A large New Jersey beverage distributor has requested that the company’s shorthaul drivers utilizing the record of duty status exception be allowed to return to their work-reporting location within 14 hours instead of the usual 12 hours, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration announced Aug. 3.
Allied Beverage Group, an interstate carrier with 186 commercial vehicles and 198 drivers, requested the exemption for all of its drivers who operate the company’s beverage trucks.
“Specifically, Allied requests that their beverage truck delivery drivers “be treated the same as drivers operating ready-mixed concrete delivery vehicles,” the request said.
That reference was to federal regulations that allow the drivers of a ready-mixed concrete delivery vehicle to return to their work-reporting location and be released from work within 14 consecutive hours without losing the shorthaul exception, the Allied Beverage exemption request said.
“The exemption is requested to simplify and eliminate the need for paper RODS or the cost of installing electronic logging devices needed for the recording of duty status between the 12th and 14th hour of duty when utilizing the shorthaul exception for operations within a 100-air-mile radius,” the request said.
Allied’s drivers, who operate on a four-day workweek, on occasion and at times during peak holiday seasons work past the 12th hour of duty, Allied said.
“They are in the same town doing multiple stops often crossing town lines only to return to complete a stop that was not open or required a specific time delivery,” the request said. “To log every event change is a difficult if not impossible task. At times, the CMV is in a particular area for at most several minutes.
“Employees’ total driving time for the day is minimal, with 25 to 35 stops — the majority of their time spent hand unloading their products. Allied operates two warehouses in New Jersey, dispatching so as to avoid traveling long distances.”
FMCSA said public comments on the request will be accepted for 30 days after publication in the Federal Register, scheduled for Aug. 6.