New hours-of-service rules take effect

By CCJ Staff on

Enforcement for the hours-of-service changes made final in December 2011 began Monday, July 1,  the date when carriers and drivers began being held accountable for complying with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s on-duty requirements.

The most notable change to the hours rules are that drivers are now limited to one 34-hour restart per week, and every restart must include two 1 a.m. to 5 a.m. periods. Also, the amount of hours a driver can work in a week has been reduced from 82 to 70.

The new rules also include penalties for carriers who allow drivers to “egregiously” violate HOS rules, with “egregious” defined as allowing a driver to drive more than three hours beyond the limit.

The rule has technically been effective since February of last year, but enforcement begins today. The American Trucking Associations has fought the rule in court, along with the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association.

FMCSA has some informational charts on its website regarding the changes — Click here to see them.