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Trump order delays implementation of FMCSA safety rule

Oklahoma residents may be aware that one of President Trump's first actions after taking the oath of office on Jan. 20 was to order federal agencies to delay the implementation of all new regulations for 60 days. Trump has promised to slash red tape and eliminate unneeded government rules, and the White House says that the president needs the time to review pending regulations before approving or rejecting them.

A new rule dealing with how commercial vehicle drivers are trained was published in the Federal Register in December and was scheduled to be implemented on Feb. 6, but the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has announced that this date has now been put on hold due to the president's order. The agency's statement did not indicate whether or not the White House has any objections to the rule, but it did point out that further delays are possible if this proves to be the case.

Even delays beyond 60 days are unlikely to trouble road safety groups too greatly because the rule in question will only apply to individuals who are issued commercial driver's licenses on or after Feb. 7, 2020. However, many such groups have voiced objections to some of the provisions of the Minimum Training Requirements for Entry-Level Commercial Vehicle Operators rule. The regulation calls for a registry of the nation's certified trainers and establishes a core classroom curriculum, but it does not set a minimum requirement for behind-the-wheel training.

Measures designed to improve the skills of America's commercial vehicle drivers will likely be supported by personal injury attorneys, and they may study driving records carefully in truck accident cases. While prior bad acts are not generally admissible in court, a history of recklessness could motivate insurance companies to settle matters quickly.

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