Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding announced that the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation has issued an exemption that will allow those transporting food, dairy and other essential goods to work longer hours as businesses seek to move products to market. Transportation bans of commercial haulers along eastern Pennsylvania interstates during this week’s winter storm prevented many agricultural producers from moving products like animals and milk.
PennDOT Secretary Leslie Richards issued the exemption, which is valid through 11:59 p.m. on Thursday, March 29.
The exemption extends the maximum driving time for certain motor carriers from 11 hours to 14 hours, followed by 10 consecutive hours off-duty before again driving. An exemption is also granted from the requirements of the “60/70-hour” rule. This rule requires drivers to stop driving upon accumulating 60 or 70 on-duty hours (including all on-duty and driving time) over a period of seven or eight consecutive days.
A driver may restart a seven or eight consecutive day period after taking 34 or more consecutive hours off duty. A period of seven or eight consecutive days may end with the beginning of any off-duty period of 34 or more consecutive hours.
Drivers are reminded that the waiver must be in their possession when traveling extended hours. This also only applies when the contents being transported are exclusively listed under the “Type of Operation.”
For the latest information regarding the state’s response emergency response efforts, visit www.pema.pa.gov.
The full text of the exemption follows:
Pursuant to the Proclamation of Disaster Emergency issued by the Governor and amended on March 6, 2018, 75 Pa. C.S. §6108, and the authority granted in 49 C.F.R. §390.23 and 67 Pa. Code Chapter 231, the waivers in this exemption apply to certain motor carriers engaged in operations necessary to respond to the emergency declared by the Governor. The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation hereby issues the following exemption:
TYPE OF OPERATION: Transportation of essential food, dairy products, and pharmaceuticals to food distribution, retail and wholesale food establishments and transportation and distribution of agricultural food.
EXTENT OF EXEMPTION: Requirement to comply with driver hour of service limitations.
EFFECTIVE DATE: March 21, 2018 0001 hours.
TERMINATION DATE: March 29, 2018 2359 hours.
1. This exemption applies statewide to the agricultural and pharmaceutical industry.
2. The maximum driving time is extended from 11 hours to 14 hours. Ten consecutive hours off-duty must be taken between the 14 hours of driving time.
3. Operators are exempted from the requirements of the 60/70 hour rule.
4. This waiver does not otherwise exempt these motor carriers and drivers from the Pennsylvania Vehicle Code (Title 75), or the Pennsylvania Crimes Code (Title 18.)
5. Title 67, Pennsylvania Code, Chapter 175, Vehicle Equipment and Inspection, remains in effect for all vehicles registered in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
DATE: March 21, 2018
Leslie S. Richards
Secretary of Transportation