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Final Hours-of-Service Rule Released by FMCSA

According to the National Stone, Sand and Gravel Association (NSSGA), the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) released its final Hours-of-Service (HOS) rule for the trucking industry.

FMCSA’s HOS rule establishes the standards and perimeters by which drivers must adhere to regarding their driving schedules. The final rule will significantly modernize HOS standards with a focus on driver flexibility, which will improve safety within the trucking industry. NSSGA, along with many in the trucking industry, are greatly appreciative of the final changes and the improved efficiencies this rule will provide.

The final rule will include many new provisions, including these three main items that were initially included in the proposed rule:

  • The on-duty limits for short-haul operations will increase from 12 to 14 hours and from 100 air-miles to 150.
  • The adverse driving provision would extend the driving window two hours if the driver encounters adverse driving conditions.
  • The 30-minute break provision would be modified to require the break after eight hours of driving time (instead of on-duty time) and allows an on-duty/not driving period to qualify as the required break.

NSSGA worked closely with FMCSA throughout this entire process, providing oral and written comments for the proposed rule and notice of proposed rule before FMCSA officials outlining trucking operations within the industry and how proposed the changes would improve operations. 

Further, NSSGA worked on an exemption request from the HOS rule for the construction industry, as the industry consists of a patchwork of HOS exemptions and modifications depending on the truck in operation and the materials carried. While this request was ultimately not incorporated, NSSGA is working with Congressional partners for industry HOS relief in a future highway reauthorization bill.