COVID-19 Information for VFDA Members
VFDA staff is on the job and available to answer your questions and help where we can.
Governor Phil Scott’s most recent allows crews of five to work outdoors and inside unoccupied structures. Manufacturing and distribution operations may resume with a maximum of five people if they are at least six feet apart at all times. Resumption of in-person shopping at outdoor retail operations are also allowed as long as there are no more than 10 people including customers and staff. As a reminder, those that distribute fuel or keep equipment running that uses fuel are considered part of Vermont’s “essential workforce.” Businesses that provide “fuel products and supply” are on the essential list. Go to to download the Vermont Executive Order that declares those in the fuel industry are part of the “essential workforce” and to download a template letter for you and/or your employees to carry if they get stopped in Vermont. This document is not required, but may be helpful.
The Governor’s Executive Order also requires businesses to complete and document mandatory health and safety training by Monday, May 4. The training includes an overview of the signs and symptoms of COVID-19 and an explanation of how the disease is spread as well as lessons on social distancing and the use of personal protective equipment (PPE). The guidance in the 47 page training document contain is the same information that most of you have already implemented. to download the training document and to download a fillable training certificate for each employee to fill out and print after they have reviewed the materials.
Resources for Individuals and Businesses
for a summary of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, And Economic Security Act (CARES Act)
This is the $2 trillion stimulus bill that was signed into law on March 27.
Small business owners can apply for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan of up to $10,000
The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) requires certain employers to provide their employees with paid sick leave and expanded family and medical leave for specified reasons related to COVID-19.
The Small Business Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) provides loans to eligible small businesses to cover payroll and other expenses.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has issued a national emergency declaration to provide hours-of-service regulatory relief to commercial vehicle drivers transporting emergency relief in response to the nationwide coronavirus outbreak. . Keep a copy in your driver files and on the road where the hours of service of the driver may be questioned. The waiver is effective through midnight, May 15, 2020.
While the Canadian border is closed to "non-essential traffic,” the transportation of gasoline, diesel, propane and heating oil is considered essential and is still permitted.
All Vermont DMV in-person transactions have been suspended until further notice. Transactions can still be completed through the mail, electronic methods or over the phone. Vermont has issued a temporary waiver of IRP/IFTA and 72 hour trip permit requirements. Vermont asks that no enforcement action be taken against vehicles with no or expired IRP or IFTA credentials for 90 days from the date of the Emergency Declaration. All fuel distributor reports required to be filed with DMV are still required to be filed on time.
Any Vermont vehicle registration or drivers license expiring March 31, 2020 will be valid for an additional 90 days. VFDA has confirmed that a 90 grace period is in the works for oilheat and gas certifications.
Most Vermont towns require an overweight permit for any truck in excess of 24,000 pounds. Fuel trucks can get an exemption for $5 (or $10 for an entire fleet) through an annual permit. While due on March 31 of every year, VFDA and others in the trucking industry have asked for a 90 day grace period, due to the closure of many town offices because of COVID-19. We have not been granted a reprieve….yet. to read our request to Governor Scott. for a list of towns that require permitting, where to apply, and to download a permit form.
The U.S. DOT has issued guidance for employers who may have difficulty conducting mandated federal drug and alcohol testing due the recent COVID-19 outbreak. for more information.
Training and Vermont Regulations for Heating Fuel and Heating Service Companies
We understand that some of your employees are working from home and want to provide online materials that will keep them engaged. VFDA is developing a catalog of online resources that are geared to the fuel industry. These include technical education (some for credit) and customer service training. to review.
The Vermont Public Service Department will begin asking the operators of jurisdictional LPG systems to send procedures and records electronically for Operator Qualification (OQ) and Standard Records inspections. DPS will reach out to each operator individually to assess their office situation and find a way to make these remote inspections less burdensome.
Under Vermont law (CP-111), propane sellers can not deny service to a customer if they have cash for a minimum delivery, even if they have back balance. Propane sellers are required to notify their customer at least 14 days before disconnecting service. They must continue service if the customer offers a reasonable repayment plan. No disconnection can occur during the heating season if the customer provides the seller with a physician’s certificate. The heating season is defined as CP-111 between November 1 and April 15.
While the Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) does not have the legal authority to waive the requirement that new customer fuel oil tanks be inspected before first fill, they do have discretion when it comes to enforcement. Additionally, the DEC has confirmed they will accept “virtual” tank inspections in which the customer provides pictures or video of their tank.
If you have a customer having trouble paying for heating fuel, there is still crisis fuel assistance money available. The Fuel Assistance Office has confirmed to VFDA that they are working to ensure that those that recently lost their jobs receive eligibility consideration by removing the 30 day income “look back” requirement. Vermonters in need of help should call 1-800-479-6151 to apply for emergency heating assistance.
VFDA has cancelled much of our spring training program. We are in the process of rescheduling. We will notify anyone that has registered for a class if and when it is cancelled. Contact VFDA Office Manager Stephanie Austin ( or 802-223-7750 ext. 2) if you have any questions about training.
The Vermont Fuel Conference at the Spruce Lodge in Stowe has been rescheduled for September 14 and 15.
DOT Guidance on Compliance with Regulations
FMCSA Expanded Under 49 CFR § 390.23 No. 2020-002 (Relating to COVID-19)
Commercial Learners The waiver allows a commercial learner permit driver to operate a commercial motor vehicle alone.
Enforcement Notice on
Waiver for States, Operating Commercial Motor Vehicles
PHMSA Relating to HazMat Training