July 18, 2012
The Maryland State Highway Administration is now providing truckers a way to carry paperless permits, allowing drivers to display them in electronic format during inspections, replacing traditional paper-issued permits and attachments. Maryland is the first state on the East Coast, and the second in the nation, to issue electronic hauling permits for the trucking industry."Whether a private citizen moving a boat for the season or a major hauler deploying supplies from the Port or across the country, drivers can now display electronic permits," says State Highway Administrator Melinda B. Peters. "This presents time-savings benefits and reduces paper usage, so environmentally and financially e-permits are green." MSHA's Motor Carrier Division manages and permits approximately 160,000 oversized moves each year and issues approximately 600-800 permits each day. E-permits can potentially save MSHA the printing of nearly 50,000 pieces of paper each month. "This is good news for our members," says Maryland Motor Truck Association President and CEO Louis Campion. "Maryland is taking the steps necessary to lead the nation in delivering 21st century advancements to the trucking industry that enhance doing business with the state."Maryland State regulations require that haulers carry the permit and attachments to validate the safe transport of loads as a safety and compliance measure. Until this week, truck drivers needed to carry a paper copy of the state-issued permit on all applicable transports. Trucks are often on the road with loads or at jobsites and do not have the capability to print paper copies. Maryland enforcement agencies have the ability to access the Automated Hauling Permit System to validate application submissions against log books to verify travel start times. If the use of e-permitting is abused by anyone or any company, the privilege will be revoked for that individual and company. The e-permit is optional; customers may continue to carry printed hard copies of permits and attachments. For more information about SHA's hauling permit section, go to http://sha.md.gov/Index.aspx?PageId=23&d=12.