Department of Transportation (DOT)


With support from SC&RA’s Crane & Rigging Group Governing Committee, Crane & Rigging Group Safety & Education Committee, Transportation Group Governing Committee and Permit Policy Committee, the Association works to educate the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) on the viewpoints of its carrier members and how the decisions that these groups make can adversely affect the safe, productive and overall profitability of moves across the U.S.


SC&RA is currently working with FHWA and FMCSA on multiple issues, including: Interchange & Intersection Design, Truck Parking Availability, Hours of Service (for both Transportation and Crane & Rigging), On Duty vs. Off Duty, Automated Permitting Harmonization, Establishing Emergency OS/OW routes and the Electronic Data Logging (ELD) Mandate. See details below.

Interchange & Intersection Design

As civil engineers work diligently to increase safety and efficiency at our nation's crossroads, the primary focus has been on the volume of cars – arguably at the expense of permitted specialized transport or OS/OW trucks. The increase in this alternative intersection design is occurring while load size and volume is also increasing, and, unlike cars, OS/OW trucks cannot use every road and bridge. SC&RA shares in federal, state and local efforts to increase safety at our intersections and interchanges, but believes this goal can be achieved in harmony with the needs of the specialized carriers operating within the same areas.

Truck Parking Availability

The National Coalition of Truck Parking was created by FHWA to address well-documented shortage of truck parking across the nation, especially for OS/OW loads. SC&RA was named to the coalition and advocates for solutions to unique parking shortage issues confronting its members due to lack of adequate space for oversize loads and restricted permit provisions, including hours of service. SC&RA was successful in advocating final recommendations that included specific language acknowledging unique challenges for the specialized transportation industry. See FHWA's final report.

Electronic Data Logging Mandate

As part of the FMCSA’s final electronic logging device mandate, carriers and drivers who were using paper logs or logging software had to transition to electronic logging devices (ELDs) no later than December 18, 2017. Carriers and drivers who use AOBRDs prior to the compliance date must also transition to ELDs no later than December 16, 2019. To assist SC&RA members with this transition, a “Top Ten Questions to Ask Your Prospective AOBRD/ELD Vendor” was developed in partnership with SC&RA member ISE Fleet Services. For more information about the ELD mandate please click here.

Hours of Service -

SC&RA and its members have achieved a five-year exemption (through 2020) from compliance with the 30-minute rest break requirement of the agency’s Hours of Service Rule for OS/OW loads. This working exemption includes many examples of situations that could extend the workday beyond normal hours and into the 14-hour limit condition of the HOS regulation. SC&RA members that conduct OS/OW moves now enjoy financial and time savings because of this exemption.

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Hours of Service -
Crane and Rigging

SC&RA requested a limited exemption for crane operators from FMCSA Hours-of-Service regulation for commercial drivers. SC&RA specifically requested exemption “on behalf of individuals who operate cranes with a rated lifting capacity of greater than 30 tons, who engage in specialized training and certification.” Because of the request, all qualifying motor carriers and drivers operating mobile cranes with a rated lifting capacity of greater than 30 tons are exempt from the 30-minute break provision. The Agency subsequently denied SC&RA’s further request for exemption from the 14-hour driving window of the HOS rules citing: “The absence of this limit would allow drivers to operate without any restriction on the length of their duty day. The risk that safety would deteriorate in the absence of this requirement is high.”

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On Duty vs. Off Duty

SC&RA requested clarification from FMCSA regarding the terms “personal conveyance” and “laden” as referenced in the agency’s regulations, in the form of a letter to the FMCSA. The letter noted that association’s members carry various tools of the trade in service trucks used at remote job sites – such as slings, shackles, dollies, jacks, levels and hand tools that remain in the vehicle at all times when they are not in use. However, these service vehicles carry neither freight nor cargo. FMCSA responded by saying that it considers the term “laden” to refer to cargo or freight, not to include “tools of the trade” that are customarily stored on the vehicle when not in use.

Based on the success of this request for clarification, SC&RA has also requested similar clarification concerning when employees may unhitch a trailer and drive the cab a reasonable distance to a motel, restaurant, home or other non-work related activity at the end of the work day. SC&RA member companies have access to a copy of the letter from FMCSA; the Association encourages members to print the letter and disseminate it to drivers to carry in the cabs of their trucks as protection in cases in which inspectors misinterpret the rule.

Automated Permitting Harmonization

Improving permit turnaround time has historically been the highest priority for OS/OW carriers. However, the amount of time waiting to receive returned permits continues to be poor in many states and provinces. SC&RA advocates all state and provincial permitting offices to employ automated permit routing and analysis systems to auto-issue most permits efficiently within a minimum threshold.

Establishing Emergency OS/OW Routes

SC&RA advocates for state and federal officials to streamline the process for permitting and moving OS/OW loads both safely and efficiently in emergency situations. In 2016, SC&RA was named to the Emergency Route Working Group (ERWG), which provides the U.S. Secretary of Transportation advice and recommendations for the implementation of best practices for expeditious state approval of special permits for vehicles involved in emergency response and recovery.

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