Archive for February, 2012

Lawsuits Begin in Response to FMCSA’s Changes to the Hours of Service Rules

Wednesday, February 29th, 2012

As we mentioned in a previous blog – Trucking Industry News: Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration Announces Several Changes to Hours of Service Rules – The Maryland Motor Truck Association (MMTA) recently announced several Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) changes to the hours of services rules. Most of these rules will not go into effect until July 1, 2013. A few, however, went into effect Monday, February 27th. These include:

•     Time resting in a commercial motor vehicle (CMV) will now be counted as off-duty time in lieu of the current on-duty time.  It is important to note that this off-duty time does NOT extend the 14 consecutive hour daily limit; however, it can be used to allow a driver to extend his weekly limits.  There is no limit on the amount of time that a driver can rest in a parked commercial vehicle.

•     A new “egregious” hours of service violation – defined as exceeding the maximum daily drive time of 11 hours by three or more hours – begins in February.  The penalty for this violation can be as much as $2,750 for a driver and $11,000 for the motor carrier.

As expected, the American Trucking Associations recently filed suit in an objection to the revised 34-hour restart. Additionally, Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety, Public Citizen, and the Truck Safety Coalition sued last week for judicial review of the 11 hour daily drive time limit.

There is no telling how these lawsuits will affect the implementation of these new restrictions.

If you have any questions about the FMCSA hours of service rules, please contact Middleton and Meads by calling 410-752-5588 or click here today!

With three locations to serve you throughout Baltimore, Washington and Virginia, Middleton and Meads will keep you “on the road.” So go ahead and do what you do best and let us take care of the rest. Our service professionals are experienced and knowledgeable. That is why companies of all sizes depend on us – day in, day out, mile after mile.

The Middleton & Meads Company has a long and respected history in the transportation industry. We are a family owned and operated company through four generations, celebrating over 90 years quality of truck, bus and equipment repair and service.

We work with you to provide the solutions to your transportation needs!

You can follow us on Facebook and Twitter as well!

Sources:

Maryland Motor Truck Association – MMTA E-News

Maryland Crime Rises with Gas Prices

Friday, February 24th, 2012

We saw similar crimes during the U.S. oil crisis of the 1970’, when people began to siphon gas from other cars. Today, with gas prices constantly rising, thieves in Maryland have devised a new way to get free gas. They’re drilling holes in fuel tanks! And, according to Takoma Park Police, this trend is expected to continue.

“We’re going to keep an eye on it, especially as we’re expecting gas to go over $4 per gallon,” said Andrew Gucciardo, a crime analyst with Takoma Park police. “We’re thinking this is going to be a trend.”

There have been well over a dozen separate reported incidents since November. In one such instance, a thief drilled holes in 14 separate trucks at a Toyota dealership in Annapolis, stealing just 3 gallons of gas per truck, but causing over $8,000 in damages.

“This crime could put motorists into harm’s way,” Townsend said in a statement. “A leaking gas tank can be extremely dangerous. What’s worse is the costly damages gas thefts leave. In the end, drivers aren’t only left with an empty tank but also with empty pockets after spending hundreds of dollars in repair costs.”

To view the full article, please go to http://washingtonexaminer.com/local/maryland/2012/01/md-thieves-drill-fuel-tanks-gas/208931.

If you have any questions about the Maryland Thieves Drilling Fuel Tanks for Gas, please contact Middleton and Meads by calling 410-752-5588 or click here today!

With three locations to serve you throughout Baltimore, Washington and Virginia, Middleton and Meads will keep you “on the road.” So go ahead and do what you do best and let us take care of the rest. Our service professionals are experienced and knowledgeable. That is why companies of all sizes depend on us – day in, day out, mile after mile.

The Middleton & Meads Company has a long and respected history in the transportation industry. We are a family owned and operated company through four generations, celebrating over 90 years quality of truck, bus and equipment repair and service.

We work with you to provide the solutions to your transportation needs!

You can follow us on Facebook and Twitter as well!

Sources:

Md. thieves drill fuel tanks for gas

Trucking Industry News: Sales Tax to be Added on Motor Fuels

Tuesday, February 14th, 2012

One of the hottest topics of the Maryland General Assembly has been the numerous taxes and other fees proposed by the Governor in his annual budget. These include:

  • – Reducing itemized mortgage deductions
  • – Lowering citizens’ income tax exemptions
  • – Increasing the tax on certain tobacco products
  • – Adding a sales tax for online purchases
  • – Applying Maryland’s 6% sales tax to motor fuels

 

The last proposed tax hike rose more than a few eyebrows, as it would raise the cost of fuel anywhere from 18 to 23 cents per gallon. However, there are still several questions that have not been answered. These questions include:

  1. Will it be applied at the wholesale or retail level?
  2. Does the proposal include diesel fuel or only gasoline?
  3. How will it impact filings under the International Fuel Tax Agreement?
  4. Will there be a phase-in (expected to be 2% per year over 3 years)?
  5. Will the money go to support the Transportation Trust Fund since the sales tax normally goes to support the General Fund?

Until the Governor formerly introduces his plan, speculation will continue.

Other bills that have been introduced this session that may impact the transportation industry include bills that would:

  • Require legislative approval before a toll increase.
  • Change the off-load policy for perishable products on overweight trucks.
  • Expand the MD State Police’s authority to mirror a portion of Parts 385 and 386 of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations.
  • Prohibit trucks over 48 feet total length from traveling on Maryland Route 212.
  • Prevent transfers of monies out of the Transportation Trust Fund.
  • Remove the presumption that a paid worker is an employee rather than, perhaps, an independent contractor.
  • Use vehicle height detectors in Baltimore City to enforce truck time-of-day restrictions.
  • Redefine those Class E trucks and Class F tractors that are eligible for historic vehicle registrations.

A full list of bills impacting the industry is available at www.mmtanet.com.

If you have any questions about the Governors’ Budget Proposal or any other Bills Affecting the Trucking Industry, please contact Middleton and Meads by calling 410-752-5588 or click here today!

With three locations to serve you throughout Baltimore, Washington and Virginia, Middleton and Meads will keep you “on the road.” So go ahead and do what you do best and let us take care of the rest. Our service professionals are experienced and knowledgeable. That is why companies of all sizes depend on us – day in, day out, mile after mile.

The Middleton & Meads Company has a long and respected history in the transportation industry. We are a family owned and operated company through four generations, celebrating over 90 years quality of truck, bus and equipment repair and service.

We work with you to provide the solutions to your transportation needs!

You can follow us on Facebook and Twitter as well!

Sources:

Maryland Motor Truck Association – MMTA E-News

Maryland Motor Truck Association’s Bull & Oyster Roast and Trade Show

Thursday, February 2nd, 2012

On Thursday, February 23, the Maryland Motor Truck Association (MMTA) is holding a Bull & Oyster Roast and Trade Show. The event promises to be a fun time, with great food, beer, door prizes, and outstanding vendors. We are expecting a big turnout!  And with space limited to 650 and ticket price increases after February 16, you should get your tickets as soon as possible.

Visit www.mmtanet.com/files/oysterroastform.pdf and reserve your tickets today!

About MMTA

Through the collective strength of its members, MMTA has developed effective programs that keep our members’ operating costs down, influence legislative and regulatory decisions in Annapolis and Washington, and keep our members up to date on the many regulations affecting commercial motor transportation.

MMTA is a non-profit, member-driven trade organization that has been serving Maryland’s commercial trucking industry since 1935. Today, MMTA is one of the largest trucking associations in the country, representing 1,000 member companies.

Other Upcoming Events

Feb. 9: Drug and Alcohol Seminar; 8:30 a.m.; MMTA; Baltimore, MD.

Feb. 16: Western MD Chapter; 6:00 p.m.; The Plaza; Hagerstown, MD.

Register: https://connect.computility.com/form/index.php?id=1c6c2e80eedc58b6f05a4d17dde8810a

If you have any questions about the MMTA’s Oyster, Bull Roast and Trade Show, please contact Middleton and Meads by calling 410-752-5588 or click here today!

With three locations to serve you throughout Baltimore, Washington and Virginia, Middleton and Meads will keep you “on the road.” So go ahead and do what you do best and let us take care of the rest. Our service professionals are experienced and knowledgeable. That is why companies of all sizes depend on us – day in, day out, mile after mile.

The Middleton & Meads Company has a long and respected history in the transportation industry. We are a family owned and operated company through four generations, celebrating over 90 years quality of truck, bus and equipment repair and service.

We work with you to provide the solutions to your transportation needs!

You can follow us on Facebook and Twitter as well!

Sources:

Maryland Motor Truck Association – MMTA E-News