CVSA agrees to rescind current fatigue out-of-service standard

By Sandi Soendker, Land Line editor-in-chief | 9/28/2012

One week following a court hearing that considered whether or not the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance and the Minnesota State Patrol should be held in contempt of court for CVSA’s adoption of a legal standard that differed from last year’s court order – CVSA filed a new letter with the court in which it describes that its executive committee has decided to immediately repeal that legal standard.

According to a letter written by CVSA Executive Director Stephen Keppler on Sept. 27, CVSA’s executive committee has unanimously voted to remove language from the fatigue out-of-service criteria that ignores probable cause, effective immediately.

The CVSA out-of-service criteria, in place since April 1, stated that a driver can be put out of service if the inspector has “reasonable articulable suspicion” – less evidence than the “probable cause,” a standard required by U.S. District Judge Donovan W. Frank’s ruling of Sept. 21, 2011, in the case of OOIDA and Stephen K. House v. Minnesota State Patrol.  

In June, OOIDA filed a motion in the U.S. District Court for the state of Minnesota asking the court to compel the Minnesota State Patrol and CVSA to show why the two groups aren’t in contempt of court by ignoring the court’s order and adopting out-of-service criteria based on the lower legal threshold of suspicion and not probable cause.

The hearing was held Sept. 21 before Judge Frank. 

In the Sept. 27 letter filed with the court, Keppler wrote that the change voted on by CVSA will return the fatigue criterion to read as it did at the time Judge Frank issued his decision. The letter does not describe CVSA’s process to implement these changes.

Managing Editor Jami Jones contributed to this article.


Minnesota State Patrol urges CVSA to scrap fatigue out-of-service criteria