Hours of Service of Drivers: Wolfe House Movers, LLC and Wolfe House Movers of Indiana, LLC; Application for Exemption, 64396-64397 [2019-25330]

Download as PDF 64396 Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 225 / Thursday, November 21, 2019 / Notices increase in safety risks associated with an 18.5 hour driving window. The applicant is essentially requesting that the 14-hour rule be extended by 4.5 hours in exchange for a 3-hour reduction in the driving-time limit. The Agency does not find this safety equivalency claim to be persuasive. The North Shore application does not analyze the safety impacts the requested exemption from the HOS regulations may cause nor does it provide countermeasures to ensure that the exemption would likely achieve a level of safety equivalent to, or greater than, the level that would be achieved by the current regulations. Furthermore, the applicant did not provide clear parameters that would have to be met to trigger the exemption. For these reasons, FMCSA denied the request for exemption. Issued on: November 14, 2019. Jim Mullen, Deputy Administrator. [FR Doc. 2019–25340 Filed 11–20–19; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–EX–P Standards; Telephone: 202–366–9220. Email: HOURSOFSERVICE@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 Viewing Comments and Documents To view comments, as well as documents mentioned in this preamble as being available in the docket, go to www.regulations.gov and insert the docket number, ‘‘FMCSA–2018–0235 in the ‘‘Keyword’’ box and click ‘‘Search.’’ Next, click the ‘‘Open Docket Folder’’ button and choose the document to review. If you do not have access to the internet, you may view the docket in person by visiting the Docket Management Facility in Room W12–140 on the ground floor of the DOT West Building, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., e.t., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. II. Legal Basis DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration [Docket No. FMCSA–2018–0235] Hours of Service of Drivers: Wolfe House Movers, LLC and Wolfe House Movers of Indiana, LLC; Application for Exemption Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), DOT. ACTION: Notice of final disposition; denial of application for exemption. AGENCY: FMCSA announces its decision to deny Wolfe House Movers, LLC and Wolfe House Movers of Indiana, LLC (Wolfe) an exemption from the hours-of-service (HOS) 60-hour/7day rule for its drivers engaged in transporting steel beams and dollies to and from various job sites for lifting and moving buildings. FMCSA has analyzed the exemption application and public comments, and has determined that the applicant would not achieve a level of safety that is equivalent to, or greater than, the level that would be achieved absent such exemption. FMCSA therefore denies Wolfe’s application for an exemption. DATES: This decision is effective November 21, 2019. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Ms. La Tonya Mimms, FMCSA Driver and Carrier Operations Division; Office of Carrier, Driver and Vehicle Safety SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:41 Nov 20, 2019 Jkt 250001 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 1276267), and Wolfe House Movers of Indiana, LLC (USDOT 1679025) (Wolfe) seek an exemption from the HOS PO 00000 Frm 00136 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 requirement 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 therefore 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 advised that its owners believe that Sunday is a day of rest and worship and refuse any business opportunities that would require Sunday work. Because Wolfe does not conduct business on Sunday, its commercial 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 asserted 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; this is unproductive and costly for the company. Wolfe asserted 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 on-duty limit 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 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 non-CMV E:\FR\FM\21NON1.SGM 21NON1 Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 225 / Thursday, November 21, 2019 / Notices 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’s application for exemption is available for review in the docket for this notice. V. Public Comments On October 18, 2018, FMCSA published notice of this application and requested public comment (83 FR 52872). The Agency received two comments. Mr. Michael Millard wrote, ‘‘If the FMCSA considers approving the request there should be additional requirements to address training on driver fatigue so drivers and supervisors can recognize the symptoms and not allow drivers to violate Part 392.3 regarding ill or fatigued drivers. If the petition is approved the carrier should only be allowed to use the 34-hour restart once every six days.’’ Mr. Stanley Roberts stated that ‘‘If they get a waiver then there would have to be waivers for several industries and businesses. I contend that the majority of their work would be considered regional at best and that their drivers are close enough to make it home on 60-hr/ 7-day rules.’’ VI. FMCSA Decision FMCSA has evaluated Wolfe’s application and the public comments and decided to deny Wolfe’s exemption request to operate up to 70 hours in a 6-day period; the company does not operate CMVs on Sundays. Wolfe did not demonstrate how operating up to 70 hours within 6 consecutive days of operations (compared to the limit of 60 hours within 6 consecutive days of operations) would maintain a level of safety equivalent to, or greater than, the level of safety that would be achieved without the exemption [49 CFR 381.305(a)]. The company did not provide any countermeasures (e.g., additional off-duty time, etc.) to address the approximately 17 percent increase in the maximum amount of on-duty time that may be accumulated before driving is prohibited. Issued on: November 15, 2019. Jim Mullen, Deputy Administrator. [FR Doc. 2019–25330 Filed 11–20–19; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–EX–P VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:41 Nov 20, 2019 Jkt 250001 DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration [Docket No. FMCSA–2019–0079] Hours of Service of Drivers: PJ Helicopters, Inc.; Application for Exemption Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), DOT. ACTION: Notice of final disposition; denial of application for exemption. AGENCY: FMCSA announces its decision to deny PJ Helicopters, Inc.’s (PJH) request for an exemption from the Federal hours-of-service (HOS) rules for its ground support equipment operators. The requested exemption would have allowed PJH’s ground support equipment operators a 16-hour window within which to complete all driving, and enable these operators to use an 8consecutive hour off-duty break, combined with at least two other offduty hours during the 16-hour window within which driving would be completed, in lieu of taking 10 consecutive hours off duty. FMCSA analyzed the exemption application and public comments and determined that the applicant would not achieve a level of safety that is equivalent to, or greater than, the level that would be achieved absent such exemption. 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: SUMMARY: I. Public Participation Viewing Comments and Documents To view comments, as well as documents mentioned in this preamble as being available in the docket, go to www.regulations.gov and insert the docket number, FMCSA–2019–0079, in the ‘‘Keyword’’ box and click ‘‘Search.’’ Next, click the ‘‘Open Docket Folder’’ button and choose the document to review. If you do not have access to the internet, you may view the docket online by visiting the Docket Management Facility in Room W12–140 on the ground floor of the DOT West Building, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., E.T., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. PO 00000 Frm 00137 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 64397 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 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 Agency must publish its decision 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 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 PJH’s exemption application states that the company has been serving the utility helicopter industry as an emergency response company for more than 45 years. Most of its customers are firefighting agencies, law enforcement agencies, and public utilities. PJH’s customers require timely responses and long hours when dealing with emergency-related incidents. PJH’s helicopters must be fueled and serviced in a timely fashion by its ground support crews. PJH requested an exemption from 49 CFR 395.3(a)(1) and (2) for its ground support equipment operators. The requested exemption would apply to approximately 32 ground support equipment operators, each of whom possesses a commercial driver’s license with applicable endorsements, including the tank vehicle endorsement. PJH states that it is an emergency response company contracted to agencies focused on public safety and that there currently are no exemption provisions in the 49 CFR part 395 for private companies that assist in emergency efforts. PJH’s Federal and State government contracts specify that ground support equipment operators must be available for a maximum of 14 E:\FR\FM\21NON1.SGM 21NON1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 84, Number 225 (Thursday, November 21, 2019)]
[Notices]
[Pages 64396-64397]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2019-25330]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

[Docket No. FMCSA-2018-0235]


Hours of Service of Drivers: Wolfe House Movers, LLC and Wolfe 
House Movers of Indiana, LLC; Application for Exemption

AGENCY: Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), DOT.

ACTION: Notice of final disposition; denial of application for 
exemption.

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SUMMARY: FMCSA announces its decision to deny Wolfe House Movers, LLC 
and Wolfe House Movers of Indiana, LLC (Wolfe) an exemption from the 
hours-of-service (HOS) 60-hour/7-day rule for its drivers engaged in 
transporting steel beams and dollies to and from various job sites for 
lifting and moving buildings. FMCSA has analyzed the exemption 
application and public comments, and has determined that the applicant 
would not achieve a level of safety that is equivalent to, or greater 
than, the level that would be achieved absent such exemption. FMCSA 
therefore denies Wolfe's application for an exemption.

DATES: This decision is effective November 21, 2019.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Ms. La Tonya Mimms, FMCSA Driver and 
Carrier Operations Division; Office of Carrier, Driver and Vehicle 
Safety Standards; Telephone: 202-366-9220. 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

Viewing Comments and Documents

    To view comments, as well as documents mentioned in this preamble 
as being available in the docket, go to www.regulations.gov and insert 
the docket number, ``FMCSA-2018-0235 in the ``Keyword'' box and click 
``Search.'' Next, click the ``Open Docket Folder'' button and choose 
the document to review. If you do not have access to the internet, you 
may view the docket in person by visiting the Docket Management 
Facility in Room W12-140 on the ground floor of the DOT West Building, 
1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590, between 9 a.m. and 5 
p.m., e.t., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.

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 1276267), and Wolfe House Movers of 
Indiana, LLC (USDOT 1679025) (Wolfe) seek an exemption from the HOS 
requirement 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 
therefore 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 
advised that its owners believe that Sunday is a day of rest and 
worship and refuse any business opportunities that would require Sunday 
work.
    Because Wolfe does not conduct business on Sunday, its commercial 
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 asserted 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 non-commercial 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; this is unproductive and 
costly for the company. Wolfe asserted 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 on-duty limit 
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 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 non-CMV

[[Page 64397]]

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's application for exemption is available for review 
in the docket for this notice.

V. Public Comments

    On October 18, 2018, FMCSA published notice of this application and 
requested public comment (83 FR 52872). The Agency received two 
comments.
    Mr. Michael Millard wrote, ``If the FMCSA considers approving the 
request there should be additional requirements to address training on 
driver fatigue so drivers and supervisors can recognize the symptoms 
and not allow drivers to violate Part 392.3 regarding ill or fatigued 
drivers. If the petition is approved the carrier should only be allowed 
to use the 34-hour restart once every six days.''
    Mr. Stanley Roberts stated that ``If they get a waiver then there 
would have to be waivers for several industries and businesses. I 
contend that the majority of their work would be considered regional at 
best and that their drivers are close enough to make it home on 60-hr/
7-day rules.''

VI. FMCSA Decision

    FMCSA has evaluated Wolfe's application and the public comments and 
decided to deny Wolfe's exemption request to operate up to 70 hours in 
a 6-day period; the company does not operate CMVs on Sundays. Wolfe did 
not demonstrate how operating up to 70 hours within 6 consecutive days 
of operations (compared to the limit of 60 hours within 6 consecutive 
days of operations) would maintain a level of safety equivalent to, or 
greater than, the level of safety that would be achieved without the 
exemption [49 CFR 381.305(a)]. The company did not provide any 
countermeasures (e.g., additional off-duty time, etc.) to address the 
approximately 17 percent increase in the maximum amount of on-duty time 
that may be accumulated before driving is prohibited.

    Issued on: November 15, 2019.
Jim Mullen,
Deputy Administrator.
[FR Doc. 2019-25330 Filed 11-20-19; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-EX-P