Commercial truck drivers in Connecticut and across the U.S. are aware that the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration currently regulates service hours around a 14-hour daily clock. The agency requires all truck drivers to take a 30-minute break within the first eight hours and does not allow the 14-hour clock to stop.
The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association hasfiled a petition asking for the FMCSA to allow breaks of up to three consecutive hours in the 14-hour clock. Under the petition, the rule requiring drivers to take 10 consecutive off-duty hours before their next shift will be maintained. The OOIDA is, above all, asking for the 30-minute break rule to be abolished and for service hours to be more flexible as a way to improve highway safety. This comes at a time when the FMCSA is studying the feasibility of letting drivers split up that 14-hour duty time into "split-sleeper" options. While the consecutive 14-hour clock may be said to jeopardize drivers, it could take years before studies prompt the agency to enact changes.