OOIDA Leads Charge to Reform Hours of Service
(February 21, 2018)
- Countering a trend of increasing rigidness in regulations that subsequently are not improving the crash rates on the highways, the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association filed a petition calling for a reform of the hours-of-service regulations.
OOIDA submitted the formal petition on Tuesday, Feb. 13, with U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao and Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration Deputy Administrator Cathy Gautreaux.
“Trucking is heavily regulated, and many of the regulations are strictly enforced. Yet, highway safety is getting worse, not better. Perhaps it’s time for a new approach, one that involves more input from truckers with millions of miles of safe driving experience and less input from those with little to no experience behind the wheel of a truck,” the petition states.
That new approach, driven by the calls of actual truck drivers and not so-called safety groups or mega fleet special interest groups, must start with the hours-of-service regulations.
“Over the years, DOT has significantly changed the HOS regulations. The current regulations are overly complex, provide no flexibility, and in no way reflect the physical capabilities or limitations of individual drivers,” the petition states.
“They force drivers to be on the road when they are tired or fatigued, during busy travel times and adverse weather and road conditions, or when they simply aren’t feeling well. In short, the current HOS regulations force truckers to comply with a regulatory framework that jeopardizes their safety and the safety of the traveling public.”
OOIDA’s petition targets the 14-hour on-duty clock and the 30-minute rest break.