Oregon logging operations get exemption from mandatory 30-minute break

By Jami Jones, Land Line managing editor | 3/17/2015

Another exemption from the mandatory 30-minute rest break has been granted by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. This time Oregon timber hauling operations get the free pass.

The Oregon Trucking Association petitioned FMCSA in December 2013 on behalf of commercial vehicle drivers who transport timber from Oregon forests.

The trucking association petitioned for the exemption stating that the lumber mills depend on regular volume. Environmental restrictions limit the amount of timber harvested, and when fire risk increases the Oregon Department of Forestry limits logging operations.

The association also offered a trade-off when asking for the exemption. Timber haulers wouldn’t work after the 12th hour after coming on duty if they get an exemption from taking the mandatory 30-minute rest break.

In a notice that will publish to the Federal Register on March 18, the agency granted the exemption.

The two-year exemption can be used only for loads originating in forestlands of Oregon and when the forestry department restricts operations because of increased fire risk. FMCSA took the trucking association up on their deal and drivers may not operate after the 12th hour of coming on duty.

This is the third such special long-term exemption to the 30-minute rest break granted by the FMCSA. The Department of Energy secured an exemption and the National Pork Producers was granted one for all livestock transportation as well. Those two-year exemptions were granted in 2013, shortly after the rest break was mandated, and they will expire in June and July of this year.

Copyright © OOIDA