Wisconsin pipeline shutdown triggers HOS exemption for petroleum loads

By Land Line staff | Monday, May 09, 2016

The unexpected, temporary shutdown of a section of pipeline between Milwaukee and Green Bay has threatened gasoline and diesel supplies in Wisconsin, triggering an emergency declaration waiving hours-of-service limits on petroleum carriers making deliveries in the state.

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker signed the emergency declaration on Friday, May 6, that waives the weekly hours of service limits on the transportation of petroleum products within the state of Wisconsin. The emergency declaration does not waive the daily requirement of 10 hours of off-duty time.

The waiver is good as long as drivers are providing assistance for the emergency or for 30 days, whichever is shorter.

The emergency declaration follows the unexpected shutdown of a section of pipeline in between Milwaukee and Green Bay after an “anomaly” was detected on the refined products in the West Shore Pipeline. According to the May 6 declaration, the shutdown may trigger widespread terminal outages and shortages of petroleum products in the Green Bay area.

Extended wait times at Milwaukee and Madison petroleum terminals will also make it difficult for petroleum carriers to meet the demand, the declaration states, thereby necessitating the need for the hours-of-service exemption.

While the emergency declaration does not expressly state that drivers must be in possession of the emergency declaration, it is advisable. The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association’s Business Services Department recommends keeping a copy of the declaration in the cab with the load’s paperwork in the event of a roadside inspection.

Click here to read the full emergency declaration.

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