PMTA News

  • March 16, 2020 8:30 AM | Brandon Moree (Administrator)

    Due to nature of the ongoing coronavirus COVID-19 situation and in the best interest of the health and well-being of those involved, PMTA has decided to postpone the following events:

    South Central/York-Adams Legislative Breakfast (March 18)
    Truckers Against Trafficking Coalition Build - Monroeville (March 24)
    Board of Directors Meeting (March 25)
    Driver of the Year Awards Banquet (March 25)
    Truckers Against Trafficking Coalition Build - Lancaster (March 26)
    Lehigh Valley Chapter Spring Membership Meeting (March 26)
    Lehigh Valley TDC Tune-Up Drive (April 26)

    PMTA plans to reschedule most of these events at a later date. Those dates have not yet been determined.

    We will continue to monitor the situation and will announce new dates when they are available. Conversations are ongoing about other future events. 


  • March 14, 2020 1:08 PM | Tim Hoffman (Administrator)

    EMERGENCY DECLARATION 
    UNDER 49 CFR § 390.23

    No. 2020-002

    THE FIFTY UNITED STATES OF AMERICA AND THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA

    The President has declared an emergency under 42 U.S.C. 5121, et seq., and pursuant to 49 CFR 390.23(a)(l)(i), an emergency exists that warrants an exemption from Parts 390 through 399 of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSRs), except as otherwise restricted by this Emergency Declaration. Such emergency is in response to Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreaks and their effects on people and the immediate risk they present to public health, safety and welfare in the fifty States and the District of Columbia. This Declaration addresses National emergency conditions that create a need for immediate transportation of essential supplies, equipment and persons, and provides necessary relief from FMCSRs for motor carriers and drivers engaged in the transport of essential supplies, equipment and persons.

    By execution of this Emergency Declaration, motor carriers and drivers providing direct assistance in support of relief efforts related to the COVID-19 outbreaks are granted emergency relief from Parts 390 through 399 of Title 49 Code of Federal Regulations, except as restricted herein. Direct assistance means transportation and other relief services provided by a motor carrier or its driver(s) incident to the immediate restoration of essential services, such as medical care, or essential supplies such as food, related to COVID-19 outbreaks during the emergency.

    This Emergency Declaration provides regulatory relief for commercial motor vehicle operations that are providing direct assistance in support of emergency relief efforts related to the COVID-19 outbreaks, including transportation to meet immediate needs for: (1) medical supplies and equipment related to the testing, diagnosis and treatment of COVID-19; (2) supplies and equipment necessary for community safety, sanitation, and prevention of community transmission of COVID-19 such as masks, gloves, hand sanitizer, soap and disinfectants; (3) food for emergency restocking of stores; (4) equipment, supplies and persons necessary to establish and manage temporary housing, quarantine, and isolation facilities related to COVID-19; (5) persons designated by Federal, State or local authorities for medical, isolation, or quarantine purposes; and (6) persons necessary to provide other medical or emergency services, the supply of which may be affected by the COVID-19 response. Direct assistance does not include routine commercial deliveries, or transportation of mixed loads that include essential supplies, equipment and persons, along with supplies, equipment and persons that are not being transported in support of emergency relief efforts related to the COVID-19 outbreaks.

     


  • March 13, 2020 9:21 AM | Brandon Moree (Administrator)

    As the situation around the coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to evolve our host for our tune-up drive, Mack Customer Center, has decided to temporarily suspend all events and visitors on their facility.

    We therefore will not be able to hold the competition this year. We are supporting their proactive approach to safeguarding our friends and family from the possible exposure to this virus.

    We would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone for you continued support in this event and support of the Lehigh Chapter of the Pennsylvania Motor Truck Association.

    We will return all checks to all of those who have pre-registered and also return checks to our sponsors who have paid.

    Thank you very much and please feel free to contact us with any questions.

    GOOD LUCK TO ALL CONTESTANTS AT YOUR STATE TRUCK DRIVING CHAMPIONSHIPS!


  • March 04, 2020 10:17 AM | Brandon Moree (Administrator)

    Harrisburg, PA – Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding yesterday announced that twelve counties have been added to Pennsylvania's Spotted Lanternfly quarantine zone ahead of the 2020 spring hatch. With this addition, the quarantine for this invasive pest is now at 26 counties.

    "The Spotted Lanternfly is more than a pest in the literal sense," said Agriculture Secretary Redding. "It's wreaking havoc for home and business owners; kids who just want to play outside; Pennsylvania agriculture and the economy of the state we all call home. Whether you think it's your job or not, we need every Pennsylvanian to keep their eyes peeled for signs of this bad bug – to scrape every egg mass, squash every bug, and report every sighting. We need to unite over our hatred for this pest for our common love: Pennsylvania."

    The new dozen counties are not completely infested, but rather have a few municipalities with a known infestation which led to a quarantine being placed on the entire county out of an abundance of caution. Allegheny, Beaver, Blair, Columbia, Cumberland, Huntingdon, Juniata, Luzerne, Mifflin, Northumberland, Perry, and York have been added to the quarantine for 2020.

    "Most of these municipalities have already been aggressively treated," said Dr. Ruth Welliver, director of the Bureau of Plant Industry. "With continued aggressive treatment and monitoring, and an actively engaged community, we can strike Spotted Lanternfly from these counties."

    Quick, aggressive treatment to newly identified populations of Spotted Lanternfly in Pennsylvania was funded through the Rapid Response Disaster Readiness line of Governor Wolf's 2019 PA Farm Bill. The 2020 PA Farm Bill proposes another $3 million to combat Spotted Lanternfly, plus an extra $1 million that is uncommitted to readily act in the event of the next agricultural disaster.

    Businesses that operate in or travel through quarantined counties are required to obtain a Spotted Lanternfly permit; fines associated with noncompliance can be up to $300 for a criminal citation or up to $20,000 for a civil penalty. Homeowners with questions about treatment are encouraged to contact their local Penn State Extension office or learn about management, including approved sprays. Pennsylvanians who live inside the quarantine zone should also review and sign the Compliance Checklist for residents.

    For more information on Spotted Lanternfly, visit agriculture.pa.gov/spottedlanternfly. For more about Governor Tom Wolf's PA Farm Bill and its investments in a sustainable agriculture industry visit agriculture.pa.gov/pafarmbill.



  • February 19, 2020 1:30 PM | Brandon Moree (Administrator)

    Arlington, VA – The American Transportation Research Institute today released its annual list highlighting the most congested bottlenecks for trucks in America.

    The 2020 Top Truck Bottleneck List assesses the level of truck-involved congestion at 300 locations on the national highway system.  The analysis, based on truck GPS data from over 1 million heavy duty trucks uses several customized software applications and analysis methods, along with terabytes of data from trucking operations to produce a congestion impact ranking for each location.  ATRI’s truck GPS data is also used to support the U.S. DOT’s Freight Mobility Initiative.  The bottleneck locations detailed in this latest ATRI list represent the top 100 congested locations, although ATRI continuously monitors more than 300 freight-critical locations.

    The intersection of I-95 and SR 4 in Fort Lee, New Jersey is once again the Number One freight bottleneck in the country.  The rest of the Top 10 includes:

    1. Atlanta: I-285 at I-85 (North)
    2. Nashville: I-24/I-40 at I-440 (East)
    3. Houston: I-45 at I-69/US 59
    4. Atlanta, GA: I-75 at I-285 (North)
    5. Chicago, IL: I-290 at I-90/I-94
    6. Atlanta, GA: I-20 at I-285 (West)
    7. Cincinnati, OH: I-71 at I-75
    8. Los Angeles, CA: SR 60 at SR 57
    9. Los Angeles, CA: I-710 at I-105

    “ATRI’s bottleneck analysis is an important tool for TDOT as we work to maximize the safety and efficiency of our transportation system, and ensure we are making the smartest investments possible,” said Tennessee Department of Transportation Assistant Bureau Chief Freight & Logistics Dan Pallme.  “The additional capacity we are providing as part of the ongoing I-440 Reconstruction Project should improve the safety and reliability of this important corridor, which we know is critical to freight movement.”

    ATRI’s analysis, which utilized data from 2019, found that the number of locations experiencing significant congestion – with average daily speeds of 45 MPH or less – has increased 92 percent in just five years, far outpacing the 10 percent growth in traffic congestion for that same time period.

    “ATA has been beating the drum about the continued degradation of our infrastructure, and thanks to ATRI’s research we can see exactly how decades of ignoring the problem are impacting not just our industry but our economy and commuters everywhere,” said American Trucking Associations President and CEO Chris Spear. “This report should sound the alarm for policymakers that the cost of doing nothing is too high, and provide a roadmap of where to target investments to really solve our nation’s mounting infrastructure crisis.”

    There are six locations in Pennsylvania in the top 100. There were just two in 2018 and five in 2019. Four of the six bottlenecks are in the Philadelphia are (I-76 at I-676, I-76 at US 1, I-476 at I-95 and I-76 at 476), one is in the Harrisburg area (SR 581 at I-83) and one is in Pittsburgh (I-70 at I-79 East).

    For access to the full report, including detailed information on each of the 100 top congested locations, please visit ATRI’s website at TruckingResearch.org.

    ATRI is the trucking industry’s 501c3 not-for-profit research organization. It is engaged in critical research relating to freight transportation’s essential role in maintaining a safe, secure and efficient transportation system.


  • February 18, 2020 2:56 PM | Brandon Moree (Administrator)

    The Agricultural Improvement Act of 2018, Pub. L. 115-334, (Farm Bill) removed hemp from the definition of marijuana under the Controlled Substances Act.  Under the Farm Bill, hemp-derived products containing a concentration of up to 0.3% tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) are not controlled substances.  THC is the primary psychoactive component of marijuana.  Any product, including “Cannabidiol” (CBD) products, with a concentration of more than 0.3% THC remains classified as marijuana, a Schedule I drug under the Controlled Substances Act.

     

    We have had inquiries about whether the Department of Transportation-regulated safety-sensitive employees can use CBD products.  Safety-sensitive employees who are subject to drug testing specified under 49 CFR part 40 (Part 40) include:  pilots, school bus drivers, truck drivers, train engineers, transit vehicle operators, aircraft maintenance personnel, fire-armed transit security personnel, ship captains, and pipeline emergency response personnel, among others. 

     

    It is important for all employers and safety-sensitive employees to know:

     

    1.   The Department of Transportation requires testing for marijuana and not CBD.

     

    2.   The labeling of many CBD products may be misleading because the products could contain higher levels of THC than what the product label states. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not currently certify the levels of THC in CBD products, so there is no Federal oversight to ensure that the labels are accurate. The FDA has cautioned the public that: “Consumers should beware purchasing and using any [CBD] products.”  The FDA has stated: “It is currently illegal to market CBD by adding it to a food or labeling it as a dietary supplement.”*  Also, the FDA has issued several warning letters to companies because their products contained more CBD than indicated on the product label. **[i]

     

    3.   The Department of Transportation’s Drug and Alcohol Testing Regulation, Part 40, does not authorize the use of Schedule I drugs, including marijuana, for any reason. Furthermore, CBD use is not a legitimate medical explanation for a laboratory-confirmed marijuana positive result. Therefore, Medical Review Officers will verify a drug test confirmed at the appropriate cutoffs as positive, even if an employee claims they only used a CBD product. 

     

    It remains unacceptable for any safety-sensitive employee subject to the Department of Transportation’s drug testing regulations to use marijuana.  Since the use of CBD products could lead to a positive drug test result, Department of Transportation-regulated safety-sensitive employees should exercise caution when considering whether to use CBD products.

     

    The contents of this document do not have the force and effect of law and are not meant to bind the public in any way. This document is intended only to provide clarity to the public regarding existing requirements under the law or agency policies. This policy and compliance notice is not legally binding in its own right and will not be relied upon by the Department as a separate basis for affirmative enforcement action or other administrative penalty.  Conformity with this policy and compliance notice is voluntary only and nonconformity will not affect rights and obligations under existing statutes and regulations.  Safety-sensitive employees must continue to comply with the underlying regulatory requirements for drug testing, specified at 49 CFR part 40.

     

     

    February 18, 2020

    ___________________________

    [i]* What You Need to Know (And What We’re Working to Find Out) About Products Containing Cannabis or Cannabis-derived Compounds, Including CBD: The FDA is working to answer questions about the science, safety, and quality of products containing cannabis and cannabis-derived compounds, particularly CBD.”  https://www.fda.gov/consumers/consumer-updates/what-you-need-know-and-what-were-working-find-out-about-products-containing-cannabis-or-cannabis

    ** https://www.fda.gov/news-events/public-health-focus/warning-letters-and-test-results-cannabidiol-related-products


  • February 11, 2020 11:53 AM | Brandon Moree (Administrator)

    The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has announced that fees for the 2020 UCR registration year will be published in the Federal Register on Thursday, February 13. Upon publication, the fees will become effective and the 2020 registration period will officially open. FMCSA previously announced on its website the specific fee levels for 2020.

    Businesses subject to the UCR Act may register at  www.ucr.gov

    Since the opening of the 2020 registration period was delayed several months, UCR is requesting that states delay enforcement until June 1, 2020.


  • February 04, 2020 8:28 AM | Brandon Moree (Administrator)

    DEPARTMENT OF
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION

    Pennsylvania State Clean Diesel Grant Program; Availability of Grants

    [50 Pa.B. 739]
    [Saturday, February 1, 2020]

     The Department of Environmental Protection (Department) announces an opportunity to apply for $2,654,841 in grants offered through the Fiscal Year 2019 Pennsylvania State Clean Diesel Grant Program (Grant Program). Funding has been made available through the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Federal Diesel Emission Reduction Act (DERA). Most of this funding, approximately $2.15 million, is from the settlement of a lawsuit with Volkswagen and its subsidiaries, relating to diesel vehicle emission violations, and is being used as the Commonwealth's voluntary match funding under the DERA program. Funding is available for eligible diesel emission reduction projects that will improve air quality and protect public health and the environment by reducing emissions from diesel-powered vehicles and engines.

    The Department is seeking applications for projects that will replace or retrofit fleet diesel-powered highway and nonroad vehicles, engines and equipment. The majority of the vehicle or engine's annual operation time must occur within this Commonwealth. Public and private entities that operate diesel-powered fleets throughout this Commonwealth should apply. These entities may include school districts, municipal authorities, political subdivisions, State agencies, nonprofit entities, corporations, limited liability companies or partnerships incorporated or registered in this Commonwealth, air quality or transportation organizations and metropolitan or rural planning organizations. Projects must use technologies certified or verified by the EPA or the California Air Resources Board to lower diesel emissions, unless otherwise noted in the Grant Program guidelines. The technology may be a single technology or a combination of available technologies.

     The Department will not reimburse grant recipients for project costs incurred prior to the grant performance period set forth in the applicable grant agreement. The Grant Program guidelines and application instructions are available on the Department's Driving PA Forward webpage at www.depgis.state.pa.us/DrivingPAForward/ .

     A webinar on the Grant Program will be held on Monday, February 10, 2020, from 10:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. See the Department's previously listed Driving PA Forward webpage for registration information.

     Applications must be submitted online through the Department of Community and Economic Development's Electronic Single Application web site, eGrants at www.esa.dced.state.pa.us . The Department will accept applications through 4 p.m. on Friday, March 6, 2020. Fax and e-mail submissions of applications will not be accepted.

     Interested applicants with questions may contact the Bureau of Air Quality at ra-epvwmitigation@pa.gov or (717) 787-9495.

    PATRICK McDONNELL, 
    Secretary

    [Pa.B. Doc. No. 20-159. Filed for public inspection January 31, 2020, 9:00 a.m.]


  • January 31, 2020 10:52 AM | Brandon Moree (Administrator)

    The Gig is Up – New Jersey Misclassification Laws Create Extreme Risk for Anyone Utilizing Independent Contractors

    Date: Tuesday, February 4, 2020

    Time: 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm

    About the Program:
    Join FordHarrison Partner Salvador Simao as he discusses the recent New Jersey laws that revolve around independent contractor misclassifications and what that means to the trucking industry.

    Registration:
    To register for this complimentary webinar, click here.


  • January 30, 2020 11:14 AM | Brandon Moree (Administrator)

    ACTION: Interim final rule with request for comment.

    SUMMARY: FMCSA is amending its December 8, 2016, final rule, "Minimum Training Requirements for Entry-Level Commercial Motor Vehicle Operators" (ELDT final rule), by extending the compliance date for the rule from February 7, 2020, to February 7, 2022. This action will provide FMCSA additional time to complete development of the Training Provider Registry (TPR). The TPR will allow training providers to self-certify that they meet the training requirements and will provide the electronic interface that will receive and store entry-level driver training (ELDT) certification information from training providers and transmit that information to the State Driver Licensing Agencies (SDLAs). The extension also provides SDLAs with time to modify their information technology (IT) systems and procedures, as necessary, to accommodate their receipt of driver-specific ELDT data from the TPR. FMCSA is delaying the entire ELDT final rule, as opposed to a partial delay as proposed, due to delays in implementation of the TPR that were not foreseen when the proposed rule was published.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:  Mr. Richard Clemente, Driver and Carrier Operations Division, Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., Washington, DC 20590-0001, (202) 366-4325, MCPSD@dot.gov. If you have questions on viewing or submitting material to the docket, contact Docket Operations, (202) 366-9826.


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