The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) has granted drivers who haul livestock a 90-day waiver from a regulation that could have negative effects on animal well-being. Livestock groups say this is good news.
National Pork Producers Council (NPPC) requested on behalf of the U.S. pork industry and other livestock sectors a waiver from a requirement that certain drivers install Electronic Logging Devices (ELDs) on their trucks. And asked for an exemption from the regulation, citing the incompatibility between transporting livestock and DOT’s Hours of Service rules. Those regulations limit truckers to 11 hours of driving daily, after 10 consecutive hours off duty, and restrict their on-duty time to 14 consecutive hours, which includes nondriving time.
“The ELDs regulation poses some serious challenges for livestock haulers and the animals in their care,” said NPPC President Ken Maschhoff, a pork producer from Carlyle, Ill. “This waiver will give the department time to consider our request that truckers transporting hogs, cattle and other livestock be exempt from the ELDs mandate.”
More from NPPC here.
Craig Uden, president of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA), said “This is very good news for cattle and beef producers, and it’s a sign that the Administration is listening to the concerns that we have been raising. We’ve maintained for a long time that FMSCA is not prepared for this ELD rollout, that there needs to be more outreach from the Department of Transportation to the agricultural community, and that there’s currently still major confusion on the agricultural exemption on Hours of Service known as the 150 air-mile rule.
“This rule would certainly be helpful to our cattle haulers across the country. We want to thank Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao for listening to our concerns, and we’ll continue to work with her and FMCSA to make sure that our cattle are delivered safely, and that our drivers and others on the road are safe as well.”