FORT WORTH, Texas — Richard Thorpe, president of the Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association (TSCRA) issued the following statement after the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) announced an additional 90-day extension of the agriculture exemption from the Electronic Logging Device (ELD) mandate:
“We applaud Secretary Chao and the Department of Transportation for recognizing the concerns of ranchers and extending the agricultural exemption from the ELD mandate for an additional 90-days. We continue to have serious concerns with the ELD mandate and its implications on hauling live animals, such as cattle. It is our hope that the additional time will allow DOT to develop livestock-specific solutions and still maintain safety on our roads.
“The safety record of those who carry our cattle is already commendable, but our industry needs time to develop transportation practices that build on our strong safety records and the unique challenges of moving living beings over long distances. We look forward to continuing to work with DOT to create regulations that support a safe and practical livestock transportation segment of our ag industry.”
In 2012, the Commercial Motor Vehicle Safety Enhancement Act became law, requiring DOT to create and enforce an electronic logging device rule. As of December 2017, all motor carriers and drivers who are required to keep paper records were required to have installed an ELD in their trucks. Prior to implementation, DOT Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) waived this regulation for agricultural haulers for 90 days, which, prior to the extension, would have expired March 18, 2018.