Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration changes its tune

News ARTBA April 30, 2003
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The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) released its final rule for the Hours of Service of Drivers requirement

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) released its final rule for the Hours of Service of Drivers requirements for commercial motor vehicle drivers. The final regulations are a substantial departure from what the agency had proposed in April 2000, to which many industry associations strongly objected through written comments, testimony before the agency and testimony before Congress.


Based on these objections, FMCSA made major concessions by retaining certain exceptions for the construction industry, withdrawing a mandate that would have required the collection of data on independent contractors or owner-operators, eliminating burdensome mandatory break times and streamlining the regulations so they are easy to understand and enforce.


However, FMCSA also shortened the possible workday for some drivers from the current 15 hours to only 14 hours, which could adversely impact the transportation construction industry.


The new rules will take effect Jan. 3, 2004, and enforcement of the new rules will begin Jan. 4, 2004.


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