September 5, 2018 2:15 PM, EDT

FMCSA to Hold Listening Session on Proposed HOS Changes

Sleeper berthFMCSA is seeking comment on the split sleeper-berth rule to allow drivers to split their required time in the sleeper berth. (Lippert Components Inc.)

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has planned a public listening session this month to discuss several proposed changes to the commercial motor vehicle driver hours-of-service regulations.

FMCSA’s Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on Aug. 23 sought comment on four specific aspects of the HOS rules the agency is considering changing. They are: the shorthaul HOS limit, the HOS exception for adverse driving conditions, the 30-minute rest break provision and the split sleeper-berth rule to allow drivers to split their required time in the sleeper berth.

The listening session, scheduled for Sept. 14 at 1 p.m. EDT, is expected to convene at the U.S. Department of Transportation in Washington. It also will be streamed online, the agency announced Sept. 5.

Vendors of electronic logging devices are encouraged to participate to address potential implementation issues should changes to the HOS rules be made, the agency said.

Hours-of-Service Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking by Transport Topics on Scribd

In its proposal, FMCSA said it is seeking answers from stakeholders to 25 specific questions in four general areas:

• Should the agency expand the current 100 air-mile “shorthaul” exemption from 12 hours on-duty to 14 hours on-duty, to be consistent with the workday rules for longhaul truck drivers?

• Is there adequate flexibility in the adverse driving exception that currently expands driving time by up to two hours?

• If the 30-minute rest break after eight hours of driving did not exist, would drivers obtain adequate rest breaks throughout a daily driving period to relieve fatigue?

• Do you have information that would support reinstating the option for splitting up the required 10-hour off-duty rest break for drivers operating trucks with sleeper-berth compartments?