Dept of Transportation to enforce commericial vehicle safety hours

Posted on May 12, 2010
The Department of Transportation has issued a new rule that is intended to crack down on drivers who violate their hours-of-service restrictions.

Hours-of-service is a federal regulation designed to prevent crashes and fatalities involving commerical vehicles by prescribing on-duty and rest periods for drivers. Some drivers and carriers, in an attempt to make more money, try to get around these restrictions.

The Department of Transportation will now require interstate commercial truck and busing companies that have serious hours-of-service violations to install electronic on-board recorders in their vehicles. Electronic on-board recorders are devices attached to commercial vehicles that automatically record the number of hours the driver has spent operating the vehicle.

Carriers found with 10% or more hours-of-service violations during a review will be required to install electronic on-board recorders for a minimum of two years. There will also be incentives for carriers who install these devices voluntarily.

The rule will go into effect June 1, 2010. The Transportation Secretary, Ray LaHood, hopes that it will help curtail practices on behalf of carriers and drivers that put other people on our nation's roads and highways at risk.