ATLANTA — Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp issued a State of Emergency aimed at supply chain issues, which went into effect on Saturday.
The executive order aims to soften many of the detrimental effects of the COVID-19 crisis that is still having impacts on the global supply chain.
One of the biggest impacts will be on the number of hours that drivers are allowed to be on the road.
“The federal rules and regulations limiting hours that operators of commercial vehicles may drive are suspended to ensure the supply chain for all supplies, goods, and services throughout Georgia is uninterrupted,” the executive order says. “This declared emergency justifies a suspension of Part 395 (driver’s hours of service) of Title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations. The suspension will remain in effect for 30 days or until the emergency condition ceases to exist, whichever is less.”
But, this doesn’t mean that companies can require drivers to go nonstop. The order states that no motor carrier operating under the terms of this State of Emergency will require ill or fatigued driver to operate a motor vehicle.
“A driver who notifies a motor vehicle carrier that he or she needs immediate rest will be given at least 10 consecutive hours off-duty before being required to return to service,” the order states.
The order also gives additional details for securing oversized permits and guidance on the size/weight permitted for commercial vehicles.
“Commercial vehicles operating outside the normal weight, height, and length restrictions under the authority of this State of Emergency shall be issued permits by the Georgia Department of Public Safety,” the order states. “Said vehicles shall be subject to any special conditions the Georgia Department of Public Safety may list on applicable permits.”
Weight limits posted for bridges and similar structures will still be in effect and the executive order will not allow vehicles exceeding those limits to cross them.
The executive order will also target prices of fuel, which have been a key factor in not only soaring prices for consumers, but also those delivering goods for them.
“Price gouging related to goods and services necessary to prepare for and respond to this State of Emergency, including motor fuel and diesel fuel, would be detrimental to the social and economic welfare of the citizens of this State and is therefore prohibited,” the order states.
Kemp’s executive order will expire on Sunday, May 15 and 11:59 p.m. unless he chooses to renew it.
The full text of the executive order can be read here.
The Trucker News Staff produces engaging content for not only TheTrucker.com, but also The Trucker Newspaper, which has been serving the trucking industry for more than 30 years. With a focus on drivers, the Trucker News Staff aims to provide relevant, objective content pertaining to the trucking segment of the transportation industry. The Trucker News Staff is based in Little Rock, Arkansas.