Hours of Service of Drivers: Transco, Inc.; Application for Exemption, 52873-52875 [2018-22706]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 202 / Thursday, October 18, 2018 / Notices copying and electronic filing. If you submit comments by mail and would like to know that they reached the facility, please enclose a stamped, selfaddressed postcard or envelope. FMCSA will consider all comments and material received during the comment period and may grant or not grant this application based on your comments. khammond on DSK30JT082PROD with NOTICES II. Legal Basis FMCSA has authority under 49 U.S.C. 31136(e) and 31315 to grant exemptions from certain Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSRs). FMCSA must publish a notice of each exemption request in the Federal Register (49 CFR 381.315(a)). The Agency must provide the public an opportunity to inspect the information relevant to the application, including any safety analyses that have been conducted. The Agency must also provide an opportunity for public comment on the request. The Agency reviews safety analyses and public comments submitted, 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 decision of the Agency must be published in the Federal Register (49 CFR 381.315(b)) with the reasons for denying or granting the application and, if granted, the name of the person or class of persons receiving the exemption, and the regulatory provision from which the exemption is granted. The notice must also specify the effective period (up to 5 years) and explain the terms and conditions of the exemption. The exemption may be renewed (49 CFR 381.300(b)). III. Request for Exemption Wolfe House Movers, LLC (USDOT 1279267), and Wolfe House Movers of Indiana, LLC (USDOT 1679025) (Wolfe) seek an exemption from the HOS requirements of 49 CFR 395.3(b)(1) which prohibits a motor carrier from permitting or requiring a driver to drive a property-carrying CMV after the driver has been on duty 60 hours within a period of 7 consecutive days if the employing motor carrier does not operate CMVs every day of the week. Wolfe does not operate CMVs every day of the week and is prohibited from using the 70-hour/8-day rule in 49 CFR 395.3(b)(2) for its business operations. According to Wolfe, its primary line of business is lifting and moving buildings. Drivers employed by Wolfe transport steel beams and dollies to and from various jobsites where work is performed. Wolfe advises that its owners believe that Sunday is a day of VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:28 Oct 17, 2018 Jkt 247001 rest and worship and refuse any business opportunities that would require Sunday work. Because Wolfe does not conduct business on Sunday, its commericial business operations are subject to the 60-hours-in-7-day rule set forth in 49 CFR 395.3(b)(1). Due to the geographical spread of its operations, Wolfe asserts that the 60 hour limitation is a substantial burden. Wolfe explained in its application that the company attempts to schedule work so that all crews can be at their home terminal before the 60th on-duty hour of the week. However, weather, traffic, or jobsite conditions sometimes delay completion of projects causing crews to be stranded one or two hours’ drive from the home terminal. When delays occur relief drivers are sent in noncommercial vehicles to pick up stranded drivers so that the drivers who have run out of hours can drive back to the home terminal using the non-commercial vehicles while the relief drivers return the CMVs to the terminal. Wolfe reports that it is a small company and it is difficult to have relief drivers available on short notice and it is unproductive and costly for the company. Wolfe asserts that the stress and pressure associated with approaching the 60-hour cut-off is likely to have a detrimental effect on the safety performance of even well-trained and well-qualified drivers. According to Wolfe, allowing it to use the 70-hour/8-day HOS ruleset for all drivers not operating CMVs on Sundays would provide the following significant safety benefits: • The need for relief drivers would be significantly reduced or completely eliminated. This would result in fewer on-road miles driven (by eliminating the need for a relief driver to drive up to 100 miles out to pick up the CMV and for the regular driver to drive the nonCMV back the same 100 miles). This would also mean that the CMV would continue to be driven by the driver most familiar with it, rather than a part-time driver. • Drivers would be less stressed, knowing that they have sufficient time to complete their weekly schedule even if they are delayed by heavy traffic, weather conditions, etc. A copy of Wolfe’ss application for exemption is available for review in the docket for this notice. Issued on: October 12, 2018. Larry W. Minor, Associate Administrator for Policy. [FR Doc. 2018–22707 Filed 10–17–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–EX–P PO 00000 Frm 00074 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 52873 DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration [Docket No. FMCSA–2018–0302] Hours of Service of Drivers: Transco, Inc.; Application for Exemption Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), DOT. ACTION: Notice of application for exemption; request for comments. AGENCY: FMCSA announces that it has received an application from Transco, Inc. (Transco) for an exemption from the 30-minute rest break provision of the Agency’s hours-of-service (HOS) regulations for commercial motor vehicle (CMV) drivers. Transco requests that its drivers be permitted to comply with the 30-minute rest break requirement while performing on-duty, not-driving tasks. The requested exemption would apply to all Transco drivers in its grocery and food service divisions who make wholesale deliveries to grocery and convenience stores. Transco believes that the exemption, if granted, will achieve a level of safety equivalent to the level that would be achieved absent the exemption. FMCSA requests public comment on Transco’s application for exemption. SUMMARY: Comments must be received on or before November 19, 2018. ADDRESSES: You may submit comments identified by Federal Docket Management System (FDMS) Number FMCSA–2018–0302 by any of the following methods: • Federal eRulemaking Portal: www.regulations.gov. See the Public Participation and Request for Comments section below for further information. • Mail: Docket Management Facility, U.S. Department of Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., West Building, Ground Floor, Room W12–140, Washington, DC 20590–0001. • Hand Delivery or Courier: West Building, Ground Floor, Room W12– 140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. E.T., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. • Fax: 1–202–493–2251. Each submission must include the Agency name and the docket number for this notice. Note that DOT posts all comments received without change to www.regulations.gov, including any personal information included in a comment. Please see the Privacy Act heading below. Docket: For access to the docket to read background documents or DATES: E:\FR\FM\18OCN1.SGM 18OCN1 52874 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 202 / Thursday, October 18, 2018 / Notices comments, go to www.regulations.gov at any time or visit Room W12–140 on the ground level of the West Building, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., ET, Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The on-line FDMS is available 24 hours each day, 365 days each year. Privacy Act: In accordance with 5 U.S.C. 553(c), DOT solicits comments from the public to better inform its rulemaking process. DOT posts these comments, without edit, including any personal information the commenter provides, to www.regulations.gov, as described in the system of records notice (DOT/ALL–14 FDMS), which can be reviewed at www.dot.gov/privacy. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mr. Richard Clemente, FMCSA Driver and Carrier Operations Division; Office of Carrier, Driver and Vehicle Safety Standards; Telephone: (202) 366–2722; Email: MCPSD@dot.gov. If you have questions on viewing or submitting material to the docket, contact Docket Services, telephone (202) 366–9826. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Public Participation and Request for Comments FMCSA encourages you to participate by submitting comments and related materials. khammond on DSK30JT082PROD with NOTICES Submitting Comments If you submit a comment, please include the docket number for this notice (FMCSA–2018–0302), indicate the specific section of this document to which the comment applies, and provide a reason for suggestions or recommendations. You may submit your comments and material online or by fax, mail, or hand delivery, but please use only one of these means. FMCSA recommends that you include your name and a mailing address, an email address, or a phone number in the body of your document so the Agency can contact you if it has questions regarding your submission. To submit your comment online, go to www.regulations.gov and put the docket number, ‘‘FMCSA–2018–0302’’ in the ‘‘Keyword’’ box, and click ‘‘Search.’’ When the new screen appears, click on ‘‘Comment Now!’’ button and type your comment into the text box in the following screen. Choose whether you are submitting your comment as an individual or on behalf of a third party and then submit. If you submit your comments by mail or hand delivery, submit them in an unbound format, no larger than 81⁄2 by 11 inches, suitable for copying and electronic filing. If you submit comments by mail and would VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:28 Oct 17, 2018 Jkt 247001 like to know that they reached the facility, please enclose a stamped, selfaddressed postcard or envelope. FMCSA will consider all comments and material received during the comment period. II. Legal Basis FMCSA has authority under 49 U.S.C. 31136(e) and 31315 to grant exemptions from certain Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations. FMCSA must publish a notice of each exemption request in the Federal Register (49 CFR 381.315(a)). The Agency must provide the public an opportunity to inspect the information relevant to the application, including any safety analyses that have been conducted. The Agency must also provide an opportunity for public comment on the request. The Agency reviews safety analyses and public comments submitted, 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 decision of the Agency must be published in the Federal Register (49 CFR 381.315(b)) with the reasons for denying or granting the application and, if granted, the name of the person or class of persons receiving the exemption, and the regulatory provision from which the exemption is granted. The notice must also specify the effective period (up to 5 years) and explain the terms and conditions of the exemption. The exemption may be renewed (49 CFR 381.300(b)). III. Request for Exemption Transco seeks an exemption from the 30-minute rest break provision in 49 CFR 395.3(a)(3)(ii). Specifically, Transco requests an exemption that would allow its drivers to take a 30-minute on-duty, non-driving break in place of the 30minute off-duty rest break currently required. McLane, Transco’s parent company, is one of the nation’s largest entities engaged in supply chain services, providing grocery and foodservice supply chain solutions for convenience stores, mass merchants, drug stores and restaurants throughout the United States. Approximately 3,580 Transco drivers would be eligible for the requested exemption. These drivers utilize approximately 1,700 CMVs in Transco’s fleet, which consist almost exclusively of tractors equipped with sleeper berths, usually hauling 48 or 53foot trailers. In most cases Transco’s drivers operate in two-driver teams. Routes for these drivers include numerous, frequent stops to make deliveries of groceries to retailers. On these trips, Driver B goes directly into PO 00000 Frm 00075 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 the sleeper berth at the beginning of the trip while Driver A conducts all predeparture inspection requirements and then drives to the first delivery. This allows Driver B to delay starting his duty period until a time that is less than 14 hours from the work tour completion, thereby ensuring compliance with the 14-hour rule. Depending on travel times, Driver B usually starts working sometime between the first and third delivery stop. When Driver B comes out of the sleeper berth, he or she rides in the passenger seat while Driver A drives between stops. The two drivers have overlapping working tours and unload together at most stops in the middle of the trip. Until the end of Driver A’s 14hour duty period, the drivers may alternate driving and resting in the passenger seat between deliveries. Once Driver A reaches his or her 14-hour limit, Driver A will often go into the sleeper berth, but is allowed to remain on duty and perform non-driving activities. Therefore, at some point, usually when approximately one-half of the driving for a work tour has been completed, Driver B will take over driving duties and Driver A will sit in the passenger seat between stops. Since Driver B did not begin his or her duty period until exiting the sleeper berth, Driver B will have sufficient time available to drive during the rest of the work tour. Similarly, because Driver A ceases driving when approximately onehalf of the work tour has been completed, he or she does not drive beyond the 14 hour on-duty window in which driving is permitted. Total trip time averages 17.2 hours. However, total driving time for both drivers combined averages just 9.1 hours. Each driver spends, on average, only 4.55 hours or 32.9% of their working tour engaged in driving, again much less than the 11 hours maximum time allowed. Transco contends that itsoperations are characterized by several factors that make the driving involved low risk and less susceptible to the type of fatigue associated with long-haul driving for the following reasons: • Transco’s drivers operate largely on local roads at low speeds, which reduces fatigue risk. According to Transco, most drowsiness-related crashes occur at night in low-traffic conditions on rural interstates or other rural highways. By and large these conditions are the opposite of the conditions experienced by Transco’s drivers, who spend most of their driving time on local roads at low speeds; • Its operations are characterized by multiple short driving periods interrupted by breaks, which precludes E:\FR\FM\18OCN1.SGM 18OCN1 khammond on DSK30JT082PROD with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 202 / Thursday, October 18, 2018 / Notices development of time-on-task fatigue and improves driver performance. Its drivers alternate between driving, unloading, and resting without spending significant continuous periods of time driving; • Its drivers have regular schedules and routes and return home after every trip. Approximately 85% of Transco’s drivers work fixed schedules and routes with minimal trip-to-trip variations. Transco’s trips begin and end at the same place. • Transco practices proactive safety management. In its application, Transco highlights several additional proactive safety management practices currently in place in connection with its grocery operations. These include DriveCam video monitoring; increased safety inspections and meetings; mandatory driver safety training; and manufacturerinstalled collision avoidance systems on the vehicles. According to Transco, as a result of these operational differences, the 30minute rest break requirement does not increase safety when applied to their drivers; instead, it claims the requirement may very well decrease road safety for its drivers. For the typical long-haul CMV driver, the 30minute rest break serves as an opportunity to break the monotony of driving and relieve some of the stress of continuous driving, but Transco’s drivers currently have breaks, which includes physical exercise, several times each day. Providing this exemption would in fact increase safety overall by reducing Transco’s mileage exposure, and thus crash risk, by over 4 million additional miles per year. Transco believes that the requested exemption would achieve a level of safety that is equivalent to, or greater than, the level of safety that would be obtained by complying with the current regulation. Transco gives the following reasons why the Agency should approve the exemption request: (1) Allowing its drivers to substitute a 30-minute onduty, non-driving break for a 30-minute off-duty break will not reduce safety; (2) No more than 50% of their logged time per working tour is ‘‘on-duty driving’’ time and the non-driving on-duty time is primarily devoted to pick-ups, deliveries and like operations; (3) They return to their point of origin at the end of their trip; (4) No driving is performed 14 hours after coming on duty; (5) Drivers do not drive if more than 8 hours have passed since the driver engaged in 30 consecutive minutes of on-duty non-driving activity; and, (6) The drivers operate CMVs equipped with electronic logging devices compliant with the Agency’s regulations or compliant automatic on-board VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:28 Oct 17, 2018 Jkt 247001 recorders for the period allowed for the use of such devices by FMCSA regulations. A copy of Transco’s application for exemptions is available for review in the docket for this notice. Issued on: October 12, 2018. Larry W. Minor, Associate Administrator for Policy. [FR Doc. 2018–22706 Filed 10–17–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–EX–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration [Docket No. FMCSA–2018–0271] Hours of Service of Drivers: RJR Transportation, Inc.; Application for Exemption Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), DOT. ACTION: Notice of application for exemption; request for comments. AGENCY: FMCSA announces that it has received an application from RJR Transportation, Inc. (RJR) requesting an exemption to increase the 100 air-mile radius in ‘‘short-haul operations’’ to 150 air-miles for its drivers. This would enable the drivers not exceeding the 150 air-mile radius to utilize time records instead of a complete record of duty status (RODS) for that day. RJR believes that the exemption, if granted, will achieve a level of safety equivalent to the level that would be achieved absent the exemption. FMCSA requests public comment on RJR’s application for exemption. SUMMARY: Comments must be received on or before November 19, 2018. ADDRESSES: You may submit comments identified by Federal Docket Management System Number FMCSA– 2018–0271 by any of the following methods: • Federal eRulemaking Portal: www.regulations.gov. See the Public Participation and Request for Comments section below for further information. • Mail: Docket Management Facility, U.S. Department of Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, West Building, Ground Floor, Room W12–140, Washington, DC 20590–0001. • Hand Delivery or Courier: West Building, Ground Floor, Room W12– 140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. E.T., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. • Fax: 1–202–493–2251. Each submission must include the Agency name and the docket number for DATES: PO 00000 Frm 00076 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 52875 this notice. Note that DOT posts all comments received without change to www.regulations.gov, including any personal information included in a comment. Please see the Privacy Act heading below. Docket: For access to the docket to read background documents or comments, go to www.regulations.gov at any time or visit Room W12–140 on the ground level of the West Building, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., ET, Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The on-line FDMS is available 24 hours each day, 365 days each year. Privacy Act: In accordance with 5 U.S.C. 553(c), DOT solicits comments from the public to better inform its rulemaking process. DOT posts these comments, without edit, including any personal information the commenter provides, to www.regulations.gov, as described in the system of records notice (DOT/ALL–14 FDMS), which can be reviewed at www.dot.gov/privacy. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mr. Richard Clemente, FMCSA Driver and Carrier Operations Division; Office of Carrier, Driver and Vehicle Safety Standards; Telephone: (202) 366–2722; Email: MCPSD@dot.gov. If you have questions on viewing or submitting material to the docket, contact Docket Services, telephone (202) 366–9826. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Public Participation and Request for Comments FMCSA encourages you to participate by submitting comments and related materials. Submitting Comments If you submit a comment, please include the docket number for this notice (FMCSA–2018–0271), indicate the specific section of this document to which the comment applies, and provide a reason for suggestions or recommendations. You may submit your comments and material online or by fax, mail, or hand delivery, but please use only one of these means. FMCSA recommends that you include your name and a mailing address, an email address, or a phone number in the body of your document so the Agency can contact you if it has questions regarding your submission. To submit your comment online, go to www.regulations.gov and put the docket number, ‘‘FMCSA–2018–0271’’ in the ‘‘Keyword’’ box, and click ‘‘Search.’’ When the new screen appears, click on ‘‘Comment Now!’’ button and type your comment into the text box in the following screen. Choose whether you E:\FR\FM\18OCN1.SGM 18OCN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 83, Number 202 (Thursday, October 18, 2018)]
[Notices]
[Pages 52873-52875]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2018-22706]



-----------------------------------------------------------------------



DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION



Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration



[Docket No. FMCSA-2018-0302]




Hours of Service of Drivers: Transco, Inc.; Application for 

Exemption



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 

Transco, Inc. (Transco) for an exemption from the 30-minute rest break 

provision of the Agency's hours-of-service (HOS) regulations for 

commercial motor vehicle (CMV) drivers. Transco requests that its 

drivers be permitted to comply with the 30-minute rest break 

requirement while performing on-duty, not-driving tasks. The requested 

exemption would apply to all Transco drivers in its grocery and food 

service divisions who make wholesale deliveries to grocery and 

convenience stores. Transco believes that the exemption, if granted, 

will achieve a level of safety equivalent to the level that would be 

achieved absent the exemption. FMCSA requests public comment on 

Transco's application for exemption.



DATES: Comments must be received on or before November 19, 2018.



ADDRESSES: You may submit comments identified by Federal Docket 

Management System (FDMS) Number FMCSA-2018-0302 by any of the following 

methods:

     Federal eRulemaking Portal: www.regulations.gov. See the 

Public Participation and Request for Comments section below for further 

information.

     Mail: Docket Management Facility, U.S. Department of 

Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., West Building, Ground 

Floor, Room W12-140, Washington, DC 20590-0001.

     Hand Delivery or Courier: West Building, Ground Floor, 

Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. 

E.T., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.

     Fax: 1-202-493-2251.

    Each submission must include the Agency name and the docket number 

for this notice. Note that DOT posts all comments received without 

change to www.regulations.gov, including any personal information 

included in a comment. Please see the Privacy Act heading below.

    Docket: For access to the docket to read background documents or



[[Page 52874]]



comments, go to www.regulations.gov at any time or visit Room W12-140 

on the ground level of the West Building, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, 

Washington, DC, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., ET, Monday through Friday, 

except Federal holidays. The on-line FDMS is available 24 hours each 

day, 365 days each year.

    Privacy Act: In accordance with 5 U.S.C. 553(c), DOT solicits 

comments from the public to better inform its rulemaking process. DOT 

posts these comments, without edit, including any personal information 

the commenter provides, to www.regulations.gov, as described in the 

system of records notice (DOT/ALL-14 FDMS), which can be reviewed at 

www.dot.gov/privacy.



FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mr. Richard Clemente, FMCSA Driver and 

Carrier Operations Division; Office of Carrier, Driver and Vehicle 

Safety Standards; Telephone: (202) 366-2722; Email: [email protected]. If 

you have questions on viewing or submitting material to the docket, 

contact Docket Services, telephone (202) 366-9826.



SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 



I. Public Participation and Request for Comments



    FMCSA encourages you to participate by submitting comments and 

related materials.



Submitting Comments



    If you submit a comment, please include the docket number for this 

notice (FMCSA-2018-0302), indicate the specific section of this 

document to which the comment applies, and provide a reason for 

suggestions or recommendations. You may submit your comments and 

material online or by fax, mail, or hand delivery, but please use only 

one of these means. FMCSA recommends that you include your name and a 

mailing address, an email address, or a phone number in the body of 

your document so the Agency can contact you if it has questions 

regarding your submission.

    To submit your comment online, go to www.regulations.gov and put 

the docket number, ``FMCSA-2018-0302'' in the ``Keyword'' box, and 

click ``Search.'' When the new screen appears, click on ``Comment 

Now!'' button and type your comment into the text box in the following 

screen. Choose whether you are submitting your comment as an individual 

or on behalf of a third party and then submit. If you submit your 

comments by mail or hand delivery, submit them in an unbound format, no 

larger than 8\1/2\ by 11 inches, suitable for copying and electronic 

filing. If you submit comments by mail and would like to know that they 

reached the facility, please enclose a stamped, self-addressed postcard 

or envelope. FMCSA will consider all comments and material received 

during the comment period.



II. Legal Basis



    FMCSA has authority under 49 U.S.C. 31136(e) and 31315 to grant 

exemptions from certain Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations. FMCSA 

must publish a notice of each exemption request in the Federal Register 

(49 CFR 381.315(a)). The Agency must provide the public an opportunity 

to inspect the information relevant to the application, including any 

safety analyses that have been conducted. The Agency must also provide 

an opportunity for public comment on the request.

    The Agency reviews safety analyses and public comments submitted, 

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 decision of 

the Agency must be published in the Federal Register (49 CFR 

381.315(b)) with the reasons for denying or granting the application 

and, if granted, the name of the person or class of persons receiving 

the exemption, and the regulatory provision from which the exemption is 

granted. The notice must also specify the effective period (up to 5 

years) and explain the terms and conditions of the exemption. The 

exemption may be renewed (49 CFR 381.300(b)).



III. Request for Exemption



    Transco seeks an exemption from the 30-minute rest break provision 

in 49 CFR 395.3(a)(3)(ii). Specifically, Transco requests an exemption 

that would allow its drivers to take a 30-minute on-duty, non-driving 

break in place of the 30-minute off-duty rest break currently required. 

McLane, Transco's parent company, is one of the nation's largest 

entities engaged in supply chain services, providing grocery and 

foodservice supply chain solutions for convenience stores, mass 

merchants, drug stores and restaurants throughout the United States. 

Approximately 3,580 Transco drivers would be eligible for the requested 

exemption. These drivers utilize approximately 1,700 CMVs in Transco's 

fleet, which consist almost exclusively of tractors equipped with 

sleeper berths, usually hauling 48 or 53-foot trailers. In most cases 

Transco's drivers operate in two-driver teams. Routes for these drivers 

include numerous, frequent stops to make deliveries of groceries to 

retailers. On these trips, Driver B goes directly into the sleeper 

berth at the beginning of the trip while Driver A conducts all pre-

departure inspection requirements and then drives to the first 

delivery. This allows Driver B to delay starting his duty period until 

a time that is less than 14 hours from the work tour completion, 

thereby ensuring compliance with the 14-hour rule. Depending on travel 

times, Driver B usually starts working sometime between the first and 

third delivery stop. When Driver B comes out of the sleeper berth, he 

or she rides in the passenger seat while Driver A drives between stops. 

The two drivers have overlapping working tours and unload together at 

most stops in the middle of the trip. Until the end of Driver A's 14-

hour duty period, the drivers may alternate driving and resting in the 

passenger seat between deliveries. Once Driver A reaches his or her 14-

hour limit, Driver A will often go into the sleeper berth, but is 

allowed to remain on duty and perform non-driving activities. 

Therefore, at some point, usually when approximately one-half of the 

driving for a work tour has been completed, Driver B will take over 

driving duties and Driver A will sit in the passenger seat between 

stops. Since Driver B did not begin his or her duty period until 

exiting the sleeper berth, Driver B will have sufficient time available 

to drive during the rest of the work tour. Similarly, because Driver A 

ceases driving when approximately one-half of the work tour has been 

completed, he or she does not drive beyond the 14 hour on-duty window 

in which driving is permitted. Total trip time averages 17.2 hours. 

However, total driving time for both drivers combined averages just 9.1 

hours. Each driver spends, on average, only 4.55 hours or 32.9% of 

their working tour engaged in driving, again much less than the 11 

hours maximum time allowed.

    Transco contends that itsoperations are characterized by several 

factors that make the driving involved low risk and less susceptible to 

the type of fatigue associated with long-haul driving for the following 

reasons:

     Transco's drivers operate largely on local roads at low 

speeds, which reduces fatigue risk. According to Transco, most 

drowsiness-related crashes occur at night in low-traffic conditions on 

rural interstates or other rural highways. By and large these 

conditions are the opposite of the conditions experienced by Transco's 

drivers, who spend most of their driving time on local roads at low 

speeds;

     Its operations are characterized by multiple short driving 

periods interrupted by breaks, which precludes



[[Page 52875]]



development of time-on-task fatigue and improves driver performance. 

Its drivers alternate between driving, unloading, and resting without 

spending significant continuous periods of time driving;

     Its drivers have regular schedules and routes and return 

home after every trip. Approximately 85% of Transco's drivers work 

fixed schedules and routes with minimal trip-to-trip variations. 

Transco's trips begin and end at the same place.

     Transco practices proactive safety management. In its 

application, Transco highlights several additional proactive safety 

management practices currently in place in connection with its grocery 

operations. These include DriveCam video monitoring; increased safety 

inspections and meetings; mandatory driver safety training; and 

manufacturer-installed collision avoidance systems on the vehicles.

    According to Transco, as a result of these operational differences, 

the 30-minute rest break requirement does not increase safety when 

applied to their drivers; instead, it claims the requirement may very 

well decrease road safety for its drivers. For the typical long-haul 

CMV driver, the 30-minute rest break serves as an opportunity to break 

the monotony of driving and relieve some of the stress of continuous 

driving, but Transco's drivers currently have breaks, which includes 

physical exercise, several times each day. Providing this exemption 

would in fact increase safety overall by reducing Transco's mileage 

exposure, and thus crash risk, by over 4 million additional miles per 

year.

    Transco believes that the requested exemption would achieve a level 

of safety that is equivalent to, or greater than, the level of safety 

that would be obtained by complying with the current regulation. 

Transco gives the following reasons why the Agency should approve the 

exemption request: (1) Allowing its drivers to substitute a 30-minute 

on-duty, non-driving break for a 30-minute off-duty break will not 

reduce safety; (2) No more than 50% of their logged time per working 

tour is ``on-duty driving'' time and the non-driving on-duty time is 

primarily devoted to pick-ups, deliveries and like operations; (3) They 

return to their point of origin at the end of their trip; (4) No 

driving is performed 14 hours after coming on duty; (5) Drivers do not 

drive if more than 8 hours have passed since the driver engaged in 30 

consecutive minutes of on-duty non-driving activity; and, (6) The 

drivers operate CMVs equipped with electronic logging devices compliant 

with the Agency's regulations or compliant automatic on-board recorders 

for the period allowed for the use of such devices by FMCSA 

regulations.

    A copy of Transco's application for exemptions is available for 

review in the docket for this notice.



    Issued on: October 12, 2018.

 Larry W. Minor,

Associate Administrator for Policy.

[FR Doc. 2018-22706 Filed 10-17-18; 8:45 am]

 BILLING CODE 4910-EX-P