The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) announced four changes to the existing hours of service (HOS) rules that relax long standing regulations on truck drivers.
The agency introduced the revisions after receiving feedback from thousands of carriers and truckers across the nation who Acting Administrator Jim Mullen claimed “needed flexibility”.
The final four revisions to HOS rules are as follows:
30 MINUTE BREAK REQUIREMENT
A 30-minute break after eight hours of driving time (instead of on-duty time) will be required and allows an on-duty/not driving period to qualify as the required break.
SLEEPER BERTH PROVISION
The sleeper berth exception will allow drivers to meet their 10-hour minimum off-duty requirement by taking either two periods—an eight and two hour split or a seven and three hour split—with neither periods counting against the driver’s 14-hour driving window.
ADVERSE DRIVING CONDITIONS EXCEPTION
Adverse driving conditions exception will be modified by extending the maximum window by two hours during these conditions.
The agency will expand the short-haul exception to 150 air miles and an additional 2 hours to on duty periods of 12 hours.
WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR TRUCKERS AND THE PUBLIC?
The change in the FMCSA regulations is being promoted as a measure to better protect the safety of truckers as well as drivers on the road around; however, only time will tell if this measure adds protection for all of us or is it simply a cost saving measure for trucking companies that puts more truck traffic on the road with more fatigued drivers behind the wheel.
If you or a loved one have been injured through the negligent actions of a tractor trailer driver or a trucking company, you are entitled to compensation. Call a trucking attorney with the Southside Injury Attorneys today at 844-810-4357 for your free consultation.