Hours of Service of Drivers of Commercial Motor Vehicles; Regulatory Guidance for Oilfield Exception
Notice of regulatory guidance; response to public comments.
FMCSA responds to the public comments to its June 5, 2012, notice of regulatory guidance concerning the hours-of-service requirements for oilfield operations, and the Agency announces its decision to retain the 2012 guidance. On June 5, 2012, FMCSA updated its April 4, 1997, regulatory guidance to explain the applicability of the ``Oilfield operations'' exceptions in 49 CFR 395.1(d) to the ``Hours of Service [HOS] of Drivers'' regulations, and requested comments on the additional language. FMCSA also held three ``listening sessions'' in Pennsylvania, Colorado, and Texas to accept public comments for the docket. Following a review of all comments, the Agency has determined that no further elaboration on the regulatory guidance is needed, at this time, and the Agency will continue to monitor the use of the two HOS oilfield exceptions in 49 CFR 395.1(d). The Agency also calls attention to 49 CFR part 381, which provides procedures for persons to apply for individual or class exemptions from certain regulations provided the exemption would achieve a level of safety that is equivalent to, or greater than, the level of safety that would be achieved absent the exemption. Therefore, motor carriers that believe the current oilfield operations exceptions do not provide sufficient relief for their operations should consider submitting an application for an exemption to the Agency describing an alternative that would ensure the requisite level of safety.