Following Missouri’s lead, the state of Kansas is suspending some motor carrier rules to expedite relief shipments heading to tornado victims in Joplin, Mo.
Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback issued an executive order granting temporary relief from hours-of-service regulations for truckers involved in relief efforts.
“The recovery efforts for Joplin will be ongoing for quite some time,” Brownback said. Missouri suspended HOS rules for relief efforts after the May 22 storm.
The tornado killed at least 125 people, according to the latest fatality count, and injured hundreds. Many people are still missing four days after the storm.
More than 2,000 buildings were destroyed in Joplin, a city of 50,000 people in Southwestern Missouri and a trucking and transportation hub for the region.
The damage from the Joplin tornado may run as high as $3 billion, according to Eqecat, a company that estimates the cost of disasters.
The relaxation of Kansas’s trucking rules through June 22 will help expedite food, supplies, medicine and other necessities to Missouri, Brownback said.
In addition to relaxing HOS rules, Kansas will waive the fees associated with oversize/overweight permits, though carriers still must obtain permits.
Truckers involved in relief and recovery efforts will receive priority service and may operate during low-visibility, night, holiday and curfew hours, the order said.
Registration and fuel tax permits required by the state are suspended. Carriers may benefit from the waiver while under load and returning empty.
Contact William B. Cassidy at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at @wbcassidy_joc.