Fleet Management

House Panel Sets Hours-of-Service Hearing

November 14, 2013

By Oliver Patton

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A House subcommittee will hold a hearing on the truck driver hours-of-service rule next week.

The Subcommittee on Contracting and Workforce of the Small Business Committee will question Anne Ferro, chief of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, on the rule.

Also scheduled to testify at the Nov. 21 hearing are Tilden Curl Jr. of Tecco Trucking on behalf of the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association, Brian Evans, president of L&L Freight Services, and Paul Jovanis, engineering professor at the Larson Transportation Institute of Pennsylvania State University.

The panel is chaired by Rep. Richard Hanna, R-N.Y., who said in a notice that he intends to examine the efficacy of the rule and its impact on small business.

Hanna recently introduced a bill that would suspend the 34-hour restart provision of the hours-of-service rule, pending an assessment by the Government Accountability Office.

The bill may get through the House but is unlikely to pass the Senate, say Hill staff who closely follow the issue.

Hanna says the restart provision is “arbitrary and capricious” because the safety agency has not yet completed a study of its effectiveness.

The study, which Congress ordered in last year’s highway bill, still is being reviewed at FMCSA.

In September, Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx told Hanna that the agency is “working as expeditiously as possible” and will release the study when it has finished its analysis and review of the data.

The agency’s findings will have to be reviewed by the DOT Secretary’s office and the White House Office of Management and Budget, a process that could take into next year.

The agency defends the restart requirement, saying that it does not unduly restrict business and does improve safety.

“FMCSA believes that the (rule is) clearly supported by the evidence on the risk of fatigue and fatigue-related crashes associated with long daily and weekly hours, on the loss of sleep associated with long work hours, and the health effects associated with sleep loss,” the agency said when it published the rule.





  1. 1. Joe [ November 15, 2013 @ 08:51AM ]

    Well this will be a nice piece of political theatre. The Subcommittee has zero oversight authority over FMCSA. Sure Hanna has run a bill – but what are the chances of passage in the Democrat controlled Senate if a Republican House were to approve it? Just another inconsequential hearing designed to “gin folks up.”

  2. 2. Edward j.kozel [ November 16, 2013 @ 09:19AM ]

    Some Lady Has not ever Been in a truck is Going to tell you how Many hrs.you Can Drive a truck when they Never worked a day in there life.Sitting on there you know what..Maybe they want driver to sleep for 6 Hrs & work 4 Hrs.Thats the way gov.works God help Us All.

  3. 3. phil Mulder [ November 17, 2013 @ 09:54AM ]

    Not everyone requires the same amount of rest. We will all rest when we need it.

  4. 4. Lee Leonard [ November 17, 2013 @ 07:06PM ]

    The new 7/1/13 HOS rules increased fatigue, wasted time, created multiple unsafe conditions for truckers and the public. THIS REVISION TOTALLY WAS NOT NEEDED IN THE TRUCKING INDUSTRY. Try setting beside the road for 30 min watching the moon or mass noise from traffic on the interstate and add to that a situation where the truck is not allowed to idle. Burn up miserably in Summer, freeze in the Winter. With EOBC forced to stop wherever for 30 min. One hour down road might have had a place to park, go to restroom or get something to eat. The forced 30min can make a shift miserable. Nothing screws up the body bio systems more than having to take extra nights off to accommodate the 1-5 stupid mandate that really hurts those that begin work 11AM to 11 PM. Add to that a loss of $15 - 20,000 per year because of the restrictions......

  5. 5. john [ November 18, 2013 @ 06:38AM ]

    Two 1am-5am periods for a 34 hour restart is ridiculous! 34 hours is 34 hours, regardless of what the clock says. And since their goal is apparently to get us off the road, then why limit it to one restart every 168 hours?
    Mandatory 30 minute break. A classic example of governmental BS, making rules just for the sake of making rules.

  6. 6. BarbRRB [ November 18, 2013 @ 07:57AM ]

    Recap.... works for me, Years ago that is all we did.
    The 30 min break..... I do take time to eat, use facilities, check my load...... easy to do in 30 min. Does every one drive for more than 8 hours, no potty brakes, or eating? My biggest gripe when I'm on the road is parking!! Parking is a BIG problem! There is so many signs for no parking. How can we safely park for 10 hours safely, yes safely and along side the ramp at rest areas is NOT safe. I see it all the time at 5 am. no parking and trucks parked everywhere near highways. LET THE DRIVER make their decision when they are tired, when they eat, this one size fits all is NOT working.

  7. 7. John [ November 18, 2013 @ 08:34PM ]

    Just another dog and pony show by the "geniouses in DC!! The repuckians introduced the bill, so the dumacraps WILL vote against it!! Had the dumacraps introduced the measure, the repuckians would've rejected it.

  8. 8. Jesus [ December 01, 2013 @ 11:03AM ]

    Simply, it's clear that somebody wants to justify the job by doing nosense provitions......34hrs or 60 hrs recap?. Give me a freaking break


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