Pipeline disruption prompts hours of service waiver in Nevada

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Trucking news and briefs for Tuesday, Feb. 14, 2023:

Gas pipeline disruption prompts hours of service waiver

A leak in a California gasoline pipeline last week that supplies gasoline and diesel to facilities in southern Nevada prompted Nevada Gov. Joe Lombardo to declare a state of emergency, waiving hours of service requirements for truck drivers hauling gasoline, diesel, jet fuel, and other refined petroleum products.

The Kinder Morgan pipeline, according to Lombardo, supplies approximately 90% of the needed gas, diesel, jet fuel and other refined petroleum products to the Las Vegas Valley and surrounding areas. It was shut down last week due to a leak, but the company announced over the weekend that it had resumed operations.

Lombardo’s declaration waives the maximum driving time regulations in Part 395.3 of the hours of service regulations for fuel haulers in the state. Unless renewed, the declaration is effective through Feb. 25.

Legislation introduced aimed at combating catalytic converter theft

Bills introduced in both chambers of Congress earlier this month would, if passed, ensure that law enforcement can more effectively address these thefts by marking each converter with a traceable identification number and establishing converter thefts as a criminal offense.

In the Senate, the legislation was introduced by Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minnesota), and in the House, the bill was introduced by Rep. Jim Baird (R-Indiana).

The Preventing Auto Recycling Thefts (PART) Act would require new vehicles to have a VIN number stamped onto the converter to allow law enforcement to link stolen parts to the vehicle from which they originated. It would also:

Create a grant program through which entities can stamp VIN numbers onto catalytic converters of existing vehicles

Improve record keeping standards for purchasers of used catalytic converters

Establish enforceability of laws around catalytic converter theft by codifying these crimes as a criminal offense

The bill has received support from the American Trucking Associations, the American Truck Dealers group and more.

Michigan frost law weight restrictions take effect

Michigan spring 2023 weight restrictionsMichigan's annual spring weight restrictions went into effect for the highlighted part of the state on Monday.MDOTThe Michigan Department of Transportation and local agencies are enacting spring weight restrictions, an annual move the department said is necessary to protect roads.

Effective as of 6 a.m. Monday, Feb. 13, weight restrictions are imposed and enforced on all state trunkline highways from the Michigan/Indiana and Michigan/Ohio state lines north to and including M-55 from the intersection with U.S. 31 in Manistee, then east on M-55 to the intersection with M-66 in Missaukee County, then north on M-66 to the intersection with M-55 in Missaukee County, then east on M-55 to the intersection with U.S. 23 in Tawas City.

According to a statement from MDOT, when roads that have been frozen all winter begin to thaw from the surface downward, melting snow and ice saturate the softened ground. During the spring thaw, the roadbed softened by trapped moisture beneath the pavement makes it more susceptible to damage. This contributes to pothole problems already occurring due to this winter's numerous freeze-thaw cycles.

In the restricted areas, the following will apply:

  • On routes designated as "all-season" (designated in green and gold on the MDOT Truck Operators Map), there are no reductions in legal axle weights
  • On routes designated as "seasonal" (designated in solid or dashed red on the MDOT Truck Operators Map), there is a posted weight reduction of 25% for rigid (concrete) pavements and 35% for flexible (asphalt) pavements
  • All extended permits will be valid for oversize loads in the weight-restricted area on the restricted routes. Single-trip permits will not be issued for any overweight loads or loads exceeding 14 feet in width, 11 axles and 150 feet in overall length on the restricted routes.

MDOT said it determines when weight restrictions begin each spring by measuring frost depths along state highways, observing road conditions, and monitoring weather forecasts. Weight restrictions remain in effect until the frost line is deep enough to allow moisture to escape and the roadbeds regain stability.

County road commissions and city public works departments put in place their own seasonal weight restrictions, which usually, but not always, coincide with state highway weight restrictions. Signs are generally posted to indicate which routes have weight restrictions in effect.

Beemac names new CEO

Beemac Inc.’s board of directors announced Monday it has appointed Michael Presto as the company’s Chief Executive Officer.

Presto was Senior Vice President of Operations and an integral part of the growth and success of Beemac (CCJ Top 250, No. 158), the company said.

Presto succeeds Loren Dworakowski, who announced his decision to resign as CEO to fulfill the position of Chairman of the Board for Beemac. Presto’s appointment comes after an extensive selection process by the board.

“Mike was the perfect fit to carry on the company’s strong culture and to keep its growth path on track,” said Dworakowski. His vast experience in the trucking industry helped Presto understand all aspects of the business, including knowledge of a wide range of products such as Flat, Van, Heavy Haul, Specialized, Rail, Barge, Warehousing, 3 PL and even LTL.

Presto said he’s excited to take on the role of CEO at Beemac.

“Our rapid growth is a direct result of our people,” he said. “Our drivers, mechanics and office staff all strive for excellence daily. As an ESOP company, the ownership mentality and culture will be the driving force of our continued success. At Beemac we set big goals, then set out to achieve them.”