FMCSA to codifyshort-haul exemption for 30-minute break in HOS rule

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration will not apply the provision under its revised hours of service (HOS) rule requiring drivers to take a 30-minute break for every eight hours of consecutive driving on short-haul routes, and will initiate a rulemaking to include text that effect in the rule.

The enforcement clarification follows an early-August U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia decision striking down application of the 30-minute break requirement to short-haul drivers with non-commercial drivers licenses (CDL). FMCSA decided to apply the court’s decision not only to non-CDL short-haul drivers, but also to those who hold CDLs. Specifically, the following drivers will be exempt from enforcement of the break rule:

All drivers (CDL and non-CDL) that operate within 100 air-miles of their normal work reporting location and satisfy the time limitations and recordkeeping requirements of 395.1(e)(1).

Non-CDL drivers that operate within a 150 air-mile radius of the location where the driver reports for duty and satisfy the time limitations and recordkeeping requirements of 395.1(e)(2).

National Ready Mixed Concrete Association Government Affairs staff notes that a mixer truck driver can take advantage of the 100 air-mile logging exemption from the 30-minute break provision. If the driver exceeds the 12-hour reporting limit outlined in the exemption, then he or she will be required to comply with the provision. Beyond the 30-minute break language, the final HOS rule, which became effective July 1, changed the total hours a week a truck driver can work from 82 to 70 and implemented a “34-hour restart” requirement. — NRMCA, Associated Builders and Contractors