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4 Things to Know About the Final Hours Of Service Rule (HOS)


FMCSA Hours of Service Final RulingCDL Life has followed the negotiations and rule changes that went into the final ruling on Hours of Service last year in November. The FMCSA claims that this ruling on working hours for truck drivers will help reduce fatigued drivers who may be a danger on the roadways. Independent truck drivers and smaller carriers claim that this kind of legislation puts too much strain on smaller businesses while giving even more unfair advantage to big carriers.

Changes made to HOS will soon be in effect.  The effective date of the Final Rule is February 27, 2012, and the compliance date of selected provisions is July 1, 2013.

“Trucking is a difficult job, and a big rig can be deadly when a driver is tired and overworked,” said Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. “This final rule will help prevent fatigue-related truck crashes and save lives. Truck drivers deserve a work environment that allows them to perform their jobs safely.”

Drivers and companies must comply with the HOS final rule by July 1, 2013.

1. Drivers are not permitted to drive after 8 hours without a break of at least
30 minutes. Drivers can take the 30-minute rest anytime during the 8-hour

2. The 34-hour reset can be used only once per week and must include two full
consecutive periods of rest between the hours of 1:00 a.m. and 5:00 a.m.
This makes the reset time variable, with 34 hours being a minimum.

3. No changes were made to the basic rule of 11 hours of drive time. However,
with the requirement of the 30-minute break, the effective use of the 14-
hour duty day has been reduced to 13.5 hours.

4. Flexibility has been added to the “Off Duty” requirement of 10 hours to
allow 2 hours of off-duty time to be spent in a moving vehicle as a co-driver
before or after 8 hours of “Sleeper-Berth” status( this applies to team drivers)

Read the FAQ about Hours of Service specifics at the FMCSA’s official website.



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