Long Awaited HOS Changes

The FMCSA released the HOS Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM). The proposal is designed to increase safety and not increase driving time. The FMCSA believes these changes will save an estimated $274 million for the U.S. economy and American consumers.

Based on public comments the FMCSA proposed to revise the following rules:

  1. 30-Minute Rest Break
    • Required after 8 hours of driving time. Previously was 8 hours on duty.
    • The break will be allowed while on-duty, not driving. Previously had to be off-duty.
  2. Split Sleeper Berth
    • 7/3 hour splits are permissible. Previously drivers were required to split 10 hours off duty into two periods. 
    • NPRM requests research on further splits
  3. Adverse Driving Conditions
    • On-duty time can be extended to accommodate 2 additional hours of driving during adverse conditions. 
  4. Short-Haul Drivers 
    • Short haul CDL drivers can now operate within 150 air-mile radius and up to 14 hours. Previously 100 air-mile radius and 12 hours. 
  5. 14 Hour Clock 
    • Drivers will be allowed to “pause” their 14 hour on-duty clock once, for up to 3 hours during their duty day. 

The FMCSA is currently seeking public feedback on the proposed revisions. If you’d like to leave a comment, click here

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Surprise Inspection Blitz Placed 1,600 Trucks Out of Service

On May 15, an unannounced break-focused inspection blitz placed over 1,600 trucks out of service in the U.S and Canada, in a single day. The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) announced that the commercial vehicle inspectors conducted more than 10,358 inspections which placed 1,667 (16.1%) of those vehicles out of service. 

Inspectors paid close attention to break hoses/tubing. According to the CVSA, 996 trucks were issued violations for chafed rubber hoses, 185 trucks were issued violations for chafed thermoplastic hoses. Totalling, 1,125 violations for chafed rubber hoses and 124 violations for damaged thermoplastic hoses. 

CVSA President Chief Jay Thompson stated to the Arkansas Highway Police, “Brake hoses and tubing must be properly attached, undamaged, without leaks and appropriately flexible,” Thompson concluded, “because they are such an important part of the braking system, the failure of hoses or tubing can cause problems for the entire braking system.” 

Top five brake-related violations are:

  • Clamp or roto type brake out of adjustment
  • CMV manufactured after Oct. 19, 1994, has an automatic brake adjustment system that fails to compensate for wear 
  • Brake hose or tubing chafing and/or kinking 
  • No or defective ABS malfunction indicator lamp for trailer manufactured after March 1, 1998 
  • Inoperative/defective brakes

The CVSA will have another brake-focused inspection blitz next month, scheduled for September 15-21.

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How Much Time Do Truckers Waste At Loading Docks? The FMCSA Wants To Know

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is seeking public feedback on driver detention times at loading docks to better understand how it impacts safety on the road.

In a 2011 study conducted by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) which recommended the, “ FMCSA examine the extent to which detention time contributes to hours of service violations in its future studies on driver fatigue and detention time.’’ In response to the GAO report, the FMCSA sponsored a study later conducted that estimated the average detention time a driver spends loading and unloading is, “10 percent of their stops for an average duration of 1.4 hours beyond a commonly accepted two-hour loading and unloading period”. However, the study failed to calculate what normal loading and unloading times should be.

The DOT study hypothesizes that not only does detention time increase fatigue, but may also contribute to dangerous driving behaviors and increased frustration.

The FMCSA is seeking comments on the following questions:

  • Are data currently available that can accurately record loading, unloading, and delay times?
  • Is there technology available that could record and delineate prompt loading and unloading times versus the extended delays sometimes experienced by drivers?
  • How can delay times be captured and recorded in a systematic, comparable manner?
  • Could systematic collection and publication of loading, unloading, and delay times be useful in driver or carrier business decisions and help to reduce loading, unloading, and delay times?
  • What should FMCSA use as an estimate of reasonable loading/unloading time? Please provide a basis for your response.
  • How do contract arrangements between carriers and shippers address acceptable wait times? Do these arrangements include penalties for delays attributable to a carrier or shipper?
  • What actions by FMCSA, within its current statutory authority, would help to reduce loading, unloading, and delay times?

Ezlogz offers geofencing, a feature which allows the admin to set up a barrier to track how long a driver is at a location, which will then notify the admin when they leave the geofenced area. Many of our customers like to use this feature at loading docks. Geofencing is an essential feature every fleet should have to track which loading docks effect your drivers available driving and on-duty time.

The FMCSA stated they need more information on trucker detention time at shippers and receivers in order to understand how those delays impact highway safety. The FMCSA is requesting feedback, there is a 90-day comment period ending on September 9, 2019. If you’d like to leave a comment please follow all guidelines listed here

Source: https://www.govinfo.gov/content/pkg/FR-2019-06-10/pdf/2019-12167.pdf

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Reminder: New Hours of Service Releasing Today, June 7

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) U.S Department of Services (DOT) is scheduled to release new flexible hours of service. They began revising the HOS in August 2018, and opened the proposed rule making for public comment and feedback.

The FMCSA asked for comments on the following:

  • Expanding the current 100 air-mile “short-haul” exemption from 12 hours on-duty to 14 hours on-duty, in order to be consistent with the rules for long-haul truck drivers;
  • Extending the current 14-hour on-duty limitation by up to two hours when a truck driver encounters adverse driving conditions;
  • Revising the current mandatory 30-minute break for truck drivers after 8-hours of continuous driving; and
  • Reinstating the option for splitting up the required 10-hour off-duty rest break for drivers operating trucks that are equipped with a sleeper-berth compartment.

The new HOS regulations are scheduled to be released today, June 7th, however the DOT can change the date. Following the release of the revised HOS, there will be a 49-day comment period allowing the public to give valuable feedback. The comment period will end on July 26. Based on the feedback, the agency will determine to either revise the rules or proceed with the final rule.

For a more in depth article please see our post https://ezlogzblog.com/2019/05/02/new-flexible-hours-of-service-set-for-next-month/

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Driving School Nightmare: Hundreds of Truck Drivers Could Lose Their CDL

Hundreds of truck drivers recently received letters from state officials ordering them to retake their driving tests or risk getting their CDL revoked, and as a result they could possibly lose their jobs.

Roughly 280 drivers who took their CDL test at the Carolina Truck Driving School that was located in Charlotte, North Carolina, were ordered by the NC Division of Motor Vehicles to retake the CDL test. Some drivers only had a couple days to retake the test, and other drivers had a few weeks.

The Carolina Truck Driving School closed down in November 2018, which only had three employees, all of which were official testers. According to the owner he closed the driving school because it wasn’t making enough profit. However, the school also has another location in Tennessee.

All estimated 280 drivers that received a notice will need to retake the CDL test because state officials discovered the school failed to comply with the state and federal guidelines. It was also exposed that the school is missing 450 records. The owner of the school said it was one of his three employees who stole the records, but he’s unsure which employee it was.

Trying to make amends, the owner of the school is offering those affected to use a truck and trailer he will provide at the DMV in Statesville and Rock Hill in the middle of June for anyone to use to retake the test.

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2019 Inspection Blitz: What to Expect

The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) announced that the 2019 International Roadcheck will begin on June 4th and end June 6th. The inspection will be taking place throughout all of North America. During the 72-hour blitz, CMV inspectors will be inspecting both the commercial motor vehicles and the driver.

Most drivers who are inspected will receive the full 37 point North American Standard Level I Inspection. Every year the International Roadcheck focuses on a specific category of violations, this year they’re focusing on steering and suspension systems. According to the CVSA, inspectors may also conduct, “Level II Walk-Around Driver/Vehicle Inspection, Level III Driver/Credential/Administrative Inspection or Level V Vehicle-Only Inspection.” If no violations are found during the inspection a CVSA decal will be applied to the vehicle. The decal indicates the vehicle passed the inspection from a CVSA certified inspector. On the contrary, if there are violations present the CVSA certified inspector may issue the vehicle out of service. The vehicle cannot resume operating until the violations are corrected, the same goes for a driver who is issued out of service.

The International Roadcheck is the biggest enforcement program on CMV’s in the world. The CVSA states that, “around 17 trucks and buses inspected, on average, every minute in Canada, the United States and Mexico during a 72-hour period.” This means during the inspection blitz that roughly 24,480 CMV’s are inspected every 24-hours.

Source: https://cvsa.org/news-entry/2019-roadcheck-dates-focus/

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