There may be a change in store for truck drivers’ maximum drive time. Right now, the federal regulations allow drivers to have only a certain number of working hours. Not following these regulations can result in a driver being declared “out of service” for a day or even longer; which of course is an inconvenience for their company but also money out of their pocket 1. These regulations can potentially keep drivers from their destination and families, even by just five minutes. They have to pull over and park for the required ten hours before they can drive again 1. Drivers are now looking for flexibility in the regulations so that the 5 minutes won’t affect them as much and can make it to their destination.
Last week, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) announced that the agency was in the process of creating a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) which would bring about major changes to Hours-of-Service regulations for truck drivers. While exact changes that the agency is looking to reform have not yet been made available, greater flexibility for on and off-duty time was one of the initiatives FMCSA Administrator Ray Martinez hinted at during a speech he made at the Omnitracs User Conference in Dallas. (1) A NPRM was expected to publish this month but the partial government shutdown may cause a delay.