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New Federal Hours of Service Regulations for Truck Drivers

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Federal transportation legislation enacted in 2012 reduces the maximum hours of service for commercial truck drivers from 82 to 70 hours.  Drivers have an on-road limit of 60 hours over seven consecutive days or 70 hours over eight days, and after a break begins they cannot return to driving without having a minimum 10-hour off-duty period.  The drivers also have the option of taking a 34-hour rest period to restart their work week.  Although some trucking groups support the changes as a way to address driver fatigue issues, others are concerned about the impact of restart provisions on productivity and scheduling.   Some shippers are concerned about the impact of reduced driving time on trucking costs.  Agricultural loads are exempt from hours of service rules if the first stop is within a 150-mile radius of the farm. 

To obtain more information about the new rules, consult the website of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration:


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