Federal Regulators Postpone Key Trucking Industry Rulemakings

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Federal regulators are postponing several rulemakings that impact the trucking industry, including a contentious rule aimed at limiting the engine speeds of new trucks.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) proposed rule on truck speed limiters, initially set for publication last month, has been deferred to May 2025. This delay was outlined in the U.S. Department of Transportation’s recent agenda, released by the White House Office of Management and Budget.

The proposed regulation mandates that trucks weighing over 26,000 pounds be equipped with an electronic speed governor, which would set the vehicle’s maximum speed, although this speed has not yet been determined. Originally, this rule was supposed to be issued by mid-2023.

Since then, the proposal, which has elicited nearly 16,000 comments, has been delayed three times.

Additionally, the FMCSA is postponing proposed changes to Electronic Logging Device (ELD) operations by eight months, including considerations on whether they should apply to engines manufactured before 2000.

This notice of proposed rulemaking, originally slated for October 2024, has been shifted to June 2025.

A joint FMCSA-National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) final rule that would establish performance standards and maintenance requirements for automatic emergency braking systems on heavy trucks has also been delayed until January 2025, nine months past its original April 2024 deadline.

The NHTSA-FMCSA proposal, issued in June last year, was mandated by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law enacted in 2021. Additionally, collision avoidance technology is listed on the National Transportation Safety Board’s “Most Wanted” list of safety regulations.

Other postponed rulemaking dockets include regulations on automated driving systems in heavy trucks (from March 2024 to December 2024), measures to improve safety for female truck drivers (from June 2024 to December 2024), and new physical qualification standards for truck drivers with epilepsy (from July 2024 to June 2025).

The agenda also indicates that revisions to the Drug & Alcohol Clearinghouse procedures, aimed at better accounting for controlled substance violations, are expected to be finalized this month after being delayed from November 2023.

FMCSA officials were not immediately available to comment on the reasons behind these delays.

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