Hours restart looming July 1

| May 19, 2013

hours night truck stopBarring a D.C. Court of Appeals ruling throwing out or requiring further agency work on the hours of service final rule announced back in December 2011 in the next month and a half, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s revisions take final effect July 1.

With that compliance deadline looming, many owner-operators and drivers in May were looking hard at how the new restart restrictions and mandated break period during drive time might affect their operations. Many were looking at a schedule change on regular runs given the new requirement that every restart must include two 1-5 a.m. periods.

In recent polling on the hours change, drivers were clearly worried about new limits on the 34-hour restart, a provision originally codified during the 2003 changes to drivers’ hours of service. Todd McCann, writing on his AboutTruckDriving.com blog in April, detailed the recent examples of three successive weekends, two of whose outcomes would not have been possible under the new restart restrictions.

In recent polling on the hours change, drivers were clearly worried about new limits on the 34-hour restart, a provision originally codified during the 2003 changes to drivers’ hours of service. Todd McCann, writing on his AboutTruckDriving.com blog in April, detailed the recent examples of three successive weekends, two of whose outcomes would not have been possible under the new restart restrictions.

“The 34-hour restart will affect me the most,” wrote Greg Vellender, responding to hours queries on Overdrive’s Facebook page. “I will be going off-duty at 11 p.m.” before his typical hours reset rather than running farther through the night to take advantage of reduced late-night traffic.

Mike Hansen reported his normal weekly post-restart start time at 2 a.m. is likely to have to be moved up to 5 a.m., given restart restrictions. His carrier planned on beginning logging under the new rules June 1.

Part of the problem with the restart restrictions, too, has to do with the new stipulation limiting a driver to just one restart a week. “Having to wait for a reset for 7 days will get me the most,” noted Keith Johnson.

But for drivers not maximizing their 60/70 available hours in a seven-/eight-day period, wrote John Solliday, working off of the recap and including a bigger dose of forward-thinking time management is an easy way out of most hours situations under the new regs. “It goes back to the old school” way of thinking, Solliday said. “Manage your time… Run your recap and don’t run out all your hours every day. When you go home for a weekend or the three-four days for those who just have to be there, there’s your 34-hour reset.”

Use “common sense,” Solliday said. “Watch your hours. If you do, you won’t run out, maybe get low a time or two but you’ll still have hours and will still be able to move.”

Eric Whaley echoed that sentiment. “It won’t bother me. I run on the recap, barely need a 34, so it won’t change my operation one bit.” Drivers that have problems with the new rules, Whaley went on to suggest, may “work for an outfit where they don’t control the loads they run or how they run.”

The mandatory 30-minute break at least every eight hours of driving, too, saw similar reactions, with some drivers calling it no more than a formality, given they already take such breaks, to broader concerns about proper management of it. It’s possible, given the 14-hour window, to log the break too early and, after eight hours of driving, have to log another before the day’s over and lose a full hour of daily drive time.

Following find further commentary:

John Solliday: No change for me, but then I’ve always taken an afternoon nap for at least an hour or so.

Dave Lippert: I’m sticking to the current rules. They aren’t broke, and I take breaks when I darn well please. I get my restart every weekend so nothing is changing for me there.

Shaun Gaffga: I have been logging it like it’s the law right now.

Mark Pritchard: Anyone seen auto parts delivery? Restaurant service? Small retail chains? Most of those get delivery trucks in the dead of night. Then there are those little operations like FedEx, UPS, ABF, YRC. They clear the gate at 6 p.m. and run the night. A lot of work gets done while the solar-powered tourists in the truck stop suck down their 64-oz. colas.

Tracey Volk: The folks that I see speeding, texting, passing unsafely, running through stop signs, no signaling, etc., are not usually driving a semi. How often do passenger vehicles take breaks when driving great distances wearing adult diapers?

Graham Brett MacMurphy: None of it. Will be staying in Canada. I’m done with the U.S. stupidly changing the rules every couple of years. Our rules up here make more sense.

Ben Wilson: Can we play on the swings? Can we? I wanna seesaw!… How about DOT giving us the time to do our jobs. Let the individual decide when he or she is tired based on that person’s needs enforce common-sense regulations.

  • http://www.facebook.com/william.mckelvie William McKelvie

    Yeah more of the typical it won’t affect me or adapt nonsense, why am I not surprised. When the final destination producer or seller does not get their product on time, then maybe those who preach that will wake up? Owners must deliver on time, if not the shipper and broker get mad. That means they may never load your truck again, very possibly search and find a larger company that can just drop and hook, and leave owners sitting high and dry. Good luck to all of those who think that this will not affect the end consumer. For every change in trucking, it hits the consumer in the end at the register. So that means it hits us too. Come on guys and gals, if it hurts ONE SECTOR of our industry, it hurts all of us. This selfish attitude of only you and your little operation is all that counts, is not a truck driver attitude. Well let me correct myself, not an old hand attitude, but a new world attitude. And we can surely see where that attitude has taken our country as well as our industry.

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  • martymarsh

    Very well said, and if anyone don’t think that regulating rest is nothing more than a money making scam they are in on it. The more rules you make, they bigger the chance of catching someone breaking one which produces the dollar.
    We are the only industry where they tell you when it’s time to go to bed.
    It’s really simple math, the harder they make it the more money they get.

  • No Reform

    So we are supposed to stop the Run and have a Picnic?
    We sit and stare out the window for 30minutes? How ignorant…why dont the feds find something useful to do besides writing ignorant “RULES” for children to follow?

  • No Reform

    Sure..the ZOMBIES are not effected..company drivers for mega Fleets just follow orders and take home $350 per week after food and Taxes…..Only Owners are affected by this.

  • No Reform

    What if you fall behind in traffic..are you STILL supposed to stop for “THE PICNIC”???? We have to deliver at a set time…do I tell the receiver Im having a Ham Sandwhich..per Gov. Mandate??

  • No Reform

    Sometimes we have to MAKE UP for lost time brought on by weather and traffic…NOW we need to STOP the truck?
    We need to take aSnooze??? That should go over well with the customers…Im Snoozing…be there when I get there?
    What if ya Snooze and THEN run into Traffic?? Going to be Late for sure…

  • cjmarley

    I don’t know how you can say only owners are affected. Company drivers get paid by the mile. So that 30 minute picnic is 30 minutes of lost miles. Not something I look forward to. I don’t need 30 minutes. I stop every couple of hours to stretch for about 10 minutes anyway. So now I have to add another 30 minutes to that. You know what they say: If the wheels ain’t turning, the truck ain’t earning. And that holds true regardless if you are o/o or company. The only ones it doesn’t affect are those who are paid by the hour.

  • larry

    I don’t know why you put grafts up like that if I was ann ferro I would see that and ask for a pay rase that tells ann she has done a good job

  • Gambler

    When you have morons making the rules, this is what you get!

  • campbear

    This Obama gov’t has screwed up everything….I’m sick of people who know nothin’, trying to change everything…
    Time to go back to the old rules, and insulate the trucking industry from them dirty railroad special interests.

  • judy

    It won’t affect us, however, I don’t like being told when I can sleep, take a break, etc. I think ALL of these hour of service rule makers should ride along with a driver for one month and see how the real world works and why they should allow drivers to determine to stop and take a nap when traffic is horrific and drive a little later, etc, etc. Maybe they should put restrictons on 4 wheelers hours of driving, drive time to/from work, work hours, reading books, putting on makeup, texting, masterbating, cutting off the big trucks just to make an exit, motorhomes pulling trailers, etc.
    Motorhomes/toterhomes, 4×4 trucks should all have to have a special permit on their license to pull trailers and go through the scales to see if their rigs are up to par!!!!!! There you go, that would create revenue, right?

  • driver

    12 on, 12 off. no restarts, no 60/70 rule. try that out! plenty of rest means no need for a restart. complicated rules only give big brother another reason to write a ticket.

  • htown trucker

    I will work from 6 am to 6 pm period. The shippers and receivers will just have to get with the program and the people who depend on the products I deliver will just have to wait a little longer to get their stuff.

  • htown trucker

    thats exactly what you tell walmart and kroger. you were forced to shut down by the government. if that nazi bitch anna ferro wont listen to us, maybe she will listen to them.

  • MarsRiver

    We’ve allowed special interest groups to control the “goings on” within our industry and have not taken efficient or effective action against it. As I stated in an earlier post to Mr. Korn in another article “We’ve lost our voice of authority”…and need to take it back. All this meddling isn’t making it safer. It occurred to me that all the people who “don’t care for trucks and their drivers” will now have to contend with more of them at rush hour on Mondays. Just a thought Dallas, Detroit, Chicago, Atlanta. Jersey and L.A. don’t count since they are screwed up all day everyday. Have a safe week!

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  • Slowpoke

    Big brother knows best and we follow like sheep…..when will we wake up and start voting these clowns out of office…contact your legislators and make noise! They work for us!!

  • freightliner280

    this is way I look at it with the new hours of service.we all should just get together and do the right thing and tell the usa to stick it up there ass and leave the military to deliver there food to the shippers and who ever eles. the way I feel is that the government is just one big joke and we need to vote them out what a bunck of ass holes.

  • bryan

    that new law gone be not for the good for anyone they fixen it were u cant do any thing that’s bull shit an its all Obama falt

  • Dave Nichols

    I used to think all this log book crap was a pain but these days i figure if i cant make a living in 70 or less hours a week, maybe a different line of work is in order??

  • Dave Nichols


  • hillbilly bone

    One restart a week makes no sense what-so-ever. If I stay out Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, getting home wednesday afternoon and stay home or off 34 hours, you saying I’m not safe to leave Friday regradless? This is nothing but a bunch of bull**** that is just gonna put more drivers in more unsafe conditions, more stress, and cause more hardships, causing more unsafe conditions than causing safer conditions. Obviously, you would have to write a book for these stupid, ignorant people that has come up with this crap for them to understand the most simpliest things about trucking that they do not understand. They do not care about owner-operators. All these cookie cutter truck drivers making comments about how its not going to bother them with their little cut and dried situations, don’t care about nobody but themselves. And saying that if you can’t manage this new re-start you probably with the wrong company is total BS! There are still real truck drivers that enjoy trucking and running how they dam well please as long as they stay within the current guide lines. It ain’t always about managing your business for the dam goverment and that does not mean you are not safe or do not strive to be safe. But all this crap IS NOT GOING TO MAKE ONE BIT OF DIFFERENCE SAFETY WISE. JUST MORE AND MORE BS and if we do not step in as drivers and put a stop to this crap they pull on us for their own “kicks” it’s never going to stop. So since the truckers won’t do nothing or haven’t, maybe the goverment will hang theirself to the point with all this non-sense as to when more jobs in America became available besides these shitty truck driving jobs (that people “HATE” to start with) people will stop driving trucks and they can’t enough “people” or drivers to take their harrassment. I hope I’m still alive when that day comes. Then watch them run backwards by putting anything and anybody in a truck that can’t even speak english that is used to being treated like imcompetent peasants. If you are not physically able to drive a truck anywhere after any type 34 hour restart then you are physically handy cappied to start with and the problem causing that should have neen recognized in your DOT PHYSICAL. My God leave us ALONE! SOMEBODY HELP US!!!!

  • Tony Hippensteel

    I am fed up…..Everyday I am running up against the clock. I am constantly doing stupid reckless things just to stay in compliance….Is this really safer?

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