On May 14, 2020, FMCSA announced the anticipated Hours-Of-Service (HOS) final rule. The final rule follows the Noticed Of Proposed Rule Making (NPRM) that was published by the agency last August and is expected to be published in the Federal Register in the coming week. 

The following four changes have been incorporated into this rule:

Short-Haul Operations. Extends a driver's maximum on-duty period from 12 to 14 hours and extends the allowed travel radius from 100 to 150 air miles.

30-Minute Break. Requires a 30-minute break after eight consecutive hours of driving time have lapsed. Allows a break to be taken in an on-duty, not-driving status. 

Adverse Driving Conditions. Modifies the adverse driving conditions exception by extending, by two hours, the maximum on-duty window during which driving is permitted.

Sleeper Berth Exception. Allows drivers to split their required 10-hours off duty into two periods: an 8 and 2 split or a 7 and 3 split, either off duty or in the sleeper berth. Neither period counts against the drivers 14-hour driving window. 

By placing strict regulations on when truckers cannot drive, the old rules put pressure on commercial drivers - who are paid by the mile - to drive during the window that the hours of service allow regardless of traffic, weather, or fatigue. The new rules seek to improve safety for all motorists and to increase flexibility for commercial drivers by providing options. In addition, the new rules carry significant economic impact.          

Please visit our website for a full list of our Trucking and Commercial Transportation attorneys for additional questions and/or compliance with the new HOS rules.

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