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Newsletter
Volume 120
November 1, 2013
A Celebration of Ford B. WestFord B. West Retirement Party
The Fertilizer Institute hosted a dinner and festivities on October 22nd celebrating Ford West's retirement and honoring him for his commitment to the fertilizer industry for 34 years. More than 100 of Ford's family, friends, members and associates spanning his career were in attendance. The dinner was held at the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C. where the audience rose to their feet numerous times as story after story of his contribution to the fertilizer industry was shared. We'll miss his "aw, shucks" demeanor noted for disarming audiences and opening the door for dialogue that would not have occurred with any other approach. Thank you Ford! Congratulations - we wish you a happy and healthy retirement!
Special Delivery!
Brian and his wife Holly recently received a special visit from the stork. They announced the birth of a bouncing baby boy, Jaxton Thomas Mason, born on October 25, 2013, weighing in at 7 pounds, 3 ounces and almost 21 inches long. Congratulations on the new arrival!
Spotlight: Willard Agri-Services
Willard Agri-Services recently received unanimous approval from the Kent County Levy Court to expand its fertilizer plant at Green-wood, DE. Officials gave Willard accolades for its past environmental performance and recognition, such as the National Environmental Respect Award. The expansion is expected to be undertaken over the next 10 years on an as-needed basis on the plant's 56-acre site. Willard, at its Frederick, MD, plant, was one of the first in the country to manufacture liquid fertilizers and has grown to serve the needs of agriculture in Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, Delaware and New Jersey. Our congratulations go to Willard's management and staff!
Head Start Program Receives Innovation Award
The "Head Start" Ag Safety Program was entered in the Illinois Community College Administrators Association contest this past spring by Bill Harmon, Professor of Agriculture at Lincoln Land Community College. Harmon worked with the Illinois Fertilizer and Chemical Association (IFCA) and the Asmark Institute to provide training to a group of Lincoln Land Community College students. The students were trained and certified in subjects such as confined space entry, hazardous materials and other safety topics. The training, provided at the Agricenter in Bloomington, IL, received the 2013 Innovation Award from the Illinois Council of Community College Administrators (ICCCA). The goals of the training were to educate students about industry regulations and reduce farm accidents. Rich Teeter, Assistant Professor of Agriculture, coordinated the program with Kevin Runkle, Regulatory Affairs Manager with IFCA, which will now be offered to other community colleges and further unite education and industry.
OSHA Uses Crystal Ball to Cite West Fertilizer
While ATF investigators say that ammonium nitrate was detonated in the explosion at the West Fertilizer plant, they don't know how the blast was initiated. They say the origin of the fire that preceded the explosion was in the fertilizer and seed building, but the cause of the fire has not been determined. ATF officials still consider the site a crime scene, preventing the Chemical Safety Board from conducting a thorough investigation into the cause - so we will probably never know with any certainty actually what happened. OSHA, on the other hand, seemed to have used their crystal ball to conjure up 24 violations totaling $118,000 notably during the recent shutdown of the government. OSHA's actions are reprehensible, especially considering many of the violations are based on 29 CFR 1910.109, the explosives standard which has not been proven to be applicable to an agricultural facility like West to begin with. Other violations are equally questionable as they deal with issues destroyed in the explosion. The details of the citation were released even though the government was shut down - all this while our government didn't have what little it took to honor our war heroes, but could come up with the resources to beat up a dead company.
Happy 20th Anniversary, CCA Program!
The Certified Crop Adviser (CCA) program celebrates its 20th anniversary this year and continues to strive for excellence in agriculture by challenging agronomists to maintain their expertise.
Bill Signed Requiring Sleep Apnea Test For Drivers
On October 15, 2013, President Obama signed a bill (H.R. 3095) requiring DOT to use a formal rule making process if they wish to require sleep apnea testing for commercial truck drivers. Many doctors have been using their discretion to require commercial truck drivers to submit to a sleep apnea test prior to issuance of a medical card. This was based on information provided by DOT, which was construed as guidance by many doctors. In order for a sleep apnea test to be a regulatory requirement prior to issuance of a medical card, DOT now has to address the issue through the formal rulemaking process by writing a rule requiring a sleep apnea test, which will be open for public comment. Sleep apnea testing for commercial truck drivers will most likely be based on medical criteria and a person's propensity to be diagnosed with sleep apnea. The rulemaking process is anticipated to take several months before sleep apnea testing is a requirement.
OSHA's Top 10 violations for 2013 Announced
Once again, fall protection tops the list of OSHA's most-cited workplace safety violations. OSHA's top 10 violations for 2013 were announced at the National Safety Council Congress & Expo. The preliminary figures for 2013 Top 10 are:
1.
1926.501
Fall Protection
8,241 total violations
2.
1910.1200
Hazard Communication
6,156 total violations
3.
1926.451
Scaffolding
5,423 total violations
4.
1901.134
Respiratory Protection
3,879 total violations
5.
1901.305
Electrical, Wiring Methods
3,452 total violations
6.
1910.178
Powered Industrial Trucks
3,340 total violations
7.
1926.1053
Ladders
3,311 total violations
8.
1910.147
Lockout/Tagout
3,254 total violations
9.
1910.303
Electrical, General Requirements
2,745 total violations
10.
1910.212
Machine Guarding
2,701 total violations
DOT Withdraws Proposal to Revise Entry-level Driver Training
DOT withdrew its December 26, 2007 notice of propopaddinsed rulemaking (NPRM) that proposed new entry-level driver training standards for individuals applying for a commercial driver's license (CDL) to operate commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) in interstate commerce. The Agency withdrew the 2007 proposal because commenters to the NPRM, and participants in the Agency's public listening sessions in 2013, raised substantive issues which have led the Agency to conclude that it would be inappropriate to move forward with a final rule based on the proposal. DOT is expected to initiate a new rulemaking.
CVSA Posts Roadcheck 2013 Numbers
Commercial vehicle inspectors across North America completed 73,023 truck and bus inspections during 72 hours of Roadcheck 2013, the annual enforcement and safety outreach campaign carried out by the members of the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA). Roadcheck 2013 took place June 4-6, with approximately 1,000 commercial vehicles inspected every hour during the 72-hour event.
Of those inspections, a total of 47,771 were North American Standard Level I inspections - the most comprehensive roadside inspection, in which vehicles and drivers are assessed for violations of federal, state or Canadian provincial safety regulations. Of Level I inspections, 24.1 percent were found with Out-of-Service (OOS) violations.
Cargo securement-related violations represented 11.7 percent of all OOS violations issued during the event, down slightly from 12.3 percent in 2012. Although this equates to only one out of every 50 vehicles inspected, loss of a load by a commercial truck is always a severe risk to safety. Inspectors always watch for signs of improperly secured loads such as inadequate number of tie downs, damaged webbing or chain and other load-securement violations.
Brakes routinely stand out in the mix of OOS violations issued during Roadcheck. This year, 49.6 percent of vehicle OOS violations were related to brake adjustment and other brake system violations.
DOT Publishes Rules on Railroad Crossings
DOT has amended the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSRs) and Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMRs) to prohibit a driver of a commercial motor vehicle or of a motor vehicle transporting certain hazardous materials or certain agents or toxins from entering onto a highway-rail grade crossing unless there is sufficient space to drive completely through the grade crossing without stopping. The intent of this rulemaking is to reduce highway-rail grade crossing crashes. This rule went into effect on October 25, 2013.
New PPE Standards for Agrium Terminals
Agrium's Wholesale division notified customers that it has adopted new Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) minimum requirements for anyone entering Agrium distribution terminals. The new PPE requirements are designed to improve safety.
For anhydrous ammonia transfers/rail and truck loading, the new minimum PPE standards require individuals to wear a long-sleeved shirt; long pants; chemical gloves; a chemical apron or suit; leather or rubber safety boots with a safety toe; a full-face respirator, to be worn while connecting or disconnecting a loading hose or arm; and a hard hat and sealed eyewear or goggles to be worn while the respirator is not in use.
For UAN solution and ammonium polyphosphate (10-34-0) truck loading, the minimum PPE requires a long sleeve shirt; long pants; chemical gloves; leather or rubber safety boots with a safety toe; and a hard hat and splash goggles.
For dry fertilizer transfers/rail and truck loading, the minimum PPE requires a long-sleeved shirt; long pants; chemical gloves; leather or rubber safety boots with a safety toe; a hard hat; and sealed eyewear or goggles.
Agrium told customers that it is "encouraging everyone to implement these changes immediately," though the new requirements will not take effect until January 1, 2014. After that date, Agrium said it "will not load carriers who are not in compliance" with the new PPE standards.
Unified Registration System Final Rule
On August 23, 2013, DOT published a final rule known as the Unified Registration System (URS). The rule amends its regulations requiring interstate motor carriers, freight forwarders, brokers, intermodal equipment providers, hazardous materials safety permit applicants and cargo tank facilities under DOT jurisdiction, to submit required registration and biennial update information to the Agency using a new electronic on-line Unified Registration System.
The implementation of the URS final rule consolidates the following registration and information systems:
  • The USDOT identification number system;
  • The commercial registration system to obtain for-hire operating authority/MC Number;
  • The financial responsibility information system; and
  • The service of process agent designation system.
URS is designed to streamline the registration process and serve as a clearinghouse and repository of information on, and identification of, all entities required to register with DOT. The provisions and their impact to your operations are outlined below.
Effective November 1, 2013:
  • The MCS-150 form is being replaced by the online registration MCSA-1 form.
  • All new USDOT applicants and entities required to submit a biennial update will be required to complete their update online using the MCSA-1 form. (Refer to biennial update schedule below).
  • DOT will issue a warning letter 30 days prior to your biennial update deadline.
  • Failure to file an update will result in inactivation of your USDOT Number and you will be prohibited from operating.
  • If you change your legal company name, form of business or address, you must notify DOT within 30 days.
  • Use the following schedule to determine when your biennial update is due:
USDOT Number Ending In:
Must file by last day of:
1
January
2
February
3
March
4
April
5
May
6
June
7
July
8
August
9
September
0
October
  • If the next to last digit of your USDOT number is odd, you must file your update in every odd-numbered calendar year.
  • If the next to last digit of your USDOT number is even, you must file your update in every even-numbered calendar year.
Effective October 23, 2015:
  • To continue legal operations, you will be required to have your insurance agent file proof of liability insurance with DOT.
  • New applicant DOT numbers will not become active until all filing requirements have been met.
  • New operating authority applicants will no longer be issued a separate MC, MX or FF number.
  • New USDOT number applicants will be required to pay $300.
Effective April 25, 2016:
  • To continue legal operations, you will be required to designate a process agent using Federal Form BOC-3. (A process agent is a representative upon whom court papers may be served).
Comment Period Open on Phase II Fumigant Label
EPA is in the process of the re-licensing decisions for the following soil fumigants (RED's):
  • Metam Sodium/Metam potassium
  • Methyl Bromide
  • Chloropicrin
  • Dazomet
The comment period is open until November 25, 2013. Click here to review additional information and provide comment.
MAP-21 Provisions Incorporated into FMCSRs
DOT adopted, as a final rule, certain regulations required by the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (MAP-21) surface transportation reauthorization legislation.
The majority of these statutory changes went into effect on October 1, 2012, while others went into effect on October 1, 2013. It was necessary to make conforming changes to ensure that FMCSA's regulations are current and consistent with the applicable statutes. Petitions for Reconsideration must be received by the Agency no later than December 2, 2013.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSRs) amended by this final rule encompass diverse subject areas. The amendments are explained below:
- Safety Fitness of New Operators. Previously new entrant motor carriers were required to undergo a safety review within 18 months of beginning operations. MAP-21 changed that time period to 12 months for property carriers and 120 days for passenger carriers. (Section 32102)
- Increased Penalties for Operating Without Registration. Previously the civil penalty for violating the Agency's reporting, recordkeeping and registration requirements was set at $500, except for violations of passenger carrier registration requirements, which were set at $2,000. MAP-21 increased the penalties to $1,000 for violating the reporting and recordkeeping requirements, $10,000 for non-passenger carrier registration violations and $25,000 for passenger carrier registration violations. It also changed the penalty for transporting hazardous wastes without the appropriate registration from a maximum of $20,000 to a minimum of $20,000 and maximum of $40,000. (Section 32108)
- Revocation of Registration and Other Penalties for Failure To Respond to Subpoena. Previously, 49 U.S.C. 525 provided for a fine of between $100 and $5,000 for motor carriers that failed to obey a subpoena or an Agency order to appear or testify issued under 49 U.S.C. Chapter 5. MAP-21 amended the penalties in that section by raising the fine to between $1,000 and $10,000. (Section 32110)
- Fleetwide Out of Service Order for Operating Without Required Registration. Previously, 49 U.S.C. 13902(e)(1) provided that if a motor vehicle was used to provide transportation without or beyond the scope of registration, that motor vehicle could be put out of service. MAP-21 changed Section 13902(e)(1) to authorize FMCSA to place a motor carrier out of service for operating vehicles without or beyond the scope of registration. (Section 32111)
- State Reporting of Foreign Commercial Driver Convictions. Section 32203(a) of MAP-21 amended 49 U.S.C. 31301 by adding a definition of "foreign commercial driver." This final rule amends 49 CFR 383.5 to add this definition. MAP-21 amended 49 U.S.C. 31311(a) by adding a requirement that states report foreign commercial drivers' convictions related to the operation of both commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) and non-CMVs to FMCSA's Federal Convictions and Withdrawal Database. Section 32203(b) also added the requirement that states report unlicensed or non-CDL foreign drivers' convictions related to the operation of a CMV to the Federal Convictions and Withdrawal Database. (Section 32203)
- Authority To Disqualify Foreign Commercial Drivers. Previously enacted 49 U.S.C. 31310 sets forth the criteria for disqualifying CMV operators. MAP-21 amended that section by stating explicitly that the disqualification criteria also apply to foreign commercial drivers. (Section 32204)
- Revocation of Foreign Motor Carrier Operating Authority for Failure To Pay Civil Penalties. MAP-21 amended 49 U.S.C. 13905(d)(2) to state explicitly that the Agency's authority to suspend, amend, and revoke motor carrier operating authority registration applies to foreign motor carriers. This final rule amends 49 CFR 386.84 to reflect this change. The final rule also makes a technical correction to Sec. 386.84. That section contains a reference to 49 CFR part 386 Appendix A (h) that was not updated after that paragraph was re-numbered. (Section 32205)
- Employer Responsibilities. Previously, 49 U.S.C. 31304 prohibited employers from allowing employees to operate CMVs when the employer knew that the employee had lost the right to operate a CMV or was disqualified, or when the employee's driver's license was suspended, revoked or canceled. MAP-21 amended that section to prohibit employers from allowing employees to drive when the employer knows or should reasonably know that those circumstances exist. (Section 32307)
- Inspection Demand and Display of Credentials. MAP-21 amended 49 U.S.C. 504(c) to include employees of states that receive Motor Carrier Safety Assistance Program (MCSAP) grants as among those authorized to conduct inspections of certain equipment and records upon display of proper credentials. In addition, Section 32501 amended 49 U.S.C. 504(c) by specifying that the credentials of authorized individuals may be presented either in person or in writing. (Section 32501)
- Penalties for Violation of Operation Out of Service Orders. MAP-21 amended 5 U.S.C. 521 to add a $25,000 penalty for motor carriers operating CMVs in violation of an out-of-service order issued following a determination that the carrier is unfit or an imminent hazard. (Section 32503)
- Increased Penalties for Evasion of Regulations. Previously, 49 U.S.C. 524 provided the following penalties for knowing and willful violations of 49 U.S.C. Chapter 5: $200-$500 for a first violation and $250-$2,000 for a subsequent violation. Section 32505 of MAP-21 amended this provision by removing the knowing and willful requirement; expanding the scope of applicable violations to include 49 U.S.C. Chapter 51, Subchapter III of Chapter 311 (except Sec. 31138 and 31139), Sec. 31302, 31303, 31304, 31305(b), 31310(g)(1)(A), and 31502, and any regulation issued under those provisions; and increasing the penalty for a first violation to $2,000-$5,000 and subsequent violations to $2,500-$7,000. This final rule adds new paragraph (i) to 49 CFR part 386, Appendix B, to implement these amendments. (Section 32505)
- Violations Relating to CMV Safety Regulation and Operators. Previously, 49 U.S.C. 521(b)(2)(D) directed the Agency to take into account the following factors when assessing a civil penalty: The nature, circumstances, extent and gravity of the violation committed and, with respect to the violator, the degree of culpability, history of prior offenses, ability to pay, effect on ability to continue to do business and such other matters as justice and public safety may require. MAP-21 amended 49 U.S.C. 521(b)(2)(D) by removing "ability to pay" from this list. (Section 32506)
- Emergency Disqualification for Imminent Hazard. Previously, 49 U.S.C. 31310(f) provided for the emergency disqualification of an individual from operating a CMV, if continued operation would constitute an imminent hazard, as defined at 49 U.S.C. 5102. MAP-21 amended Sec. 31310(f) by changing the meaning of "imminent hazard" to include the definition at 49 U.S.C. 521. (Section 32507)
- Motor Carrier Safety Assistance Program. MAP-21 amended 49 U.S.C. 31102(b) by identifying local government agencies as MCSAP partners and establishing four program goals. This final rule amends 49 CFR 350.103 to incorporate these new elements. Section 32601(a)(4) amended the requirements, codified at 49 U.S.C. 31102(b), for state participation in the MCSAP grant program. This final rule amends 49 CFR 350.201 (n) and (s) and adds new Sec. 350.201(z) and Sec. 350.211(22) to reflect these changes. Section 32601(a)(5) amended requirements, codified at 49 U.S.C. 31102(b), for the states' maintenance of effort and average level of expenditure under the MCSAP grant plans. (Section 32601)
- Waivers, Exemptions and Pilot Programs. Section 32913(b) amended the requirements, codified at 49 U.S.C. 31315(b), for a person to request an exemption from certain Agency requirements. The amendment requires the person's licensing state to inform roadside enforcement personnel of the exemption, after having received notice from FMCSA. New 49 CFR 350.201(z), discussed above, also implements this change. Previously, 49 U.S.C. 31315(c)(1) required FMCSA to publish notice of all pilot programs in the Federal Register. Section 32913(c) retained the requirement that the Agency publish notices of pilot programs, but removed the requirement that they be published in the Federal Register. (Section 32913)
- Financial Security of Brokers and Freight Forwarders. Previously, 49 U.S.C. 13906 required brokers to maintain a bond to ensure that the transportation contracted for was actually provided, but left the amount of the bond to the Agency's discretion. MAP-21 amended that section to set a minimum of $75,000 and extended the bond requirement to freight forwarders as well. (Section 32918)
- Civil Penalties. Previously, 49 U.S.C. 5123 provided for penalties of between $250 and $50,000 for violations of regulations related to the transportation of hazardous materials. For violations that resulted in "death, serious illness or severe injury to any person or substantial destruction of property," it provided for penalties of up to $100,000. MAP-21 amended Sec. 5123 to provide for penalties of up to $75,000 for violations of regulations related to the transportation of hazardous materials and $175,000 in the event of death, serious illness, severe injury or substantial destruction of property. (Section 33010)
2013 Asmark Institute, Inc. This information is believed to be reliable by the Asmark Institute, however, because of constantly changing government regulations, interpretations and applicability or the possibility of human, mechanical or computer error, the Asmark Institute does not guarantee the information as suitable for any particular purpose.
A Celebration of Ford B. WestFord B. West Retirement Party
The Fertilizer Institute hosted a dinner and festivities on October 22nd celebrating Ford West's retirement and honoring him for his commitment to the fertilizer industry for 34 years. More than 100 of Ford's family, friends, members and associates spanning his career were in attendance. The dinner was held at the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C. where the audience rose to their feet numerous times as story after story of his contribution to the fertilizer industry was shared. We'll miss his "aw, shucks" demeanor noted for disarming audiences and opening the door for dialogue that would not have occurred with any other approach. Thank you Ford! Congratulations - we wish you a happy and healthy retirement!
Special Delivery!
Brian and his wife Holly recently received a special visit from the stork. They announced the birth of a bouncing baby boy, Jaxton Thomas Mason, born on October 25, 2013, weighing in at 7 pounds, 3 ounces and almost 21 inches long. Congratulations on the new arrival!
Spotlight: Willard Agri-Services
Willard Agri-Services recently received unanimous approval from the Kent County Levy Court to expand its fertilizer plant at Green-wood, DE. Officials gave Willard accolades for its past environmental performance and recognition, such as the National Environmental Respect Award. The expansion is expected to be undertaken over the next 10 years on an as-needed basis on the plant's 56-acre site. Willard, at its Frederick, MD, plant, was one of the first in the country to manufacture liquid fertilizers and has grown to serve the needs of agriculture in Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, Delaware and New Jersey. Our congratulations go to Willard's management and staff!
Head Start Program Receives Innovation Award
The "Head Start" Ag Safety Program was entered in the Illinois Community College Administrators Association contest this past spring by Bill Harmon, Professor of Agriculture at Lincoln Land Community College. Harmon worked with the Illinois Fertilizer and Chemical Association (IFCA) and the Asmark Institute to provide training to a group of Lincoln Land Community College students. The students were trained and certified in subjects such as confined space entry, hazardous materials and other safety topics. The training, provided at the Agricenter in Bloomington, IL, received the 2013 Innovation Award from the Illinois Council of Community College Administrators (ICCCA). The goals of the training were to educate students about industry regulations and reduce farm accidents. Rich Teeter, Assistant Professor of Agriculture, coordinated the program with Kevin Runkle, Regulatory Affairs Manager with IFCA, which will now be offered to other community colleges and further unite education and industry.
OSHA Uses Crystal Ball to Cite West Fertilizer
While ATF investigators say that ammonium nitrate was detonated in the explosion at the West Fertilizer plant, they don't know how the blast was initiated. They say the origin of the fire that preceded the explosion was in the fertilizer and seed building, but the cause of the fire has not been determined. ATF officials still consider the site a crime scene, preventing the Chemical Safety Board from conducting a thorough investigation into the cause - so we will probably never know with any certainty actually what happened. OSHA, on the other hand, seemed to have used their crystal ball to conjure up 24 violations totaling $118,000 notably during the recent shutdown of the government. OSHA's actions are reprehensible, especially considering many of the violations are based on 29 CFR 1910.109, the explosives standard which has not been proven to be applicable to an agricultural facility like West to begin with. Other violations are equally questionable as they deal with issues destroyed in the explosion. The details of the citation were released even though the government was shut down - all this while our government didn't have what little it took to honor our war heroes, but could come up with the resources to beat up a dead company.
Happy 20th Anniversary, CCA Program!
The Certified Crop Adviser (CCA) program celebrates its 20th anniversary this year and continues to strive for excellence in agriculture by challenging agronomists to maintain their expertise.
Bill Signed Requiring Sleep Apnea Test For Drivers
On October 15, 2013, President Obama signed a bill (H.R. 3095) requiring DOT to use a formal rule making process if they wish to require sleep apnea testing for commercial truck drivers. Many doctors have been using their discretion to require commercial truck drivers to submit to a sleep apnea test prior to issuance of a medical card. This was based on information provided by DOT, which was construed as guidance by many doctors. In order for a sleep apnea test to be a regulatory requirement prior to issuance of a medical card, DOT now has to address the issue through the formal rulemaking process by writing a rule requiring a sleep apnea test, which will be open for public comment. Sleep apnea testing for commercial truck drivers will most likely be based on medical criteria and a person's propensity to be diagnosed with sleep apnea. The rulemaking process is anticipated to take several months before sleep apnea testing is a requirement.
OSHA's Top 10 violations for 2013 Announced
Once again, fall protection tops the list of OSHA's most-cited workplace safety violations. OSHA's top 10 violations for 2013 were announced at the National Safety Council Congress & Expo. The preliminary figures for 2013 Top 10 are:
1.
1926.501
Fall Protection
8,241 total violations
2.
1910.1200
Hazard Communication
6,156 total violations
3.
1926.451
Scaffolding
5,423 total violations
4.
1901.134
Respiratory Protection
3,879 total violations
5.
1901.305
Electrical, Wiring Methods
3,452 total violations
6.
1910.178
Powered Industrial Trucks
3,340 total violations
7.
1926.1053
Ladders
3,311 total violations
8.
1910.147
Lockout/Tagout
3,254 total violations
9.
1910.303
Electrical, General Requirements
2,745 total violations
10.
1910.212
Machine Guarding
2,701 total violations
DOT Withdraws Proposal to Revise Entry-level Driver Training
DOT withdrew its December 26, 2007 notice of propopaddinsed rulemaking (NPRM) that proposed new entry-level driver training standards for individuals applying for a commercial driver's license (CDL) to operate commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) in interstate commerce. The Agency withdrew the 2007 proposal because commenters to the NPRM, and participants in the Agency's public listening sessions in 2013, raised substantive issues which have led the Agency to conclude that it would be inappropriate to move forward with a final rule based on the proposal. DOT is expected to initiate a new rulemaking.
CVSA Posts Roadcheck 2013 Numbers
Commercial vehicle inspectors across North America completed 73,023 truck and bus inspections during 72 hours of Roadcheck 2013, the annual enforcement and safety outreach campaign carried out by the members of the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA). Roadcheck 2013 took place June 4-6, with approximately 1,000 commercial vehicles inspected every hour during the 72-hour event.
Of those inspections, a total of 47,771 were North American Standard Level I inspections - the most comprehensive roadside inspection, in which vehicles and drivers are assessed for violations of federal, state or Canadian provincial safety regulations. Of Level I inspections, 24.1 percent were found with Out-of-Service (OOS) violations.
Cargo securement-related violations represented 11.7 percent of all OOS violations issued during the event, down slightly from 12.3 percent in 2012. Although this equates to only one out of every 50 vehicles inspected, loss of a load by a commercial truck is always a severe risk to safety. Inspectors always watch for signs of improperly secured loads such as inadequate number of tie downs, damaged webbing or chain and other load-securement violations.
Brakes routinely stand out in the mix of OOS violations issued during Roadcheck. This year, 49.6 percent of vehicle OOS violations were related to brake adjustment and other brake system violations.
DOT Publishes Rules on Railroad Crossings
DOT has amended the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSRs) and Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMRs) to prohibit a driver of a commercial motor vehicle or of a motor vehicle transporting certain hazardous materials or certain agents or toxins from entering onto a highway-rail grade crossing unless there is sufficient space to drive completely through the grade crossing without stopping. The intent of this rulemaking is to reduce highway-rail grade crossing crashes. This rule went into effect on October 25, 2013.
New PPE Standards for Agrium Terminals
Agrium's Wholesale division notified customers that it has adopted new Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) minimum requirements for anyone entering Agrium distribution terminals. The new PPE requirements are designed to improve safety.
For anhydrous ammonia transfers/rail and truck loading, the new minimum PPE standards require individuals to wear a long-sleeved shirt; long pants; chemical gloves; a chemical apron or suit; leather or rubber safety boots with a safety toe; a full-face respirator, to be worn while connecting or disconnecting a loading hose or arm; and a hard hat and sealed eyewear or goggles to be worn while the respirator is not in use.
For UAN solution and ammonium polyphosphate (10-34-0) truck loading, the minimum PPE requires a long sleeve shirt; long pants; chemical gloves; leather or rubber safety boots with a safety toe; and a hard hat and splash goggles.
For dry fertilizer transfers/rail and truck loading, the minimum PPE requires a long-sleeved shirt; long pants; chemical gloves; leather or rubber safety boots with a safety toe; a hard hat; and sealed eyewear or goggles.
Agrium told customers that it is "encouraging everyone to implement these changes immediately," though the new requirements will not take effect until January 1, 2014. After that date, Agrium said it "will not load carriers who are not in compliance" with the new PPE standards.
Unified Registration System Final Rule
On August 23, 2013, DOT published a final rule known as the Unified Registration System (URS). The rule amends its regulations requiring interstate motor carriers, freight forwarders, brokers, intermodal equipment providers, hazardous materials safety permit applicants and cargo tank facilities under DOT jurisdiction, to submit required registration and biennial update information to the Agency using a new electronic on-line Unified Registration System.
The implementation of the URS final rule consolidates the following registration and information systems:
  • The USDOT identification number system;
  • The commercial registration system to obtain for-hire operating authority/MC Number;
  • The financial responsibility information system; and
  • The service of process agent designation system.
URS is designed to streamline the registration process and serve as a clearinghouse and repository of information on, and identification of, all entities required to register with DOT. The provisions and their impact to your operations are outlined below.
Effective November 1, 2013:
  • The MCS-150 form is being replaced by the online registration MCSA-1 form.
  • All new USDOT applicants and entities required to submit a biennial update will be required to complete their update online using the MCSA-1 form. (Refer to biennial update schedule below).
  • DOT will issue a warning letter 30 days prior to your biennial update deadline.
  • Failure to file an update will result in inactivation of your USDOT Number and you will be prohibited from operating.
  • If you change your legal company name, form of business or address, you must notify DOT within 30 days.
  • Use the following schedule to determine when your biennial update is due:
USDOT Number Ending In:
Must file by last day of:
1
January
2
February
3
March
4
April
5
May
6
June
7
July
8
August
9
September
0
October
  • If the next to last digit of your USDOT number is odd, you must file your update in every odd-numbered calendar year.
  • If the next to last digit of your USDOT number is even, you must file your update in every even-numbered calendar year.
Effective October 23, 2015:
  • To continue legal operations, you will be required to have your insurance agent file proof of liability insurance with DOT.
  • New applicant DOT numbers will not become active until all filing requirements have been met.
  • New operating authority applicants will no longer be issued a separate MC, MX or FF number.
  • New USDOT number applicants will be required to pay $300.
Effective April 25, 2016:
  • To continue legal operations, you will be required to designate a process agent using Federal Form BOC-3. (A process agent is a representative upon whom court papers may be served).
Comment Period Open on Phase II Fumigant Label
EPA is in the process of the re-licensing decisions for the following soil fumigants (RED's):
  • Metam Sodium/Metam potassium
  • Methyl Bromide
  • Chloropicrin
  • Dazomet
The comment period is open until November 25, 2013. Click here to review additional information and provide comment.
MAP-21 Provisions Incorporated into FMCSRs
DOT adopted, as a final rule, certain regulations required by the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (MAP-21) surface transportation reauthorization legislation.
The majority of these statutory changes went into effect on October 1, 2012, while others went into effect on October 1, 2013. It was necessary to make conforming changes to ensure that FMCSA's regulations are current and consistent with the applicable statutes. Petitions for Reconsideration must be received by the Agency no later than December 2, 2013.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSRs) amended by this final rule encompass diverse subject areas. The amendments are explained below:
- Safety Fitness of New Operators. Previously new entrant motor carriers were required to undergo a safety review within 18 months of beginning operations. MAP-21 changed that time period to 12 months for property carriers and 120 days for passenger carriers. (Section 32102)
- Increased Penalties for Operating Without Registration. Previously the civil penalty for violating the Agency's reporting, recordkeeping and registration requirements was set at $500, except for violations of passenger carrier registration requirements, which were set at $2,000. MAP-21 increased the penalties to $1,000 for violating the reporting and recordkeeping requirements, $10,000 for non-passenger carrier registration violations and $25,000 for passenger carrier registration violations. It also changed the penalty for transporting hazardous wastes without the appropriate registration from a maximum of $20,000 to a minimum of $20,000 and maximum of $40,000. (Section 32108)
- Revocation of Registration and Other Penalties for Failure To Respond to Subpoena. Previously, 49 U.S.C. 525 provided for a fine of between $100 and $5,000 for motor carriers that failed to obey a subpoena or an Agency order to appear or testify issued under 49 U.S.C. Chapter 5. MAP-21 amended the penalties in that section by raising the fine to between $1,000 and $10,000. (Section 32110)
- Fleetwide Out of Service Order for Operating Without Required Registration. Previously, 49 U.S.C. 13902(e)(1) provided that if a motor vehicle was used to provide transportation without or beyond the scope of registration, that motor vehicle could be put out of service. MAP-21 changed Section 13902(e)(1) to authorize FMCSA to place a motor carrier out of service for operating vehicles without or beyond the scope of registration. (Section 32111)
- State Reporting of Foreign Commercial Driver Convictions. Section 32203(a) of MAP-21 amended 49 U.S.C. 31301 by adding a definition of "foreign commercial driver." This final rule amends 49 CFR 383.5 to add this definition. MAP-21 amended 49 U.S.C. 31311(a) by adding a requirement that states report foreign commercial drivers' convictions related to the operation of both commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) and non-CMVs to FMCSA's Federal Convictions and Withdrawal Database. Section 32203(b) also added the requirement that states report unlicensed or non-CDL foreign drivers' convictions related to the operation of a CMV to the Federal Convictions and Withdrawal Database. (Section 32203)
- Authority To Disqualify Foreign Commercial Drivers. Previously enacted 49 U.S.C. 31310 sets forth the criteria for disqualifying CMV operators. MAP-21 amended that section by stating explicitly that the disqualification criteria also apply to foreign commercial drivers. (Section 32204)
- Revocation of Foreign Motor Carrier Operating Authority for Failure To Pay Civil Penalties. MAP-21 amended 49 U.S.C. 13905(d)(2) to state explicitly that the Agency's authority to suspend, amend, and revoke motor carrier operating authority registration applies to foreign motor carriers. This final rule amends 49 CFR 386.84 to reflect this change. The final rule also makes a technical correction to Sec. 386.84. That section contains a reference to 49 CFR part 386 Appendix A (h) that was not updated after that paragraph was re-numbered. (Section 32205)
- Employer Responsibilities. Previously, 49 U.S.C. 31304 prohibited employers from allowing employees to operate CMVs when the employer knew that the employee had lost the right to operate a CMV or was disqualified, or when the employee's driver's license was suspended, revoked or canceled. MAP-21 amended that section to prohibit employers from allowing employees to drive when the employer knows or should reasonably know that those circumstances exist. (Section 32307)
- Inspection Demand and Display of Credentials. MAP-21 amended 49 U.S.C. 504(c) to include employees of states that receive Motor Carrier Safety Assistance Program (MCSAP) grants as among those authorized to conduct inspections of certain equipment and records upon display of proper credentials. In addition, Section 32501 amended 49 U.S.C. 504(c) by specifying that the credentials of authorized individuals may be presented either in person or in writing. (Section 32501)
- Penalties for Violation of Operation Out of Service Orders. MAP-21 amended 5 U.S.C. 521 to add a $25,000 penalty for motor carriers operating CMVs in violation of an out-of-service order issued following a determination that the carrier is unfit or an imminent hazard. (Section 32503)
- Increased Penalties for Evasion of Regulations. Previously, 49 U.S.C. 524 provided the following penalties for knowing and willful violations of 49 U.S.C. Chapter 5: $200-$500 for a first violation and $250-$2,000 for a subsequent violation. Section 32505 of MAP-21 amended this provision by removing the knowing and willful requirement; expanding the scope of applicable violations to include 49 U.S.C. Chapter 51, Subchapter III of Chapter 311 (except Sec. 31138 and 31139), Sec. 31302, 31303, 31304, 31305(b), 31310(g)(1)(A), and 31502, and any regulation issued under those provisions; and increasing the penalty for a first violation to $2,000-$5,000 and subsequent violations to $2,500-$7,000. This final rule adds new paragraph (i) to 49 CFR part 386, Appendix B, to implement these amendments. (Section 32505)
- Violations Relating to CMV Safety Regulation and Operators. Previously, 49 U.S.C. 521(b)(2)(D) directed the Agency to take into account the following factors when assessing a civil penalty: The nature, circumstances, extent and gravity of the violation committed and, with respect to the violator, the degree of culpability, history of prior offenses, ability to pay, effect on ability to continue to do business and such other matters as justice and public safety may require. MAP-21 amended 49 U.S.C. 521(b)(2)(D) by removing "ability to pay" from this list. (Section 32506)
- Emergency Disqualification for Imminent Hazard. Previously, 49 U.S.C. 31310(f) provided for the emergency disqualification of an individual from operating a CMV, if continued operation would constitute an imminent hazard, as defined at 49 U.S.C. 5102. MAP-21 amended Sec. 31310(f) by changing the meaning of "imminent hazard" to include the definition at 49 U.S.C. 521. (Section 32507)
- Motor Carrier Safety Assistance Program. MAP-21 amended 49 U.S.C. 31102(b) by identifying local government agencies as MCSAP partners and establishing four program goals. This final rule amends 49 CFR 350.103 to incorporate these new elements. Section 32601(a)(4) amended the requirements, codified at 49 U.S.C. 31102(b), for state participation in the MCSAP grant program. This final rule amends 49 CFR 350.201 (n) and (s) and adds new Sec. 350.201(z) and Sec. 350.211(22) to reflect these changes. Section 32601(a)(5) amended requirements, codified at 49 U.S.C. 31102(b), for the states' maintenance of effort and average level of expenditure under the MCSAP grant plans. (Section 32601)
- Waivers, Exemptions and Pilot Programs. Section 32913(b) amended the requirements, codified at 49 U.S.C. 31315(b), for a person to request an exemption from certain Agency requirements. The amendment requires the person's licensing state to inform roadside enforcement personnel of the exemption, after having received notice from FMCSA. New 49 CFR 350.201(z), discussed above, also implements this change. Previously, 49 U.S.C. 31315(c)(1) required FMCSA to publish notice of all pilot programs in the Federal Register. Section 32913(c) retained the requirement that the Agency publish notices of pilot programs, but removed the requirement that they be published in the Federal Register. (Section 32913)
- Financial Security of Brokers and Freight Forwarders. Previously, 49 U.S.C. 13906 required brokers to maintain a bond to ensure that the transportation contracted for was actually provided, but left the amount of the bond to the Agency's discretion. MAP-21 amended that section to set a minimum of $75,000 and extended the bond requirement to freight forwarders as well. (Section 32918)
- Civil Penalties. Previously, 49 U.S.C. 5123 provided for penalties of between $250 and $50,000 for violations of regulations related to the transportation of hazardous materials. For violations that resulted in "death, serious illness or severe injury to any person or substantial destruction of property," it provided for penalties of up to $100,000. MAP-21 amended Sec. 5123 to provide for penalties of up to $75,000 for violations of regulations related to the transportation of hazardous materials and $175,000 in the event of death, serious illness, severe injury or substantial destruction of property. (Section 33010)
2013 Asmark Institute, Inc. This information is believed to be reliable by the Asmark Institute, however, because of constantly changing government regulations, interpretations and applicability or the possibility of human, mechanical or computer error, the Asmark Institute does not guarantee the information as suitable for any particular purpose.