Like many people, I am fond of small Government's efficiency, the result of good people writing and implementing good processes. Neither of these are usually the case in the US because we ceased having a small government decades ago. However the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has amazed me for the past two administrations for their ability to speak intelligently to all stakeholders and craft policy that moulds new safety procedures recognizing industry's needs for profits with the public's right to be safe on America's highways. To that end, here is an update to existing rules that is especially important for service utility body truck operators in Texas, Louisiana and Oklahoma:
Section 5524: Creates exemptions for welding trucks used for the pipeline industry weighing 15,000 pounds or less. Owners/operators of these vehicles are exempt from:
- Registering as a motor carrier, including obtaining/displaying a U.S. DOT number on the vehicle.
- Certain driver qualifications.
- Driving a Commercial Motor Vehicle (CMV)
- Parts and accessories inspection & maintenance for CMVs
- HOS restrictions on drivers, including maximum driving and on-duty time.
More common sense solutions without compromising stakeholder safety.