States Waive HOS for Fuel Deliveries Amid Severe Weather

Extreme Cold Prompts Efforts to Prevent Shortages
fuel truck in winter
Many states are waiving HOS requirements for fuel deliveries. (Charles Krupa/AP file photo)

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Governors from several states have issued emergency proclamations waiving federal hours-of-service requirements for truckers carrying fuel, to prevent shortages to safeguard people due to extreme cold weather.

Although some states issued orders several days ago that soon expire, others with longer duration emergency orders are Alabama, Arkansas, Indiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, New York, North Carolina, South Dakota and Tennessee.

Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey’s proclamation bans price gouging for the sale or rental of any commodity or rental facility Jan. 14-27. It also waives HOS requirements for 30 days from Jan. 14 for truckers bringing emergency- or disaster-related supplies, goods and services to assist with the extreme weather emergency.

Ivey also instructed relevant transportation agencies in the state to arrange necessary documents to assist with the movement of equipment and supplies. For example, the state department of transportation is allowed to issue waivers for vehicles or combinations of vehicles and (divisible/nondivisible) loads with weights, dimensions or combinations exceeding maximum legal limits. Transporters must display proper vehicle markings, flags and oversize signs, and have escorts as defined in Alabama’s procedures. Alabama’s order doesn’t waive insurance requirements or weight limits on bridges.

Kay Ivey


Arkansas Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders waived HOS regulations through Jan. 26 for commercial vehicles carrying heavy equipment, oversized loads, electric power equipment and essential goods to people (groceries, medical and pharmaceutical items) and animals (poultry and livestock).

Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb’s emergency order, which expires Jan. 25, halts HOS regulations for truckers transporting propane gas that is used by 500,000 Hoosiers for heating homes, businesses, schools and public buildings.

The order, signed Jan. 15, said current demand exceeds local supplies, forcing distributors there “to experience shortages in supply, long lines at terminals, and related transportation challenges such as a shortage of drivers and the necessity for existing drivers to travel longer distances in search of propane gas.”


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Extreme freezing temperatures and severe winter weather prompted Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves on Jan. 16 to waive HOS regulations through Jan. 30 for transporting fuel and other essential goods.

Nebraska’s emergency order by Gov. Jim Pillen lasts for 30 days from its issuance Jan. 12 to waive HOS drive time regulations for drivers “hauling residential heating fuel and oils or fuel used to generate power for residential heating into or within Nebraska.” Drivers operating under this order must carry a copy of the state declaration to prove their direct support to Nebraska during the emergency.

New York Gov. Kathy Hochul’s HOS waiver (Jan. 12-Feb. 11) “is necessary to ensure that crews can clear vital roadways and hasten the movement of utility power restoration crews into New York state.”

North Carolina’s HOS waiver order expires Feb. 8. Gov. Roy Cooper declared a statewide emergency Jan. 8 and temporarily waived/suspended motor vehicle regulations. He directed that the HOS waiver applies to drivers transporting:

  • Essential fuels, food, water, nonalcoholic beverages, medical supplies, feed for livestock and poultry
  • Livestock, poultry and crops ready to be harvested
  • Vehicles used to restore utilities and transportation services
South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem


South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem’s HOS waiver remains in effect until Feb. 11 for the transportation and delivery of residential heating fuels into or within the state. Noem noted when she issued the Jan. 12 order that state residents faced “extremely low inventories and outages of residential heating fuels and the return of normal supply flows to fuel terminals in South Dakota is unknown.”

Patrick Sheehan, director of the Tennessee Emergency Management Agency, declared a winter weather emergency and fuel transportation regulatory relief order Jan. 13 under authority granted by the governor.

Through Jan. 27, HOS is waived for commercial motor vehicle operators who are providing fuels (including fuel oil, diesel, gasoline, kerosene, propane, liquid petroleum, and other refined petroleum products and heating fuels).

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