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Commercial Driver's License Standards: Application for Exemption; Daimler Trucks North America (Daimler)

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

American Government Trucking Topics:  Daimler AG, Philipp Kehm

Commercial Driver's License Standards: Application for Exemption; Daimler Trucks North America (Daimler)

Larry W. Minor
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration
September 4, 2015


[Federal Register Volume 80, Number 172 (Friday, September 4, 2015)]
[Notices]
[Pages 53614-53615]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2015-22045]


-----------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

[Docket No. FMCSA-2012-0032]


Commercial Driver's License Standards: Application for Exemption; 
Daimler Trucks North America (Daimler)

AGENCY: Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), DOT.

ACTION: Notice of application for exemption; request for comments.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: FMCSA announces that Daimler Trucks North America (Daimler) 
has requested an exemption for one commercial motor vehicle (CMV) 
driver, Philipp Kehm, from the Federal requirement to hold a commercial 
driver's license (CDL) issued by one of the States. This engineer holds 
a valid German CDL and needs to test-drive Daimler vehicles on U.S. 
roads to better understand product requirements for these systems in 
``real world'' environments, and verify results. Daimler believes the 
requirements for a German CDL ensure that holders of the license will 
likely achieve a level of safety equal to or greater than that of 
drivers who hold a U.S. State-issued CDL.

DATES: Comments must be received on or before October 5, 2015.

[[Page 53615]]


ADDRESSES: You may submit comments identified by Federal Docket 
Management System Number FMCSA-2012-0032 by any of the following 
methods:
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: www.regulations.gov. Follow 
the online instructions for submitting comments.
     Fax: 1-202-493-2251.
     Mail: Docket Management Facility, U.S. Department of 
Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., West Building, Ground 
Floor, Room W12-140, Washington, DC 20590-0001.
     Hand Delivery or Courier: West Building, Ground Floor, 
Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. 
E.T., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.
    Instructions: All submissions must include the Agency name and 
docket number. For detailed instructions on submitting comments and 
additional information on the exemption process, see the Public 
Participation heading below. Note that all comments received will be 
posted without change to www.regulations.gov, including any personal 
information provided. Please see the Privacy Act heading below.
    Docket: For access to the docket to read background documents or 
comments received, go to www.regulations.gov at any time and in the box 
labeled ``SEARCH for'' enter FMCSA-2012-0032 and click on the tab 
labeled ``SEARCH.''
    Privacy Act: In accordance with 5 U.S.C. 553(c), DOT solicits 
comments from the public to better inform its rulemaking process. DOT 
posts these comments, without edit, including any personal information 
the commenter provides, to www.regulations.gov, as described in the 
system of records notice (DOT/ALL-14 FDMS), which can be reviewed at 
www.dot.gov/privacy.
    Public Participation: The Federal eRulemaking Portal is available 
24 hours each day, 365 days each year. You can get electronic 
submission and retrieval help and guidelines under the ``help'' section 
of the Federal eRulemaking Portal Web site. If you want us to notify 
you that we received your comments, please include a self-addressed, 
stamped envelope or postcard, or print the acknowledgement page that 
appears after submitting comments online.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mrs. Pearlie Robinson, FMCSA Driver 
and Carrier Operations Division; Office of Carrier, Driver and Vehicle 
Safety Standards; Telephone: 202-366-4325. Email: MCPSD@dot.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Background

    FMCSA has authority under 49 U.S.C. 31136(e) and 31315 to grant 
exemptions from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations. FMCSA 
must publish a notice of each exemption request in the Federal Register 
(49 CFR 381.315(a)). The Agency must provide the public an opportunity 
to inspect the information relevant to the application, including any 
safety analyses that have been conducted. The Agency must also provide 
an opportunity for public comment on the request.
    The Agency reviews the safety analyses and the public comments, and 
determines whether granting the exemption would likely achieve a level 
of safety equivalent to, or greater than, the level that would be 
achieved by the current regulation (49 CFR 381.305). The decision of 
the Agency must be published in the Federal Register (49 CFR 
381.315(b)) with the reason for granting or denying the exemption, and, 
if granted, the specific person or class of persons receiving the 
exemption, and the regulatory provision or provisions from which 
exemption is granted. The notice must specify the effective period of 
the exemption (up to 2 years), and explain the terms and conditions of 
the exemption. The exemption may be renewed (49 CFR 381.300(b)).
    Since 2012, FMCSA has granted five Daimler drivers similar 
exemptions [May 25, 2012 (77 FR 31422); July 22, 2014 (79 FR 42626); 
August 29, 2014 (79 FR 516910); March 27, 2015 (80 FR 16511)]. Each of 
these drivers held a valid German commercial license but lacked the 
U.S. residency required to obtain a CDL. FMCSA has concluded that the 
process for obtaining a German commercial license is comparable to or 
as effective as the U.S. CDL requirements and ensures that these 
drivers will likely achieve a level of safety equivalent to or greater 
than the level that would be obtained in the absence of the exemption.

Request for Exemption

    Daimler has applied for an exemption for one of its engineers from 
49 CFR 383.23, which prescribes licensing requirements for drivers 
operating CMVs in interstate or intrastate commerce. This driver, 
Philipp Kehm, holds a valid German commercial license but is unable to 
obtain a CDL in any of the U.S. States due to residency requirements. A 
copy of the application is in Docket No. FMCSA-2012-0032.
    The exemption would allow Mr. Kehm to operate CMVs in interstate or 
intrastate commerce to support Daimler field tests designed to meet 
future vehicle safety and environmental requirements and to develop 
improved safety and emission technologies. According to Daimler, Mr. 
Kehm will typically drive for no more than 6 hours per day for up to 10 
days, and 10 percent of the test driving will be on two-lane State 
highways, while 90 percent will be on interstate highways. The driving 
will consist of no more than 200 miles per day, on a biannual basis. He 
will in all cases be accompanied by a holder of a U.S. CDL who is 
familiar with the routes to be traveled. Daimler requests that the 
exemption cover a two-year period.
    FMCSA has previously determined that the process for obtaining a 
German CDL is comparable to the Federal requirements of 49 CFR part 383 
and adequately assesses a driver's ability to operate CMVs in the 
United States.

Request for Comments

    In accordance with 49 U.S.C. 31315(b)(4) and 31136(e), FMCSA 
requests public comment on Daimler's application for an exemption from 
the CDL requirements of 49 CFR 383.23. The Agency will consider all 
comments received by close of business on October 5, 2015. Comments 
will be available for examination in the docket at the location listed 
under the ADDRESSES section of this notice.

    Issued on: August 28, 2015.
Larry W. Minor,
Associate Administrator for Policy.
[FR Doc. 2015-22045 Filed 9-3-15; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-EX-P

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