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FMCSA's new hours-of-service rule coming soon

There's been plenty of back-and-forth over the hours-of-service rules ever since the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration released its 2005 rule that was intended to cut down on tractor trailer accidents and other types of accidents involving commercial vehicles where drivers fall asleep behind the wheel or are otherwise distracted because of long hours behind the wheel.

The 2005 rule set the 11-hour driving limit and the 34-hour restart, according to The Trucker, and ever since there have been lawsuits in opposition to the hours-of-service rules, brought by truck drivers and their employers, as well as trucking associations.

Hours-of-service rules are said to be counter-productive, creating inefficiencies in completing drivers' routes, forcing truck drivers to remain idle for long periods of time rather than simply completing their routes and then getting rest.

Safety groups, on the other hand, claim that hours-of-service rules prevent fatigued truck drivers from causing serious big rig crashes.

The new FMCSA rule is expected to set a 10-hour driving limit and modify the procedures governing the periodic restart.

Source: The Trucker, "Hours of Service rule to be issued in 30 days, says FMCSA," 11/28/11

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