Daily Rules, Proposed Rules, and Notices of the Federal Government
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Anyone can search the electronic form of comments received into any of our dockets by the name of the individual submitting the comment (or signing the comment, if submitted on behalf of an association, business, labor union, etc.). You may review a Privacy Act notice regarding our public dockets in the January 17, 2008, issue of the
On August 27, 2012, FMCSA published a DFR to amend the definition of “gross combination weight rating” (GCWR) in 49 CFR parts 383 and 390. The DFR provided that the rule would be effective October 26, 2012, if no adverse comments were received by September 26, 2012. In view of three adverse comments submitted to the docket, FMCSA withdraws the DFR through this notice.
Commenter John F. Nowak stated that the definition of GCWR should not be amended until the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) changes its regulations to require manufacturers to include a vehicle's GCWR in addition to its gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) on the certification label. He argued that it was difficult at this time for drivers, motor carriers, and law enforcement officers to obtain GCWR information quickly. Mr. Nowak claimed that currently only the second half of the existing definition of GCWR is readily available for use by carrier and enforcement personnel. This commenter went on to say that because FMCSA must be aware of the difficulty in obtaining the manufacturer's GCWR for any particular vehicle, the second sentence of the existing definition must be retained.
Currently, the definitions in 49 CFR 383.5 and 390.5 both define
Mr. Nowak agrees with FMCSA that the definition of GCWR should ultimately be changed to reflect NHTSA's definition of that term. Prior to this change, however, he suggests that the FMCSA place the responsibility for obtaining GCWR information on law enforcement officers and refrain from taking adverse action against drivers or carriers for failure to have this information.
Commenter Bryce Baker indicates that manufacturers do not list the GCWR on the vehicle. Even if such a value is available from the manufacturer, he states, the time needed to obtain the information would make enforcement fruitless. Although commenter David S. McQueen also opposes the change included in the DFR, his position seems to be based on a misunderstanding of the GCWR definition used by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.