PMTA News

  • November 17, 2020 11:15 AM | Brandon Moree (Administrator)

    Greenbelt, Maryland (Nov. 17, 2020) – Commercial drivers have been working hard this year at great personal risk throughout the biggest widespread health crisis we’ve experienced in more than100 years. The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) is looking to recognize an exceptional professional commercial motor vehicle driver through the International Driver Excellence Award (IDEA). This annual award recognizes individuals who go above and beyond the performance of their duties as a commercial motor vehicle driver. 

    “While we always appreciate commercial drivers’ hard work and commitment to safety, this year, we’re especially excited to accept nominations for IDEA,” said CVSA President Sgt. John Samis with the Delaware State Police. “This year, it is particularly important to acknowledge the professional drivers who continued to work during such challenging times and IDEA is the perfect way for a motor carrier to say ‘thank you’ and ‘I appreciate you’ to their drivers.”

    IDEA is open to the entire commercial motor vehicle industry. This includes motorcoach and large truck drivers. Individuals do not have to be a member of or affiliated with CVSA to submit a nomination.

    Nominees must have:

    • At least 25 cumulative years of crash-free driving in a commercial motor vehicle with a clean driving record for the past three years
    • No felony convictions
    • No safety-related driving suspensions in the past three years
    • No driver violations in the past three years, excluding form and manner violations

    The IDEA winner will receive $2,500 and a trophy. Assuming the 2021 CVSA Workshop continues in-person, airfare to Louisville, Kentucky, and hotel accommodations at the Louisville Marriott Downtown will be provided for the winner and one guest. The IDEA winner will be presented with their award during the general session of the CVSA Workshop on April 19, 2021.

    The deadline for receipt of nominations is Friday, Dec. 11.

    Click here for more information and to obtain the IDEA nomination form.

    Announcement of the IDEA winner will be shared nationally through a press release, as well as on the CVSA website and through social media. A feature article on the award winner will run in CVSA’s quarterly magazine, “Guardian.”

    Check out past years’ IDEA winners.

    PrePass Safety Alliance, sponsor of 2021 IDEA, aims to make highways safer and more efficient through innovative data-driven solutions. Its services help increase safety, reduce delays and costs, and enhance the economic and environmental benefits that the freight sector contributes to the nation.


  • November 10, 2020 2:20 PM | Brandon Moree (Administrator)

    The FMCSA Pre-Employment Screening Program (PSP) Website has been updated with the October 30, 2020 snapshot from the Motor Carrier Management Information System (MCMIS).  The term "snapshot" refers to data captured from the MCMIS database as it appears on a particular date.

    Request an Updated Report

    You may now check your latest PSP record at: https://www.psp.fmcsa.dot.gov.


  • November 04, 2020 2:29 PM | Brandon Moree (Administrator)

    To improve the efficiency of the commercial driver’s license (CDL) Medical Examiner’s Certificate (MEC) processes and provide a more conducive customer service experience, PennDOT recently implemented changes that will provide CDL drivers with an additional 45 days from the expiration date of the current MEC on file to submit a new MEC prior to downgrading the CDL.

    These changes became effective on November 1, 2020 and apply to CDL drivers whose MECs expired on or after March 1, 2020 but before June 1, 2020. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) waiver period for these CDL drivers ended October 31, 2020. The FMCSA waiver period for CDL drivers whose MECs expired on June 1, 2020 or after goes out until December 31, 2020. Starting January 1, 2021, the changes will apply to all CDL drivers with a MEC requirement.

    Whereas the prior processes changed the CDL driver’s medical certification status to not-certified, completed the downgrade, and generated a non-CDL upon the expiration date of the MEC, the new processes will change the medical certification status to not-certified and just initiate (not complete) the downgrade upon the expiration date of the MEC. Upon the expiration date of the MEC, the CDL designation will not be removed. CDL drivers will be mailed a new 45-day notice informing them that their medical certification status has been changed to not-certified and that their CDL designation will be removed (downgrade) if a new MEC is not submitted and processed within 45 days of the mail date of the notice.

    The 90- and 30-day MEC reminder letters that CDL drivers receive will continue to go out. The new 45-day notice will be sent upon the expiration date (following day) of the MEC on file.

    The options available to submit a new MEC to PennDOT are as follows:

    · Fax a copy to 717-783-5429 or email a copy to [email protected]. Please allow at least 10 processing days for MECs submitted by fax or email.

    · Mail a copy to: PennDOT, Bureau of Driver Licensing, P.O. Box 69008, Harrisburg, PA 17106-9008. Please allow at least 15 processing days for MECs submitted through mail.

    · Hand-deliver a copy to your local Driver License Center.


  • November 03, 2020 9:21 AM | Brandon Moree (Administrator)

    Jacob “Jack” Floyd Conrad, 82 years, of Port Deposit, MD, passed away Thursday, October 29, 2020 in Havre de Grace, MD. Born March 2, 1938 in Rothsville Pennsylvania he was the son of the late Robert and Alice Floyd Conrad.

    Jack is survived by his loving wife, Diane L. Conrad of Port Deposit, MD; son, John J. Conrad and wife, Gretchen; two grandchildren, John “Jace” J. Conrad, Jr. and Jackson “Jack” A. Conrad.

    In addition to his parents, Jack was preceded in death by his brother, Richard H. Conrad.

    Jack lived his first 50 + years in Rothsville where he worked for Daffin Mfg. Co. in Lancaster along with serving for the National Guard Reserves in the early 60’s. In 1969 he started Eastern Mobile Mills in Lititz PA after Daffin sold out to a company from the mid-west. Jack was quick to recognize the need to diversify into bulk feed trucks as times were changing in the agricultural sector. He teamed up with Walinga, Inc. in 1974 and became their first dealer / service center in the US. As Jack focused on superior customer service with quality equipment he changed the company name to EMM Sales & Service, Inc. in the early 80’s. Positioning the company for the next generation he purchased a much larger facility in Brownstown PA which is where the company remains today. Jack served on several industry related boards throughout the years including President at Penn Ag Industries Associations. He always had a love for the water and boats so he ventured south to be on the water in MD in 1998.

    Jack came to Port Deposit seeking the enjoyment of the Susquehanna River. Not long after his arrival, he and his partner, Bob Dommel, completed the development of the Tome’s Landing Condominiums. Together with David Read, he went on to establish Tome’s Landing Marina.

    Jack was a community minded true friend of the Town of Port Deposit and the Water Witch Fire Company. His first donation was to the Conowingo Fire Station in 1998. His concern for the Water Witch Fire Company brought about his organization of a Poker Run and Crab Feast which over several years raised over $100,000.00. Thinking of the community, Jack donated the Tome Gashouse and the parking lot for the Port Deposit Town Hall. Most recently, he donated a boat slip at Tome’s Landing Yacht Club to the Water Witch Fire Company for their fire rescue boat.

    Jack spent the majority of his free time on the Chesapeake Bay and the Atlantic Ocean fishing and boating with friends and family.

    In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Water Witch Fire Company of Port Deposit and the Rothsville Volunteer Fire Company of Rothsville, PA, in care of the Lee A. Patterson & Son Funeral Home, P.A., P.O. Box 766, Perryville, MD 21903-0766.

    A visitation has been scheduled for Monday, November 9, 2020, 4 PM until 8 PM, at the Pleasant View Baptist Church, 150 Downin Lane, Port Deposit, MD. Interment will be private.

    Arrangements By Lee A. Patterson & Son Funeral Home, P.A., Perryville, MD

    www.pattersonfuneralhomemd.com

    Pleasant View Baptist Church

    150 Downin Lane, Port Deposit, MD 21904


  • November 02, 2020 2:18 PM | Brandon Moree (Administrator)

    Arlington, Virginia – Last week, the American Transportation Research Institute, the trucking industry’s not-for-profit research organization, released its 16th Top Industry Issues report, which identifies a number of the industry’s key concerns including the driver shortage, truck parking, driver compensation and retention and for the first time since 2005, insurance costs.

    “For a number of reasons, 2020 has been a tremendously challenging one for our industry and our country, but as ATRI’s survey lays out, there are a number of issues we must address in addition to the ones put in front of us by this pandemic,” said ATA Chairman Randy Guillot, president and CEO of Southeastern Motor Freight and Triple G Express Inc. “From finding and keeping qualified drivers to the increased costs of insurance and burdens imposed on our industry by unwarranted lawsuits, ATRI has identified the issues our industry cares most about and outlines plans for how we can solve them.”

    For the fourth year in a row, the driver shortage was the top industry issue overall, as well as topping the motor carrier list of concerns, highlighting the challenges fleets face in recruiting new talent and keeping their current drivers. In fact, driver retention was carriers’ number two issue, and sixth on the combined list.

    Among the 1,000+ truck drivers who responded to the survey, truck parking, driver compensation and detention issues were their top concerns.

    In all, ATRI received responses from 3,122 truck drivers, motor carriers, and other industry stakeholders – an all-time record for the 16-year-old survey.

    “Having such a robust sample gives us a very accurate picture of what issues are of most concern to the trucking industry,” said ATRI President and COO Rebecca Brewster. “With this information, the industry can best target its resources to address trucking’s concerns.”

    This year, for the first time since 2005, insurance cost and availability appeared in the top concerns – hitting fifth in the combined top 10 and fourth in the carrier concern list. In addition, tort reform appeared in the survey’s top 10 for the first time since 2011 – hitting seventh in the combined list and fifth in the carrier list.

    “The impacts of litigation and growth of nuclear verdicts in the trucking industry was really apparent in this year’s list of concerns,” Brewster said. “Earlier this year, ATRI quantified the growth in nuclear verdicts in the trucking industry, but even without that critical research, the fact that tort reform and insurance issues have resurfaced in the survey are a clear sign the industry is being impacted by rising costs related to litigation and insurance.”

    The complete results of the annual survey were released as part of 2020 American Trucking Associations’ Management Conference and Exhibition. The full report can be found at ATRI’s website – here.


  • October 30, 2020 1:09 PM | Brandon Moree (Administrator)
    Senate Bill 995 (Laughlin-R) amends Title 75 (Vehicles) to increase the width of multipurpose agricultural vehicles.

    1. Specifically, it amends the definition of "multipurpose agricultural vehicle" to increase the width by four inches (from 62 to 66) to reflect the type of equipment that is now being manufactured.
    2. Pertinent definitions: Multipurpose Agricultural Vehicle: A motor vehicle which is used exclusively for agricultural operations and only incidentally operated or moved upon the highways.
    3. Effective date: 60 days.
    4. Status:  Passed Senate, 50-0, 6/9/2020 – Passed House, 202-0, 10/19/2020 – Signed into law as Act 103 of 2020, 10/29/2020 


  • October 30, 2020 12:36 PM | Brandon Moree (Administrator)
    Senate Bill 1281 (Mastriano-R) also known as the “Move Over Law,” would require a driver approaching or passing a disabled vehicle to move over to one lane, or if that is not possible, to pass the vehicle at a rate of not more than 20 miles per hour less than the posted speed limit.

     

    1.       In addition, the disabled vehicle must display at least two visual markings to passing traffic, such as hazard lights, caution signs or road flares. 

    2.       It would also establish a new point system for a “Move Over” violation, double the fines for a summary offense, increase public awareness, and implement new requirements for drivers approaching an emergency response area.

     

    3.       Status:  Passed Senate, 49-0, 9/22/2020 – Passed House, as amended, 201-0, 10/21/2020 – Senate concurred in House amendments, 47-0, 10/21/2020 -- Approved by the Governor, Oct. 29, 2020, as Act 105 of 2020.


  • October 29, 2020 9:37 AM | Brandon Moree (Administrator)

    AGENCY: Transportation Security Administration, DHS.

    ACTION: Notice, extension of temporary exemption.

    SUMMARY: TSA is extending the exemption from Renewal of the Hazardous Materials Endorsement Security Threat Assessment for Certain Individuals that TSA published on July 31, 2020 which was scheduled to expire on October 30, 2020, through December 31, 2020. Under this exemption, states may extend the expiration date of hazardous materials endorsements (HMEs) that expire on or after March 1, 2020, for 180 days, due to restrictions and business closures in place in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. If a state grants an extension, the individual with an expired HME must initiate the process of renewing his or her security threat assessment (STA) for the HME no later than 60 days before the end of the state-granted extension. Federal partners, state licensing agencies and related associations report ongoing difficulties in timely renewal of expiring HMEs and asked TSA to consider extending the exemption until the end of calendar year 2020. TSA has determined it is in the public interest to extend the exemption through December 31, 2020, which aligns with similar waivers issued by the U.S. Department of Transportation. TSA may extend this exemption at a future date depending on the status of the COVID-19 crisis.

    DATES:

    This extension of the previously issued exemption published on July 31, 2020 (85 FR 46152) becomes effective on October 30, 2020, and remains in effect through December 31, 2020, unless otherwise modified by TSA through a notice published in the Federal Register.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Stephanie Hamilton, 571-227-2851 or [email protected].

    Click here to see the Federal Register for complete details.

  • October 28, 2020 9:24 AM | Brandon Moree (Administrator)

    Join Us For A New PMTA Webinar

    All About DOT Off-site Audits

    Thursday, November 12, 2020, from 9:00 AM – 10:15 AM EST

         Through September 2020, the number of DOT off-site (remote) audits increased by more than 400% over all of 2019, and those numbers will continue to climb.

    PMTA has partnered with Scopelitis Transportation Consulting on this new webinar that will explain in detail how FMCSA and its State enforcement partners conduct off-site DOT compliance audits. The webinar content was developed by STC from FMCSA’s safety auditor/investigator training manual and includes:

    ·     What CSA BASICs trigger the most off-site audits

    ·     How the off-site audit process really works

    ·     Details on the number of records audited during off-site audits

    ·     How drivers and their records are selected,

    ·     What other business records are requested during these audits, and

    ·     Much more...

    This webinar will be delivered by well-known industry regulatory and enforcement expert Dave Osiecki, President of Scopelitis Transportation Consulting, LLC. 

    Register today, and mark your calendar!


  • October 27, 2020 1:57 PM | Brandon Moree (Administrator)

    Greenbelt, Maryland (Oct. 27, 2020) – During this year’s Brake Safety Week, 12% of the 43,565 commercial motor vehicles inspected were placed out of service for brake-related violations. Inspectors from Canada, Mexico and the U.S. removed 5,156 commercial motor vehicles from roadways due to brake violations during the week-long inspection and enforcement event, focused specifically on reducing brake-related crashes by conducting inspections and identifying and removing unsafe commercial motor vehicles from roadways.

    Fifty-three jurisdictions participated in this year’s Brake Safety Week, which is a voluntary inspection, enforcement and outreach initiative. In light of the coronavirus pandemic, jurisdictions that elected to participate in Brake Safety Week, which took place Aug. 23-29, 2020, conducted inspections following each agency’s health and safety protocols and precautions in consideration of the health and well-being of inspectors and drivers.

    Forty-five U.S. jurisdictions, seven Canadian jurisdictions and Mexico’s National Guard and the Ministry of Communications and Transportation provided data this year. In the U.S., 35,778 inspections were conducted; 4,565 vehicles (13%) were placed out of service for brake-related violations. In Mexico, 6% (355) of the 5,958 commercial motor vehicles inspected were placed out of service for brake-related violations. In Canada, 1,829 inspections were conducted, and the brake-related out-of-service rate was 14% (256).

    Commercial motor vehicle inspectors throughout North America use the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance’s (CVSA) North American Standard Out-of-Service Criteria to identify critical vehicle inspection item violations that are concerning enough to warrant removing that vehicle from traveling on roadways until those conditions have been repaired.

    Eighty-eight percent of the commercial motor vehicles inspected did not have brake-related critical vehicle inspection item violations. Vehicles that did not have any out-of-service conditions during a Level I or Level V Inspection may have received a CVSA decal. A decal, valid for up to three months, signifies that the vehicle was recently inspected by a CVSA-certified inspector and that vehicle had no critical vehicle inspection item violations.

    In addition to capturing brake system out-of-service violation data, during this year’s Brake Safety Week, inspectors also recorded and submitted data regarding the chafing of brake hoses. Inspectors reported levels of brake hose chafing violations, separated into five categories based on the level of severity; two of which were out-of-service conditions, three were not.

    A total of 6,697 hose chafing violations were reported in a separate data query from participating jurisdictions. Table 1 provides a reference key and details each category of chafing, along with the numeric totals for each category by country. Table 2 illustrates the frequency of each category of brake hose/tube chafing encountered by each country as a percentage of all hose chafing violations.


    "Although many commercial motor vehicle enforcement agencies were forced to reduce services in the spring due to the pandemic, it was important that we resumed inspection and enforcement duties as soon as it was safe to do so," said CVSA President Sgt. John Samis with the Delaware State Police. "With truck drivers designated ‘essential personnel’ by the government, we needed to ensure that the vehicles traversing our roadways were safe to support commercial drivers as they selflessly continued to work during such a difficult and challenging time."

    Next year’s Brake Safety Week is scheduled for Aug. 22-28, 2021.

    Brake Safety Week is part of CVSA’s Operation Airbrake program, in partnership with the U.S. Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, the Canadian Council of Motor Transport Administrators, and Mexico’s National Guard and the Ministry of Communications and Transportation.


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