May 29, 2019 12:45 PM, EDT

Ohio Trash Collection and Recycling Carrier Seeks Exemption From HOS Shorthaul Requirements

Kimble Recycling & Disposal Inc. has requested a five-year exemption from federal hours-of-service shorthaul requirements, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration announced in a May 28 Federal Register document.

Specifically, Kimble is requesting that its shorthaul commercial motor vehicle drivers be permitted to return to their home bases within 14 hours, instead of 12 hours, without losing their shorthaul status.

In its application, Kimble said it employs approximately 320 drivers who operate commercial vehicles to collect waste and recycling materials.

Kimble Recycling & Disposal logo

“These drivers routinely qualify for the shorthaul exception, however, occasionally they cannot complete their duty day within 12 hours,” said Kimble, based in Cambridge, Ohio. “Electronic logging devices delay and distract its drivers working to collect waste and recycling materials because they require excessive interaction.”

The carrier’s exemption application states that, as a result of frequent stops to pick up trash, its drivers are required to interact with the ELD “hundreds if not thousands of times a day.”

ELDs are not designed to accommodate the company driver operations, Kimble said.

FMCSA said it will accept public comment on the request through June 27.

FMCSA logo

The agency reviews safety analyses and public comments 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.

The trash collection company said that certain drivers already operate up to 14 hours without forfeiting shorthaul status such as those in the ready-mixed concrete industry or the asphalt-paving business. “It asserts that KRD’s operations are similar to these industries because its drivers spend a significant portion of their days conducting nondriving duties,” FMCSA said.

If the exemption were granted, Kimble said it would implement several fatigue-management programs and processes including: Observation Program, Routeware DriveCam, Video Event Recorder Program and its fatigued-driver process.

In the long term, such exemptions could no longer be required if FMCSA expands the current 100 air-mile shorthaul exemption from 12 hours on-duty to 14 hours on-duty, to be consistent with the workday rules for longhaul truck drivers.

Officials say they could announce adjustments to driver hours-of-service in a proposed rulemaking that could be made public as soon as June 7.