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Motor Carrier Regulations Expert:
House Passes Bill Which Leaves Hours of Service Rollback in Place!

Trucking FMCSR Expert Witness / Truck Accident Investigation Expert Witness Articles

By Scott Greene

At almost midnight on Tuesday June 9, 2015 a Department of Transportation ( DOT ) funding bill passed in the House that keeps in place the Hours of Service (HOS) rollback that was implemented in December of 2014.

fmcsalogoTruck Driver Regulation Expert

The Senate has yet to propose their own version of the DOT funding for 2016. The House bill, however, may be used by the Senate as a starting point. The lack of a Senate bill may delay the ratification of any legislation. The Senate will likely pass its own version of a DOT-funding measure. If it does, the House and the Senate will have to work out any differences between the bills.

The $55 billion appropriations bill, however, faces an uphill battle. President Obama has indicated that he would veto the legislation if it was delivered in its current form.

The bill also calls for the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) to cease work on its study to increase the minimum amount of liability insurance. Back in 2013, Evidence Solutions, Inc. – Heavy Truck Division wrote about Rep. Matt Cartwright’s (D-Pa.) proposal to increase the minimum liability insurance that trucking companies are currently required to carry from $750,000 to $4,422,000. The existing insurance requirement hasn’t changed in over three decades. The FMCSA began studying an increase in the minimum required liability insurance in 2014.

Wireless roadside inspection technology is also blocked by the legislation. This technology allows law enforcement to efficiently retrieve information about the driver’s HOS.

In addition, the legislation allows for the nationwide use of double trailers up to 33 feet long each.

The bill’s language does allow for the 2013 HOS rules to be reinstated based upon the results of the FMCSA’s study about the effectiveness of the 2013 rule. The study is currently looking into whether or not drivers who operate under the 2013 rule are less fatigued and operate safer than those which operate under pre-2013 rules.

 

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