) are no longer required to print and sign paper copies of the RODS generated through the software. But only if they can sign them at the end of each work day and display the electronic record at roadside.

House bill would extend highway funding through May 2015

The House Ways and Means Committee is scheduled tomorrow, July 10, to consider legislation (H.R. 5021) that would extend the authorization and financing for surface transportation programs – including funding for highway construction and for operations of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration – through May 31, 2015.

Committee Chairman Dave Camp (R-MI) introduced the bill on June 8.

Pix: Daimler 'Future Truck 2025'

Daimler Trucks recently demonstrated a long-haul commercial truck that operates without driver intervention using a function it calls “Highway Pilot.” Known as the Mercedes-Benz Future Truck 2025, the truck autonomously maneuvered around obstacles such as slow-moving traffic and a broken-down vehicle on a stretch of autobahn near Magdeburg, Germany, while the driver focused on other matters. (All photos courtesy of Daimler Trucks.)

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