FMCSA has granted a waiver for expiring CDLs until June 30th

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Published by iTrucker at 24 Mar

FMCSA has granted a waiver for expiring CDLs until June 30th

“Waiver in Response to the COVID-19 Emergency –For States, CDL Holders, CLP Holders, and Interstate Drivers Operating Commercial Motor Vehicles.

March 24, 2020

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

ACTION: Grant of waiver.

SUMMARY: FMCSA grants, until June 30, 2020, a waiver from certain regulations applicable to interstate and intrastate commercial driver’s license (CDL) and commercial learner’s permit (CLP) holders and to other interstate drivers operating commercial motor vehicles (CMVs). The Agency has initiated this action in response to the President’s declaration of a national emergency under 42 U.S.C. § 5191(b) related to Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).

DATES: This waiver is effective March 20, 2020 and expires on June 30, 2020.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:  Ms. Nikki McDavid, Chief of the Commercial Driver’s License Division, Office of Safety Programs, 202-366-0831, Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590-0001.”- You can read at the official FMCSA Website

Background

The President has declared a national emergency under 42 U.S.C. § 5191(b) related to Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). This waiver is in response to COVID-19 outbreaks and their effects on people and the immediate risk they present to public health, safety, and welfare in the fifty States and the District of Columbia. Several States are experiencing greater than normal employee absences or have closed offices of their State Driver Licensing Agencies in response to the guidance from the U.S. Center for Disease Control to use social distancing to reduce the spread of COVID-19. As a result, many CDL and CLP holders are unable to renew their CDLs and CLPs and are unable to provide medical certificates to their State Driver Licensing Agencies. In addition, many medical providers nationwide have canceled regularly scheduled appointments to dedicate resources to the COVID-19 response. As a result, drivers are unable to obtain appointments for physical examinations with medical examiners to comply with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSRs). Given the national emergency, there is a public need for immediate transportation of essential supplies, equipment, and persons, which requires an adequate and sustained supply of CDL holders, CLP holders, and drivers operating CMVs (non-CDL drivers). This waiver provides needed relief from specified FMCSRs for CDL holders, CLP holders, and non-CDL drivers.

FMCSA’s Determination and Regulatory Provisions Waived

Consistent with the statutory requirements for waivers, FMCSA has determined that it is in the public interest to issue a waiver, limited in scope and circumstances, that is likely to achieve a level of safety that is equivalent to, or greater than, the level of safety that would be obtained in the absence of the waiver until June 30, 2020.

To respond to this unique event and to continue the ability of intrastate and interstate CDL and CLP holders and interstate non-CDL drivers to transport goods in response to the COVID-19 emergency, this waiver:

  • Extends until June 30, 2020 the maximum period of CDL validity by waiving 49 CFR 383.73(b)(9) and 383.73(d)(6) for CDLs due for renewal on or after March 1, 2020.
  • Extends until June 30, 2020 the maximum period of CLP validity by waiving 49 CFR 383.73(a)(2)(iii) and 383.25(c) for CLPs that are due for renewal on or after March 1, 2020, without requiring the CLP holders to retake the general and endorsement knowledge tests.
  • Waives the requirement under 49 CFR 383.25(e) that CLP holders wait 14 days to take the CDL skills test.
  • Waives the requirement under 49 CFR 391.45 that CDL holders, CLP holders, and non-CDL drivers have a medical examination and certification, provided that they have proof of a valid medical certification that was issued for a period of 90 days or longer and that expired on or after March 1, 2020. e.
  • Waives the requirement under 49 CFR 383.71(h)(3) that, in order to maintain the medical certification status of “certified,” CDL or CLP holders provide the State Driver Licensing Agency with an original or copy of a subsequently issued medical examiner’s certificate, provided that they have proof of a valid medical certification that expired on or after March 1, 2020.
  • Waives the requirement under 49 CFR 383.73(o)(2) that the State Driver Licensing Agency change the CDL or CLP holder’s medical certification status to “not certified” upon the expiration of the medical examiner’s certificate or medical variance, provided that the CDL or CLP holders have proof of a valid medical certification that expired on or after March 1, 2020.
  • Waives the requirements under 49 CFR 383.73(o)(4) that the State Driver Licensing Agency initiate a CDL or CLP downgrade upon the expiration of the medical examiner’s certificate or medical variance, provided that the CDL or CLP holders have proof of a valid medical certification or medical variance that expired on or after March 1, 2020.
  • In accordance with 49 CFR 383.23(a)(1) and 391.41(a)(1)(i), FMCSA continues to recognize the validity of commercial driver’s licenses issued by Canadian Provinces and Territories and Licencias Federales de Conductor issued by the United Mexican States, in accordance with 49 CFR part 383, when such jurisdictions issue a similar notice or declaration extending the validity date of the medical examination and certification and/or validity of the corresponding commercial driver’s license due to interruption to government service resulting from COVID-19.

States, CDL holders, CLP holders, and interstate non-CDL CMV drivers are covered under this waiver without further action.

FMCSA will not issue a finding of noncompliance under 49 CFR part 384 against States for action or inaction consistent with this waiver.

FMCSA’s legal authorities extend to waiver of the maximum period under the FMCSRs for State issuance of CDLs (8-years).  While many States have adopted the maximum 8-year renewal period, other States have adopted shorter periods, and waiving the 8-year limit would provide no relief to drivers with CDLs issued by those States.  In the interest of effectively providing automatic CDL renewal relief for as many drivers with recently expired CDLs as possible, FMCSA is therefore issuing a separate Notice of Enforcement Policy stating that, through June 30, 2020, the Agency will not take enforcement against drivers for operation of a CMV if the driver held a valid CDL on February 29, 2020, or against motor carriers for use of such a driver.  Most States have adopted the full 1-year maximum period of CLP validity, but FMCSA is similarly including its Enforcement Policy a comparable provision on non-enforcement of recently expired CLPs.” – According to FMCSA

Read the full FMCSA CDL Waiver HERE at fmcsa.dot.gov/emergency/fmcsa-cdl-waiver-32420

Source: fmcsa.dot.gov/emergency/fmcsa-cdl-waiver-32420

Credits: fmcsa.dot.gov /  iTrucker  / Mario Pawlowski 

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