Nebraska waives hours rules for diesel haulers

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Nebraska has temporarily lifted hours-of-service restrictions for diesel haulers after experiencing a diesel shortage. Gov. Dave Heineman issued the executive order July 21 that will continue through Aug. 20 for diesel haulers driving within Nebraska.

Peak agricultural demand has coincided with a severe drought, resulting in heavy crop watering, and with decreased refinery production during the conversion to ultra-low-sulfur diesel, Heineman said. The result is a temporary shortage of diesel, the governor said.

“High fuel prices are already causing farmers and ranchers serious stress at the fuel pump, but we cannot afford to allow supply disruptions during this key time for irrigators,” Heineman said. “This waiver is an important step to help truckers and distributors get diesel to the locations where it is needed most.”

Regional diesel terminals in North Platte, Columbus, Norfolk, Doniphan and Lincoln have reported low supplies of diesel. Short supplies in some areas have forced tanker drivers to travel greater distances. Most of the state’s diesel terminals expect to restock in the next several days, Heineman said.