U.P. propane shortage prompts order
LANSING – Gov. Rick Snyder has issued an executive order declaring a State of Energy Emergency in Michigan due to temporary shortages of propane in areas of the Upper Peninsula.
“Michiganders and those visiting the Upper Peninsula who rely on propane for heat and other uses are in our thoughts,” said Snyder. “This executive order will help make sure that there is enough supply in the coming days and weeks until problems are resolved.”
The propane shortage was caused by increased demand due to higher than average usage for crop drying in the Midwest and Great Plains area, winter weather setting in sooner and more severely than anticipated, and because of repairs to the Cochin propane pipeline serving the Upper Midwest.
Propane carriers must drive longer distances, go through long wait times, work longer hours and are having difficulty meeting supply needs in concert with state and federal hours-of-service regulations.
The executive order suspends state and federal regulations relating to hours-of-service for motor carriers and drivers transporting propane within Michigan, enabling these individuals to exceed the number of hours and consecutive days in which they can operate a commercial motor vehicle.
Motor carriers or drivers currently subject to an out-of-service order, in which operations are prohibited, are not eligible for the exemption and suspension until the out-of-service order expires or the conditions for rescission have been satisfied.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and the Michigan State Police require that drivers for motor carriers operating under the Declaration of Energy Emergency must have a copy of the declaration in their possession.