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What Changes are Being Proposed by DOT? and how you can help!

What Changes are Being Proposed by DOT?

Updated: January 3, 2011

FMCSA has proposed a number of sweeping changes to the hours of service rules for truck drivers. They include:

  • A reduction in driving time to 10 hours per shift.
  • Extending the current 34 hour restart period to include two periods from midnight to 6 a.m.
  • Limiting use of the restarts to once every 7 calendar days.
  • Mandatory rest breaks once every 7 hours
  • Limiting drivers to 13 hours of on-duty time in each 14 hour shift.

Click here for a complete summary of the proposed changes.

Click here for a table comparing the current rules to the proposed changes.


Information for Drivers: How You Can Help
DOT is proposing changes to the hours of service regulations that, if finalized, will:

  • Reduce the maximum driving time in each shift,
  • Reduce the on-duty time in each shift, and
  • Increase the number of consecutive hours of off-duty time required to restart the weekly work period.

In effect, this means that drivers will have more time away from home, stuck in rest areas. Also, for many hard working drivers these changes will ultimately result in a pay cut.How Can You Help?

The best way to be heard is to send a letter to DOT offering your unique perspective on the proposed Hours of Service changes and how you think they will impact productivity and safety. To facilitate the process we’ve provided the following tools:

  • Suggested Talking Points
  • Easy To Use Letter Templates
  • DOT’s Mailing Address

Tell DOT What You Think
Remember, DOT is required to read and consider every unique letter, so don’t hesitate to write. Also, encourage other drivers to do so. For instructions, click here (PDF) or here (Word).

Send Your Letter Electronically
Don’t want to go to the trouble of mailing a letter? You can also send one electronically. For instructions, click here.

Use One of Our Form Letters
As an alternative to drafting your own letter, you could choose to sign one of our form letters provided  here (MS Word version). However, DOT is not required to read and consider each form letter, so this approach will be less powerful and is not preferred.

Send Your Thoughts Electronically
If so inclined, you could simply send a DOT a few thoughts electronically. To do so, follow these instructions.

Speak Up!
Clearly, DOT doesn’t understand the impact these changes will have on this industry and the professionals who drive for a living. If only a fraction of the nation’s four million truck drivers send letters, DOT is bound to get the message.

  1. January 9, 2011 at 12:50 am


    Instructions for Electronic Filing
    Step 1. Go to: http://www.regulations.gov/#!home
    Step 2. Click on “Submit a comment”
    Step 3. In the dialogue box for “Enter Keyword or ID” enter: FMCSA-2004-19608
    Step 4. Click on “search”
    Step 5. In the far right hand column of the search results click “submit a comment”
    Step 6. Enter your name and address.
    Step 7. Either type a short remark in the space provided, or upload a file (letter)
    by doing the following:
    􀂃 Click “browse” and search for the appropriate file on your computer.
    􀂃 Once you have found and selected the correct file, click “attach.”
    􀂃 Once the file has been successfully attached, click “submit.”
    If you encounter problems with the system, you may contact the regulations.gov
    helpdesk by:
    – Email at: http://www.regulations.gov/#!contactUs or
    – Phone at 1-877-378-5457 (toll free) or (703) 412-3083
    The helpdesk is open weekdays between 8 am and 6 pm, Eastern Time.

  1. January 7, 2011 at 10:44 pm

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