CDL Proposal Draws ARA Fire

The Agricultural Retailers Association (ARA) says the proposed Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) training requirements don’t enhance safety, and is urging retailers to contact their legislators.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has proposed training requirements (49 CFR Parts 380, 383, and 384) for new CDL drivers. The complex rule expands the FMCSA role in training and other areas. While ARA supports driver education in both behind-the-wheel training and training in security areas, the organization says some of the proposed rule’s sections are seriously flawed and should not become final.

According to a press release, ARA officials discussed the rule with a wide variety of interested parties — including the American Trucking Associations, ARA members, state associations, and others — to determine ARA’s position.

"ARA supports driver training, driver safety, and more security practices; but the proposed rule does not enhance safety," the press release states. "ARA believes the rule should be opposed for several reasons. First, additional training requirements will only exacerbate the existing driver shortage. Second, if driver-training programs need accreditation by FMCSA, then all internal training programs for new drivers could be discontinued. Third, the potential costs associated with this rule are very burdensome.

"ARA is not against any driver training that could lead to a better safety record, but this rule does not address that need," according to the press release. "The rule is costly, will not assist agriculture with additional drivers, and takes away retailer training and self -certification programs."

The proposed rule is available by clicking here

ARA is providing a letter template for retailers to express concerns of the proposed rule to FMCSA by clicking here

ARA’s instructions for the letter preparation are available by clicking here  

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