Our cold winter has created a big need for propane and heating oil in Michigan.

That need has led to a shortage and a "state of emergency" in Michigan.

Governor Rick Snyder declared the energy emergency last week.

The declaration will remain in effect through the end of January or until the energy emergency is over, whichever happens first.

Michigan.gov explains:

The executive order suspends state and federal regulations relating to hours-of-service for motor carriers and drivers transporting heating oil and propane within Michigan, enabling these individuals to exceed the number of hours and consecutive days in which they can operate a commercial motor vehicle.

Transporters have been encountering frequent equipment failure and hazardous road conditions, resulting in longer driving times and working hours and an increased effort to deliver individual loads.

Fewer restrictions make a lot of sense, especially when Michigan families need heat in their homes.

Follow Matt Milhouse on Facebook and Twitter.  Listen to 100.5 The River weekdays, 10am – 3pm.