WASHINGTON, D.C. — The federal agency that regulates commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) may delay certain provisions in its Entry Level Driver Training rule, and has moved to ban drivers convicted of human trafficking from operating a commercial vehicle.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Association (FMCSA) announced on Thursday that it is proposing an extension on the compliance date of two provisions in its final rule, “Minimum Training Requirements for Entry-Level Commercial Motor Vehicle Operators.”

The date for training providers to upload entry-level driver training (ELDT) certification information into the Training Provider Registry (TPR) and for state driver licensing agencies to receive driver-specific ELDT information would be extended from Feb. 7, 2020, to Feb. 7, 2022, according to the FMCSA’s Federal Register.

The extension would provide FMCSA with more time to complete development of the electronic interface that will receive and store ELDT certification information from training providers and transmit that information to the state licensing agencies. The proposed extension would also provide the agencies with enough time to modify their information technology systems and procedures as needed to receive driver-specific ELDT data from the TPR.

For information on submitting comments on the proposal, go here.

The Pupil Transportation Safety Institute (PTSI) noted in a news release that the delay does not negate the new ELDT training requirements. As of Feb. 7, 2020, new drivers will still be required to comply with the final ELDT rule’s training requirements.

“PTSI will still be ready to deliver the online course in compliance with the February 2020 mandate,” said Kathleen Furneaux, PTSI’s executive director. “Our wide range of expertise in school bus driver training and development places us in the unique position to offer high quality FMCSA compliant driver training with solid results for the school transportation industry.”

PTSI is developing online theory curriculum for school bus transportation professionals to meet the requirements of the “theory” portion of the new ELDT requirement, and will also offer ELDT trainer’s guides which design and guide the delivery of the Behind the Wheel (BTW) portions of the requirement for both BTW Range and BTW Road portions.

Meanwhile, the FMCSA also announced on Thursday a final rule that permanently bans drivers convicted of human trafficking from operating a commercial motor vehicle for which a commercial driver’s license or a commercial learner’s permit is required.

Following President Trump’s signature of the “No Human Trafficking on Our Roads Act,” the FMCSA issued the rule to prohibit an individual from operating a CMV for life if that individual uses a CMV to commit a felony involving a severe form of human trafficking, according to a news release from the FMCSA. The rule revises the list of offenses permanently disqualifying individuals from operating a CMV for which a commercial driver’s license (CDL) or a commercial learner’s permit is required.

“The commercial motor vehicle industry is uniquely positioned to help detect and report human trafficking, and thankfully professional drivers’ efforts often bring an end to these tragic situations. Sadly, however, some human trafficking activities are facilitated by the use of commercial trucks or buses,” said FMCSA Administrator Raymond P. Martinez. “By enforcing a lifetime ban on any CMV driver convicted of severe human trafficking, we aim to deliver a strong and effective deterrent to this abhorrent behavior. If a commercial driver is convicted of using their commercial motor vehicle related to human trafficking — that person will never be driving interstate commercial vehicles again.”

To report human trafficking activity, contact the National Human Trafficking Hotline by dialing toll-free (888) 373-7888 or by sending a text to 233733.

About the author
Nicole Schlosser

Nicole Schlosser

Former Executive Editor

Nicole was an editor and writer for School Bus Fleet. She previously worked as an editor and writer for Metro Magazine, School Bus Fleet's sister publication.

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