The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has created a free visor card for truck drivers on how to choose and use the right Global Positioning System (GPS) navigation device. “By using a navigation system that does not provide important route restrictions, such as low bridge overpasses, the shortcut you thought would save you time and fuel may end up costing you more than you bargained for,” noted FMCSA.
OSHA has posted online new Annotated Permissible Exposure Limit (PEL) tables, which will enable employers to voluntarily adopt newer, more protective workplace exposure limits. OSHA’s PELs set mandatory limits on the amount or concentration of a substance in the air to protect workers against the health effects of certain hazardous chemicals, and OSHA will continue to enforce those mandatory PELs.
SC&RA will be closed November 28-29 for the Thanksgiving holiday. AAA projects 43.4 million Americans will journey 50 miles or more from home during the Thanksgiving holiday weekend, a 1.5 percent drop from the 44 million who traveled last year. AAA defines the holiday period as Nov. 27 to Dec. 1.
Ninety percent of the travel is expected to be by automobile. If you will be among those traveling, buckle up and drive safely. SC&RA also reminds members that many state permit offices will be closed over the holiday and travel restrictions will be in place.
On November 25, SC&RA began accepting registrations from previous Symposium exhibitors wishing to purchase a booth for the 2014 Specialized Transportation Symposium, March 19-21, at the Omni Houston Hotel, Houston, Texas. If you are a past exhibitor and have not received information, please contact Surian Choi (email@example.com).
Although motor carriers and other entities that are required to have a U.S. DOT number are also required to file an updated Form MCS-150 with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) at least every two years, the agency has never strictly enforced that requirement. That situation is about to change, according to an article in the Nov. 8 issue of the State Laws Newsletter.
Nearly 3 million nonfatal workplace injuries and illnesses were reported by private industry employers in 2012, resulting in an incidence rate of 3.4 cases per 100 equivalent full-time workers, according to estimates from the Survey of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses recently released by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The rate reported for 2012 continues the pattern of statistically significant declines that, with the exception of 2011, occurred annually for the last decade. Key findings include:
Up to 39 gigawatts of offshore wind capacity in United Kingdom waters are planned for development by 2030, said UK Energy Secretary Ed Davey earlier this month. “There should no doubt about the government’s commitment to renewable energy as part of a cost effective, low-carbon, secure and diverse energy mix. No doubt about the level of support available.”
The trucking industry has launched a fundraising effort for an industrywide movement centered on a positive image and a more robust connection with policymakers and the general public. This initial phase, introduced online, includes creative materials, messaging and social media links for the industry as well as the public.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has made available $2 million in funding for rebates to help construction equipment owners replace or retrofit older diesel construction engines. “Exhaust from diesel construction equipment affects children, senior citizens and others in neighborhoods across the country,” said Janet McCabe, Acting Assistant Administrator for EPA’s Office of Air and Radiation. “These rebates will help equipment owners protect public health and improve air quality near construction sites while updating their fleets.”
Construction employment increased in 39 states over the past 12 months, the most widespread gains since April 2012, according to an analysis released Nov. 22 by the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) of Labor Department data. “It is encouraging that three-quarters of the states are now adding construction jobs on a year-over-year basis,” said AGC Chief Economist Ken Simonson. “Employment increases are still intermittent in too many states, however, and nearly all states are far below their pre-recession highs.”