The U.S. Transportation Department’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) on Monday said it’s leading an Interstate Petroleum Transport Team to ensure the quickest and most efficient movement of fuel to the region devastated by Hurricane Sandy.
The agency explained the team will serve as a “single point of contact for states, the trucking industry, and other agencies to assist in the removal of barriers to the quick delivery of fuel. Since many of the necessary legal authorities reside at the state level, such as restrictions on truck size and weight and the authority to travel across state lines, the team will help coordinate state level activities within the region.”
The team has already opened a hotline telephone number (800-832-5660) to help address any individual registration, certification, tax, or other barriers to the flow of fuel transportation to affected states.
“This team will help get fuel delivered to states and communities recovering from Hurricane Sandy even faster and more efficiently than before, by streamlining multiple state regulations for trucks,” said Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, in a statement. “The president has asked us to ensure fuel moves as quickly as possible, and we are answering that call, starting with a hotline number that will give trucks, states and others a one-stop solution to ensure the swift delivery of relief goods.”
Trucks bringing fuel to the impacted region must follow different state regulations. The FMSCA team will coordinate information on a variety of waivers to ensure each state is on the same page on key regulatory issues that should be addressed to assist the flow of petroleum products to affected states, including:
- Driver hours-of-service.
- Oversize and overweight.
- Low-sulfur diesel waivers.
- Toll waivers.
- Vehicle registration waiver (International Registration Plan - IRP).
- Fuel tax waiver (International Fuel Tax Authority -- IFTA).
FMCSA has already issued an Eastern Regional Emergency Declaration to temporarily lift hours-of-service requirements and other regulations to assist interstate truck drivers and operators providing direct emergency relief, including transporting generators and fuel. Working with the Federal Emergency Management Agency and Defense Logistics Agency, FMCSA has also helped connect fuel distributors with companies that have fuel pump trucks.