New Hours of Service Proposal Favors RMC Industry
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Last week, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) released its long-awaited proposal to update Hours of Service (HOS) rules. As an issue of importance to the industry, NRMCA has been actively advocating for greater flexibility with the HOS rules for industry drivers and for less confusion surrounding how to remain compliant. These sentiments have been communicated to FMSCA numerous times over the past few years, heard by FMCSA, and acted upon in our favor as well.
We are happy to relay that this latest proposal also tilts in the industry’s favor. Not only will the elements of the proposal benefit the industry when they’re finalized, but FMCSA specifically relied upon the ready mixed concrete industry’s recent HOS exemptions and the industry’s excellent safety record as justification for the new changes. Specifically, the newly proposed changes will extend the flexibilities mixer drivers have been afforded over recent years to drivers of all other commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) used in the industry. Once finalized, drivers of aggregate haulers and cement tankers will receive the same flexibilities NRMCA has secured for mixer drivers.
FMCSA stated today, “Based on the detailed public comments, FMCSA’s proposed rule on hours of service offers five key revisions to the existing HOS rules:
- The Agency proposes to increase safety and flexibility for the 30-minute break rule by tying the break requirement to eight hours of driving time without an interruption for at least 30 minutes, and allowing the break to be satisfied by a driver using on duty, not driving status, rather than off duty.
- The Agency proposes to modify the sleeper-berth exception to allow drivers to split their required 10 hours off duty into two periods: one period of at least seven consecutive hours in the sleeper berth and the other period of not less than two consecutive hours, either off duty or in the sleeper berth. Neither period would count against the driver’s 14 hour driving window.
- The Agency proposes to allow one off-duty break of at least 30 minutes, but not more than three hours, that would pause a truck driver’s 14-hour driving window, provided the driver takes 10 consecutive hours off-duty at the end of the work shift.
- The Agency proposes to modify the adverse driving conditions exception by extending by two hours the maximum window during which driving is permitted.
- The Agency proposes a change to 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.”
FMCSA will be accepting comments on the proposal for 45 days once it’s published in the Federal Register (click hereto review the proposal).
This latest development is another huge HOS win for the industry. NRMCA will be submitting comments in support of the proposal and urges all NRMCA members to do so as well.
For more information, contact Kevin Walgenbach at firstname.lastname@example.org.