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  • FMCSA Posts Restart Suspension Notice

    December 18, 2014

    The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration posted official notice that the more restrictive version of the 34-hour restart has been suspended.
    The notice confirms the suspension ordered by Congress and says, “Drivers are therefore authorized, as of 12:01 a.m. on December 16, 2014, to resume use of the previous, unlimited restart provision.”
    The controversial provision that was suspended said that when drivers used the restart they had to take two periods off between 1 a.m. and 5 a.m., and could use the restart only once a week. The provision now in effect does not have these restrictions.
    The notice also says that the suspension will continue until September 30 or until FMCSA finishes the study that Congress required.
    And it adds that the agency will give notice when the temporary suspension ends and the more restrictive restart goes back into effect.

    Todd E. Smith, President          

    Thomas Wilson Group, LLC  

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  • DOE Lowers Diesel-Price Forecast to $3.07

    12/9/2014 12:50:00 PM Write a Letter to the Editor Write a letter to the Editor

    Diesel will average $3.07 a gallon next year, the Department of Energy said Dec. 9, lowering its most recent forecast by 31 cents.
    Trucking’s main fuel, which has averaged $3.86 per gallon this year and is now about $3.53, will slide under $3 next spring, DOE said in its monthly short-term energy outlook.
    The price will bottom out at $2.97 in April and May before climbing slowly to $3.17 by the end of 2015, the report said.
    The declines will be led by lower crude oil prices, the department said, cutting its forecast by $15 to an average $62.75 per barrel next year.
    DOE’s Energy Information Administration, which releases the outlook, said it “expects global oil inventories to continue to build over the next year, keeping downward pressure on oil prices.”
    Gasoline will drop even more precipitously, to an average $2.60 next year from its current national average $2.68, EIA said.
    Gas has averaged $3.45 this year and its pump price averaged below $3 in November for the first time in almost four years.

    Todd E. Smith
    Thomas Wilson Group, LLC
    615.277.0751 phone

  • HOS Suspension Included In $1 Trillion Omnibus Bill


    $500 Million Also Proposed for DOT Grants; Read Bill Summary

    Office of Sen. Mikulski
    A provision that would suspend parts of an hours of service rule has been included in a $1 trillion bill congressional lawmakers plan to advance to President Obama’s desk this month to keep federal agencies funded through fiscal 2015. 
    The provision, offered by Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine), would suspend for a year a requirement that drivers take off two consecutive periods of  1 a.m. to 5 a.m. during a 34-hour restart. It also would require the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration to provide Congress with an extensive study detailing the rule’s safety benefits.
    The bill language says that within 90 days of the enactment of the act, "the Secretary shall initiate a naturalistic study of the operational, safety, health and fatigue impacts of the restart provisions." It would suspend the current restart provisions through  Sept. 30, 2015, "and the restart rule in effect on June 30, 2013, shall immediately be in effect."
    American Trucking Associations’ leadership had urged its membership to press federal representatives to back the HOS suspension language in the omnibus.
    "We're pleased that the Collins language is included in the fiscal 2015 omnibus spending bill.  We now urge the House and Senate to pass the overall bill and that the president sign it into law," said Sean McNally, ATA vice president of public affairs.
    The bill also would provide $500 million for U.S. Department of Transportation infrastructure grants that have become popular with states and municipalities.

    Todd E. Smith
    Thomas Wilson Group, LLC
    615.277.0751 phone

  • Truck Tonnage

    Truck tonnage in October rose to the second-highest level on record and climbed 4.5% from a year ago, American Trucking Associations reported Nov. 18. 

    Todd E. Smith
    Thomas Wilson Group, LLC
    615.277.0751 phone
    615.277.0754 fax