Q

Do all truck drivers have to comply with hours-of-service requirements established by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration?

A

In short, the answer is no. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), which is part of the United States Department of Transportation, only regulates driver hours for a commercial motor vehicle (CMV) that is involved in interstate commerce and meets certain weight and cargo specifications. So, how do you know if a truck is a CMV?

Is the Truck Engaged in Interstate Commerce?

A truck that is involved in interstate commerce, which means it transports raw materials, products, or other goods to or from another state or country, may be a CMV if it meets additional weight and cargo specifications. A vehicle that transports cargo within a single state is not engaged in interstate commerce and, as such, is not a CMV.

Does the Truck Meet Weight or Cargo Specifications?

A vehicle that engages in interstate commerce and meets one of the following descriptions is a CMV:

  • Weighs over 10,000 pounds, including the cargo.
  • Transports hazardous materials in a quantity that requires a placard, or safety permit.

CMV Drivers Must Comply With Hours-of-Service Rules

CMV Drivers are required to track their hours in a daily logbook, called the “record of duty status” and must comply with the FMCSA hours-of-service rules at all times. These rules include the following:

  • Drivers can drive for 11 consecutive hours per day and be on duty for 14 consecutive hours. After that, they must rest for 10 hours before they can go back on duty.
  • Drivers are limited to 60 hours on duty in a 7-day period and 70 hours in an 8-day period. Once they hit these limits, they must rest for 34 hours over two consecutive days.

If you were seriously injured in a truck accident caused by the negligent actions of a trucker, you need an experienced attorney to investigate the crash, obtain critical evidence, negotiate with the insurance company, and take your case to trial if necessary.  Contact our office today to schedule a free case evaluation and be sure to check out our truck accident blog to learn more about obtaining compensation for your accident.