South Dakota declares emergency for low inventories, outages of propane

January 20, 2023

SJ Munoz


South Dakota continues to experience low inventories and outages of propane, according to an executive order issued on Jan. 19.

“Drivers of propane transport vehicles are required to deliver propane necessary to maintain the supply of this product in order to enable the people of South Dakota to continue normal heating functions,” the order said. “It is the responsibility of the state to assist the people of South Dakota in meeting problems of mutual concern and transportation of this product in demand for heating needs.”

Certain relief from SDCL 49-28A-3 and 49 CFR Parts 390-399 is granted by the South Dakota emergency, effective through Feb. 18, for drivers of propane transport vehicles in the interest of public safety.

Propane transport companies shall not require fatigued drivers to operate a motor vehicle. A driver who informs a carrier they need rest must be given adequate rest time before they are required to return to service.

The order does not provide any exemption from the controlled substances, alcohol use and testing requirements, commercial driver’s license requirements, financial responsibility requirements, applicable size and weight requirements, or any other portion of the regulations not specifically identified.

The state’s order follows a regional emergency declaration by FMCSA that includes Colorado, Kansas, Nebraska, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas, Utah and Wyoming.

A previous order was issued in South Dakota also due to low inventories and outages of propane as well as heating fuel. That order expired on Jan. 15.

As stated in both South Dakota orders, the return of normal supply flows to fuel terminals in the state is unknown. LL

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