New rules for hours of service for truck drivers are due by July 26, 2011

 

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is under a court imposed deadline to adopt new regulations relating to hours of service (HOS) by July 26, 2011.  The proposed changes are summarized at:

http://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/rules-regulations/topics/hos-proposed/hos-proposed.aspx

One of the major issues is whether the maximum hours for driving should be set at 10 or 11 within the “Driving Window.”  This issue is being hotly debated among the various interest groups, with the trucking industry favoring the longer 11 hour period, while safety advocacy groups favor the shorter 10 hour period.  FMCSA seems to be favoring the shorter, 10 hour, period.  There are other proposed changes to the existing HOS rules, which are complicated, concerning the definition of the “driving window,” when the time limits “restart”,  when time in the vehicle as a passenger is considered on-duty time, and so forth.  There is a good summary of all the proposed changes on the FMCSA website.  Public comment is being welcomed.

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