ATA seeks to change definition of tank vehicle regarding truck driver jobs

The American Trucking Association is attempting to change the recently amended definition of a tank vehicle set for by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, in order to protect truck driver jobs.

The organization recently changed its standards for commercial driver’s license testing and made them stricter.

It defined a tank vehicle as one designed to transport any liquid or gaseous material in tanks that are either permanently or temporarily attached to the chassis and are rated at more than 119 gallons and aggregated to 1,000 gallons or more. A flatbed carrying empty tanks rated at 1,000 gallons or more is not considered a tank carrier.

According to TruckingInfo, the problem is that under the new definition these types of shipments cause the need for a tank endorsement on the driver’s commercial license. This affects many private fleets but large less-than-truckload carriers are especially hard hit, ATA said in a letter to the FMCSA.

The letter said, “These motor carriers do not know in advance what types of containers will be moving on shipments between their terminals. Obtaining this endorsement is burdensome, requiring additional training, time off work and substantial costs and fees.”

States have until July 2014 to adopt the new definition, unless the definition is once again changed.