Friday, March 01, 2024

FMCSA asks for comments on electronic rear-view systems exemption

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is seeking public feedback on Convoy Technologies, Inc.’s request for an exemption to allow the use of its Electronic Rear View System (ERVS) in commercial motor vehicles (CMVs), as an alternative to the standard two rear-vision mirrors mandated by federal safety regulations. This exemption aims to permit motor carriers to operate CMVs with Convoy’s ERVS, a camera-based visibility system, instead of traditional mirrors to enhance safety and visibility. Public comments are invited until April 1, 2024. For further details or to submit a comment, visit the FMCSA website here.

Section 393.80(a) of the FMCSRs requires that each bus, truck, and truck tractor be equipped with two rear-vision mirrors, one on each side. The mirrors must be positioned to reflect to the driver a view of the highway to the rear and the area along both sides of the CMV. Section 393.80(a) cross-references the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s standard for mirrors on motor vehicles (i.e., 49 CFR 571.111, Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 111). Paragraph S7.1 of FMVSS No. 111 provides requirements for mirrors on multipurpose passenger vehicles and trucks with a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) greater than 4,536 kg and less than 11,340 kg and each bus, other than a school bus, with a GVWR of more than 4,536 kg. Paragraph S8.1 provides requirements for mirrors on multipurpose passenger vehicles and trucks with a GVWR of 11,340 kg or more. Convoy has applied for an exemption from § 393.80(a) to allow motor carriers to operate CMVs equipped with the company’s ERVS installed as an alternative to the two rear-vision mirrors required by the FMCSRs.

This technology is generally considered a camera-based rear visibility system, or Camera Monitor System (CMS). The docket referenced at the beginning of this notice includes a copy of the application.

Per 49 U.S.C. 31315(b)(6), FMCSA requests public comment from all interested persons on Convoy’s application for an exemption to allow motor carriers to use its ERVS instead of the rear-vision mirrors required by 49 CFR 393.80(a). All comments received before the close of business on the comment closing date indicated at the beginning of this notice will be considered and will be available for examination in the docket at the location listed under the ADDRESSES section of this notice. Comments received after the comment closing date will be filed in the public docket and will be considered to the extent practicable. In addition to late comments, FMCSA will also continue to file, in the public docket, relevant information that becomes available after the comment closing date. Interested persons should continue to examine the public docket for new material.