According to a study released this week by the American Transportation Research Institute, the new hours-of-service changes will cost the trucking industry $322 million more than the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration had anticipated.
ATRI is the research wing of the American Trucking Association and is known for their opposition to the new rule. The two provisions of the new rule that they studied included the requirement that two rest periods be taken each week between 1 a.m. and 5 am, and the limit to one 34-hour restart per week. ATRI reports that FMCSA’s claim that the new rules will actually benefit the industry by $133 million a year is incorrect. FMCSA’s regulatory impact analysis is based on a “biased set of driver logs from carriers undergoing compliance reviews and safety audits.” This results in skewed data toward drivers operating at the higher limits of available hours. It does not take into account “lost work hours, the limiting of driver productivity, increased congestion on roadways, increased restart times and other costs.” ATRI calculated that the new changes will actually cost the industry $189 million a year, based on what they call a “conservative measure that 15 minutes a week in productivity will be lost by the average driver.”
The changes to the hours of service rule will become effective July 1, 2013.
To see a copy of ATRI’s full report: http://atri-online.org/2013/06/17/assessing-the-impacts-of-the-34-hour-restart-provisions/
For more information about the new hours of service rule click here: http://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/rules-regulations/topics/hos/index.htm