FMCSA Suspends Hours of Service in Five States to Speed Hurricane Sally Relief
Washington D.C. – The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has issued a Regional Emergency Declaration for motor carriers providing direct relief in five U.S. Gulf Coast states in response to Hurricane Sally.
On Tuesday, the FMCSA issued the Declaration suspending hours of service (HOS) rules and certain Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSRs) for motor carriers providing direct assistance to relief efforts in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana and Mississippi.
“This Emergency Declaration provides for regulatory relief for commercial motor vehicle operations while providing direct assistance supporting emergency relief efforts transporting supplies, goods, equipment and fuel into the Affected States, and transporting persons into and from the Affected States, or providing other assistance in the form of emergency services during the emergency in the Affected States from Tropical Storm/Hurricane Sally,” the Declaration states.
Hurricane Sally made landfall early Wednesday morning as a category 2 and is causing historic flooding along parts of the U.S. Gulf Coast.
Maximum sustained winds of 105 mph were recorded by the National Hurricane Center (NHC) and left a wide path of destruction from southeastern Alabama to the western portion of the Florida Panhandle.
Multiple big rigs have been left in Hurricane Sally’s wake and many roadways have been closed so far.
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The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is urging extreme caution as continued flooding is expected as the storm moves inland.
Storm surge from Hurricane #Sally will be dangerous and may wash out roads and buildings:
🔹 Follow directions from local officials.
🔹 If told to evacuate, leave quickly.
🔹 In you are located farther from the coastline, monitor heavy rains for signs of inland flooding. pic.twitter.com/TTSvuJSLzl
— FEMA (@fema) September 15, 2020
The FMCSA noted, “Direct assistance terminates when a driver or commercial motor vehicle is used in interstate commerce to transport cargo or provide services not in support of emergency relief efforts related to Tropical Storm/Hurricane Sally, or when the motor carrier dispatches a driver or commercial motor vehicle to another location to begin operations in commerce.”
The Declaration will remain in effect for the duration of the emergency or until 11:59 p.m. ET, October 14, 2020, whichever is less.