Truckers have another chance to give input on hours of service

September 10, 2019

Mark Schremmer

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Soon, truck drivers will have another opportunity to tell FMCSA leaders in person what they think of the agency’s plan for hours of service.

FMCSA’s second public listening session on its notice of proposed rulemaking for hours-of-service reform is scheduled for Sept. 17 in Washington, D.C.

The listening session will give truck drivers and other industry stakeholders an opportunity to present comments, views and relevant research regarding the agency’s plan to provide commercial drivers more flexibility within the hours-of-service rules.

On Aug. 22, FMCSA published a notice of proposed rulemaking in the Federal Register that included five main changes to the hours of service:

  • The limits for short-haul operations would increase from 12 to 14 hours and from 100 air-miles to 150.
  • The adverse driving provision would allow a driver up to a 16-hour window within which to complete up to 13 hours of driving if the driver encounters adverse conditions.
  • The 30-minute break requirement would be modified, prohibiting driving for more than eight consecutive hours without at least one 30-minute change in duty status. This would allow 30 minutes of on-duty, not driving time, off-duty time, or sleeper-berth time to qualify as a break.”
  • In addition to splits of 10/0 and 8/2, drivers would be allowed a split-sleeper option of 7/3.
  • Drivers would have the option of stopping the clock a minimum of 30 minutes and up to three hours consecutively once per duty period.

The listening session will be from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. Eastern time on Sept. 17 at the U.S. Department of Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Ave. SE in Washington, D.C.

For those unable to attend in person, FMCSA will provide livestream video of the meeting. Questions can be emailed to listeningsession@dot.gov.

A previous listening session was held in August at the Great American Trucking Show in Dallas.

The 45-day comment period on the proposal opened on Aug. 22, and comments can be made at the Regulations.gov website by using docket number FMCSA-2018-0248 until Oct. 7.

Mark Schremmer

Mark Schremmer, associate editor, joined Land Line in 2015. An award-winning journalist and former assistant news editor at The Topeka Capital-Journal, he brings fresh ideas, solid reporting skills, and nearly two decades of journalism experience to our staff.