The Maryland State Highway Administration’s (SHA) is now providing truckers a way to carry paperless permits – to be displayed in electronic format during inspections. The permits replace traditional paper-issued permits and attachments.
The SHA said this makes Maryland the first state on the eastern seaboard and the second in the nation to issue electronic hauling permits for the trucking industry.
Maryland regulations require that haulers carry the permit and attachments to validate the safe transport of loads as a safety and compliance measure. Up until now, truck drivers needed to carry a paper copy of the state-issued permit on all applicable transports. Trucks are often on the road with loads or at jobsites and do not have the capability to print paper copies. Drivers often would need to endure burdensome measures costing time and money to access paper-printed permits, according to State Highway Administrator Melinda B. Peters.
“This is good news for our members,” Louis Campion, Maryland Motor Truck Assn. president & CEO said. “Maryland is taking the steps necessary to lead the nation in delivering 21st century advancements to the trucking industry that enhance doing business with the state.”
Maryland enforcement agencies have the ability to access the Automated Hauling Permit System (AHPS) to validate application submissions against driver logbooks to verify travel start times. If the use of e-permitting is abused by anyone or any company, the privilege will be revoked for that individual and company. The e-permit is optional; customers may continue to carry printed hard copies of permits and attachments, Peters said.
SHA’s Motor Carrier Division manages and permits approximately 160,000 over-sized moves each year and issues approximately 600-800 permits each day. Helping SHA conserve natural resources and reduce its overall carbon footprint, e-permits can potentially save the printing of nearly 50,000 pieces of paper each month. This is another environmentally friendly business practice that reduces waste in support of the state’s green initiatives.
“Maryland maintains a good working relationship with the trucking community, and this partnership keeps our state’s roadways safer places to travel,” said Capt. Norman Dofflemyer, Maryland State Police Commander of Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Division. “By minimizing burdens and simplifying processes, we build trust with haulers that in turn leads to improved compliance.”