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Transportation Policy

What Transportation Professionals Need to Know About the U.S.-Mexico Border Situation

On March 27, U.S. Customs and Border Protection issued a notice detailing the re-assignment of over 750 officers from various ports of entry along the U.S.-Mexico border to help process people crossing the border. This past weekend, rhetoric increased significantly regarding the potential of closing the border completely. While this threat is not new, it certainly feels different this time around, and specifically raises questions for those involved in regular cross border freight movements. With the news that Secretary Nielsen is cutting short a trip to Europe, what can supply chain professionals anticipate regarding cross-border operations?

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Trade Acronyms as a Second Language

Everyone is talking about trade and tariffs—and the potential impacts on businesses and countries. But do you feel lost in a sea of jargon as you listen to the talk? People don’t mean to be rude. But as they explain what’s at stake and recommend courses of action, they may take for granted that you can speak what is essentially a foreign language as well as they can. » Read More

Up for Discussion: A First Glance at Congress’s Next Infrastructure Bill

On Monday July 23, 2018, retiring House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman, Rep. Bill Shuster, released a discussion draft of an infrastructure bill, otherwise known as a highway bill. While there is little chance of this bill passing this year or next, it is meant to set the boundaries of the debate as Congress looks to a 2020 expiration date of the FAST Act (the last infrastructure bill).

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FMCSA Releases Guidance: Personal Conveyance by Commercial Truck Drivers

On May 31, 2018, FMCSA issued updated guidance on use of personal conveyance by commercial truck drivers. Previously, guidance had restricted the use of personal conveyance to “unladen” vehicles, which many interpreted as bobtail or power only moves. This final guidance makes clear that drivers can use personal conveyance for laden vehicles in certain circumstances.

One of the biggest impacts this guidance will have is to finally provide clear guidance on what to do when a driver runs out of hours on private shipper property due to unexpectedly long loading or unloading delays. Previously there was no clear answer to this as we outlined in this blog from December 2014.

Specific information about the guidance

C.H. Robinson submitted comments specifically asking FMCSA to address this question and they responded as follows:

The following are examples of appropriate uses of a CMV while off-duty for personal conveyance that include, but are not limited to:

Time spent traveling to a nearby, reasonable, safe location to obtain required rest after loading or unloading. The time driving under personal conveyance must allow the driver adequate time to obtain the required rest in accordance with minimum off-duty periods under 49 CFR 395.3(a)(1) (property-carrying vehicles) or 395.5(a) (passenger-carrying vehicles) before returning to on-duty driving, and the resting location must be the first such location reasonably available.

New guidance adds flexibility

All ELDs have the ability to currently log personal conveyance time. This new guidance by FMCSA will allow drivers significantly more flexibility in the use of safe and appropriate personal conveyance than they were previously able to use.

The ELD Mandate and Fresh Produce Logistics: What Shippers Need to Know

Last December, the electronic logging device (ELD) mandate went into effect for the broader carrier community, marking a change in how professional truck drivers and commercial motor carriers log hours of service (HOS). The federal ELD mandate, which states that fleets previously using paper logbooks needed to equip their trucks with ELDs, went into full enforcement—which includes issuing non-compliant drivers with out-of-service citations—on April 1, 2018, with the exception of a limited 90-day waiver for the transportation of agricultural commodities that remains in effect until June 18. » Read More

Global Logistics and Trade Programs: An Update on GSP and C-TPAT

global-logistics-image

Updates and adjustments to global trade programs have been capturing headlines and creating uncertainty for several months. Even with NAFTA negotiations moving into 2018, there are still other possible global trade updates on the horizon that shippers should keep an eye on. Here’s a brief check-in on two important global trade programs that are on the cusp of potential change.
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Supporting Carriers with a Discounted ELD Program

Supporting Carriers with a Discounted ELD Program | Transportfolio

Carriers across the country are in the process of choosing the right electronic logging device (ELD) for their business in preparation of the upcoming ELD mandate. Meanwhile, many shippers aren’t sure what actions they should take—if any.
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New Report Recommends CSA Program Overhaul: What Now?

New Report Recommends CSA Program Overhaul: What Now? | Transportfolio

Hot off the presses, the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) released the widely anticipated report on the Compliance Safety and Accountability program. This report was required by Congress as part of the FAST Act signed by President Obama in December 2015.
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