State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations
WHEREAS, Rhode Island and the New England region have experienced extreme snowfall during the months of January and February, with more snow and frigid temperatures forecast for the coming week; and
WHEREAS, State and municipal stockpiles of de-icing materials, primarily salt, are critically low, and immediate deliveries of salt to these stockpile locations are needed to maintain safe and operable highways; and
WHEREAS, several shipments of salt are scheduled to be delivered to Rhode Island in the coming weeks; and
WHEREAS, the frigid temperatures necessitate increased use of home heating oil and propane gas; and
WHEREAS, federal law ordinarily imposes certain limitations on the number of consecutive hours that commercial drivers can operate but also permits exemptions from these limitations in the event of an emergency proclamation issued by a governor; and
WHEREAS, exemptions from hours of service regulations would assist in maximizing the amount of heating oil and propane gas that can be delivered within the State.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Gina M. Raimondo, by the authority vested in me as Governor of the State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, do hereby proclaim as follows:
1. An emergency exists pertaining to the shortage of road salt within the State.
2. An emergency exists pertaining to the delivery of home heating oil and propane gas
3. These emergency exemptions are issued in connection with emergency conditions due to snow events which have the impacted the State's salt supply and the need for home heating oil and propane gas. A declaration of emergency is required to ensure the immediate delivery of salt within the State for the purpose of salting roads and highways to protect public safety and also to ensure the delivery of home heating oil and propane.
4. Pursuant to 49 C.F.R. § 390.23, the federal motor carrier safety regulations provided in 49 C.F.R. § 395.3 and incorporated by reference in R.I. Gen. Laws§ 31-27-5 are temporarily suspended for those drivers of motor vehicles engaged in the delivery of salt to state and municipal stockpile locations, as well as for drivers delivering residential home heating oil and propane gas. However, nothing contained in this Proclamation shall be construed as an exemption from the controlled substances and alcohol use and testing requirements under 49 C.F.R. § 382, the commercial driver's license requirements under 49 C.F.R. § 383, the financial responsibility requirements under 49 C.F.R. § 387, operating authority under 49 C.F.R. § 365, applicable size and weight requirements, or any other portion of the code of federal regulations not specifically identified, and this proclamation shall not apply to motor carriers that have an Out of Service order in effect. Drivers and carriers are expected to use good judgment and not operate vehicles with fatigued or ill drivers, or under any condition presenting a clear hazard to other motorists.
5. Drivers for motor carriers operating under this Proclamation must maintain a copy of it in their possession.
6. Upon termination of this Proclamation, federal regulations and state law shall again become effective.
This Proclamation shall take effect immediately and shall remain in effect until February 25, 2015.
Gina M. Raimondo