ATA Cries Foul Over FMCSA’s Restart Study

Truck Tonnage Up Slightly For February 2013

Yesterday, the FMCSA released the results of a study the agency says is proof positive that the new 34-hour restart leaves drivers feeling more alert and less fatigued.

While the American Trucking Association applauded the FMCSA for releasing the results of the study, the ATA says what the report didn’t show might be just as significant.

“We appreciate FMCSA releasing the results of its restart field study,” said Dave Osiecki, ATA executive vice president and chief of national advocacy. “However, in many respects this short report is lacking critical analyses on several important issues.”

The ATA says that the report failed to evaluate the real-world safety effects of the once weekly restart.  In addition, says the ATA, the study did not address the real-wold implications of putting more trucks on the road during the busier daytime hours.

“The study acknowledges that the two or more night restart periods result in more trucks on the road during the day, but it does not address the corresponding safety or congestion impacts,” Osiecki said.

The ATA also said the report lacks insight into the health benefits of the restart changes.

“While the study includes some findings favorable to certain portions of the new restart rule, the incomplete nature of the analysis and the lack of justification for the once-weekly use restriction is consistent with the flawed analyses that led the agency to make these changes in the first place,” Osiecki said.