Long-Awaited Study on HOS Restart Comes Under Fire

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) recently released its long-awaited field study on the 34-hour restart provision of the Hours-of-Service rule.

The study, which was mandated in the last highway bill and issued nearly 6 months late, found that the current rule for truck drivers is more effective at combating fatigue than the prior version. The provision requires drivers to take off two periods between 1 a.m. and 5 a.m. during their 34-hour restart.

The American Trucking Associations (ATA) was quick to criticize the report, saying that in many respects it is lacking in critical analyses on several important issues.

Transportation and Infrastructure Committee member Richard Hanna (R-N.Y.) called the study “worthless” and “half-baked.” “I expected a robust report, but the study is worthless,” he said. “This half-baked study only underscores the need to legislatively delay the rule and have GAO conduct an independent analysis of the study so we can get a credible account of what this rule will truly mean for the safety of truckers, commuters and businesses.”

Rep. Hanna was part of a group of lawmakers that had been pressing FMCSA to complete the study by last September.

The study was due before the HOS rule became final on July 1.

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