Drivers getting new voice at FMCSA

A group of 20-25 truck drivers will be providing direct feedback to federal regulators on safety issues ranging from hours of service (HOS) to truck parking.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) announced Friday that the new commercial driver panel subcommittee has been set up to inform the agency’s Motor Carrier Safety Advisory Committee (MCSAC) with the goal of gaining a range of viewpoints and experiences among different sectors of the driver community, including drivers of straight trucks, agriculture haulers, and hazardous materials drivers.

“The Department of Transportation and this administration believe in listening to our drivers and hearing their concerns directly,” commented FMCSA Deputy Administrator Wiley Deck.

“We know that many of the solutions to the challenges we face don’t come from Washington — they come from the hardworking men and women who are behind the wheel all over our nation. This new subcommittee to MCSAC will further help us hear from America’s commercial drivers,” Deck said. 

FMCSA held up this year’s final rule on revised HOS regulations as an example of how it is formulating regulations based directly off feedback from commercial drivers seeking more flexibility in how they operate on the road.

“During the Trump administration, FMCSA has focused on hearing directly from commercial drivers and incorporating their opinions and concerns into the agency’s safety initiatives,” FMCSA stated. “The agency continues to hold listening sessions and discussions with the motor carrier industry to gather feedback and shape FMCSA’s priorities.”

Among the issues covered during MCSAC’s last meeting, held in mid-July, were plans to look more in depth at crashes in the last-mile delivery sector and driver pay.

An FMCSA official said a listing of the new members was not yet publicly available, and the first meeting with the new driver panel was not yet scheduled. 

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