FMCSA Modernize HOS Rules Giving American Truck Drivers More Flexibility

The wait is over. The final rule was published today March 14, 2020 by the FMCSA which details regulation changes for commercial motor vehicle drivers.

There are four major revisions to HOS rules:

  1. The Agency will increase safety and flexibility for the 30-minute break rule by requiring a break after 8 hours of consecutive driving and allowing the break to be satisfied by a driver using on-duty, not driving status, rather than off-duty status.

  2. The Agency will modify the sleeper-berth exception to allow drivers to split their required 10 hours off duty into two periods: an 8/2 split, or a 7/3 split—with neither period counting against the driver’s 14‑hour driving window.

  3. The Agency will modify the adverse driving conditions exception by extending by two hours the maximum window during which driving is permitted.

  4. The Agency will change the short-haul exception available to certain commercial drivers by lengthening the drivers’ maximum on‑duty period from 12 to 14 hours and extending the distance limit within which the driver may operate from 100 air miles to 150 air miles.

Source: FMSCA

These revisions were determined based (in part) on comments and conversations collected and reviewed by the FMCSA back in August 2019.

Revisions to the HOS rules are taking place with the intent to improve safety on America’s roadways. According to the FMCSA website, the new HOS regulations will also provide an estimated $274 million of annualized cost savings for the US economy and American consumers.

The new rules will go into effect 120 days after publication in the Federal Register.

For more details please visit the FMCSA website here.

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