The FMCSA’s regulations on Hours of Service is one of our most read blog posts. Written just before the new regulations came out in July 2013, It averages 100 page views per month and is by far the blog post that is commented on most. Our own data echoes the American Transportation Research Institutes (ARTI) list of the top ten critical issues facing the North America Trucking Industry, where HOS made the number one spot on their list.

Reasons as to why HOS has continued to be top of mind and top of concern for the trucking industry are the potential for impact on operations, driver productivity, overall capacity, and the overall financial implications of the ruling.

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*ARTI Graphic

Our blog post was written with the objective of being a clear & simple go-to source of the new HOS regulations. Many of the comments we received on the post were from drivers asking HOS questions related to their own experiences on the road. Below, the most recent questions asked, and our replies:

Driver Q: If I drive 5 or 6 hours I can sleep 5 hours in the truck and then drive another 5 hours .. or when you go to sleep you are binding me 8 or 10 hours.

UWT A: HOS regulations state that you must take at least a 30 minute break after driving for 8 hours. So yes, you technically could sleep for 5 hours after driving for 6 as that meets this requirment. But, if you would only be able to drive for another 5 hours after sleeping, before you would reach your daily on-duty driving limit of 11 hours. At this time you would have available 3 hours on on-duty NOT driving time, before you would have reached your 14 hour on-duty limit. You would then be required to take 10 consecutive hours off-duty before being allowed to go on-duty again. The key is to be counting the total daily limits of on-duty time. Once the 14 hour on-duty limit is reached, you must take 10 consecutive hours off.

Driver Q: I only have a few questions, for example I have 46 hours in service, I drive from California to New York arriving at 4:30 on a Sunday, I leave New York on Tuesday at 9:00 am, can I reestablish my 70 hours?, otherwise I wouldn’t feel comfortable going back from New York to California and I wouldn’t want to make my client wait two days more for his load.

UWT A: If your question relates to the restart, it looks as if you would be able to restart your 70 hour work week based on the info provided. Note that as of July 2013, the HOS restart provision’s 34 hours must include 2 periods between 1am and 5am. Here is the breakdown to show your compliance:

  • 4:30am Sunday – 9am Tuesday = 52.5 hours off-duty (off-duty time must be consecutive and, off-duty means any time not spent on-duty, driving, or in the sleeper-berth).
  • The times you gave include 2 periods between 1am and 5am (1am to 5am Monday & 1am to 5am Tuesday).

So, according to the info provided you can restart your 70 hours on duty because you have had more than 34 consecutive hours off-duty.

Note that this is based on home terminal time (the time it is where you operate your business out of, i.e. California), and may only be used once per week (168 hours), which is measured from the beginning of the previous restart.

Driver Q: If I haven’t worked for two months and I restart work on a Friday, how should I record this on the log?, how many off duty pages should I register?, I mean if it is a Friday October the 3rd should I register two off duty pages or should I start counting from Monday.

UWT A: For the log book, the FMCSA requires that you retain a copy of each record of duty status for the previous 7 consecutive days which shall be in your possession and available for inspection while on duty . So if you are starting work again on the Friday, you must record your time for the past 7 consecutive days as “off duty” and have it available upon inspection. If you start work on Friday, October 3rd,  this is your first “on-duty” day in your log.  Think of your work week as courting hours. It doesn’t matter what day of the week it starts, just the amount of hours you count.  Remember a work week is 60 hours in 7 consecutive days or 70 hours in 8 consecutive days. After that much time, you must do a restart for 34 hours that must include 2 periods between 1am and 5am.

Do you have any questions or direct examples for us? Leave a comment or contact our marketing department today at 604.982.1493; marketing@uwtransportation.com.

HOS: Our Most Popular Blog Post, with FAQ was last modified: by