The new Restart Rule could mean more hours for CDL truck drivers and more opportunities to earn money! It would change the current hours-of-service regulations (HOS) by adding a few more available hours to a trucker’s workweek. And a few more hours could mean a nice chunk of change in your pocket!
The hour-of-service regulations are in place is to keep fatigued drivers off the highways. To make sure CDL truck drivers are alert enough to drive safely, the regulations limit how long they can drive in a day and at what times. After drivers have proven time off the clock (at least 34 hours) their limit resets, or restarts.
According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), truck drivers “must follow three maximum duty limits at all times. They are the 14-hour “driving window” limit, 11-hour driving limit, and 60-hour/7-day or 70-hour/8-day duty limits.”1
Here’s what that all means:
14-Hour Driving Window: You are allowed a period of 14 consecutive hours in which to drive up to 11 hours after being off duty for 10 or more consecutive hours.
11-Hour Driving Window: Once you have driven a total of 11 hours, you have reached the driving limit and must be off duty for another 10 consecutive hours (or equivalent) before driving your truck again.
60-hour/7-day duty limits: Truck drivers are only allowed to clock in 60 driving hours within 7 days.
70-hour/8-day duty limits: Truck drivers are only allowed to clock in 70 driving hours within 8 days.
34-Hour Restart: The hours-of-service regulations allow you to “restart” your 60- or 70-hour clock calculations by taking 34 or more consecutive hours off duty (or in the sleeper berth) or some combination of both.
While the new Restart Rule is getting a lot of traction it still has a few hurdles before its enacted, including passing the full Senate.
1FMCSA, Interstate Truck Driver’s Guide to Hours of Service, March 2015