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Trucking Regulatory Compliance Expert Witness:
"FMCSA Updates its Website's Hours of Service Provisions"

The FMCSR Provision for Rest Periods Will be Rolled Back for One Year.

Trucking Regulations Expert Witness / Trucking Law Expert Witness Articles

By Scott Greene

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) updated its website on Dec. 17, 2014 after the passage of the federal government’s $1 trillion spending bill. The site reflects the suspension of the 34 hour restart provision of the Hours of Service (HOS) Regulations. The bill was signed into law by President Obama on December 16, 2014.

2102 HOS Rules

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) -  Hours of Service Regulations

The HOS Regulations page has a notice that says: “The Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act of 2015 was enacted on December 16, 2014, suspending enforcement of requirements for use of the34-hour restart.” The FMCSA’s requirement that drivers take off two consecutive nights between 1 a.m. and 5 a.m. during a 34-hour restart/rest is suspended through Sept. 30 2015. The suspension will expire when the funding law expires unless otherwise acted upon by the Federal Government. The funding bill also requires the Department of Transportation (DOT) Inspector General to provide Congress a report about the restart rule’s claims.

Truckers are still required to account for at least one30-minute break during their shifts and adhere to all other provisions of the HOS regulations.

A bipartisan group of senators and key GOP transportation leaders supported the measure in the House. The group argued the new restart rules caused truck drivers to drive during congested daytime hours, increasing the risk of accidents. The likely 2015 chairwoman of the transportation funding subcommittee, Senator Susan Collins of Maine, led the effort to include the hours-of-service provision in the funding law.

American Trucking Associations (ATA), based in Arlington VA,strongly backed Collins’ efforts. Chairman of the ATA Duane Long, who is also the chairman of Longistics, which is based in Raleigh, North Carolina, said,“Fleets from around the country, including mine, tried to tell FMCSA that the previous rules were working just fine and that these new restart provisions were going to cause unintended problems.”

Law Enforcement, Motor Carriers, Commercial Driver’s License Holders who have questions about the suspension are encouraged to contact the FMCSA for more information.

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