The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) last Friday issued an emergency declaration for commercial vehicles effectively waiving the Hours of Service (HOS) regulations for several emergency relief efforts.

The food sector is included in that the waiver but only as “food for emergency restocking of stores,” which only takes into account the movement of food to distribution centers and from distribution centers to the grocery store.  It does not take into account the farm to fork continuum.

On Wednesday, FMCSA expanded their HOS waiver to include “immediate precursor raw materials—such as paper, plastic or alcohol—that are required and to be used for the manufacture of essential items.”  FMCSA indicated that livestock and poultry are considered immediate precursors.  However, hauling of feed, offal, rendered product, antimicrobials used in processing, sanitation supplies, and others still must comply with HOS regulations.  NCC has asked the transportation of these items and others to be included should FMCSA expand their HOS waiver again.