“Hours of service” refers to the maximum amount of time drivers are permitted to be on duty including driving time, and specifies number and length of rest periods, to help ensure that drivers stay awake and alert. In general, all carriers and drivers operating commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) must comply with HOS regulations found in 49 CFR 395.
View a Summary of the HOS Regulations for property- and passenger-carrying drivers:
11-Hour Driving Limit
May drive a maximum of 11 hours after 10 consecutive hours off duty.
May not drive beyond the 14th consecutive hour after coming on duty, following 10 consecutive hours off duty. Off-duty time does not extend the 14-hour period.
30-Minute Driving Break
Drivers must take a 30-minute break when they have driven for a period of 8 cumulative hours without at least a 30-minute interruption. The break may be satisfied by any non-driving period of 30 consecutive minutes (i.e., on-duty not driving, off-duty, sleeper berth, or any combination of these taken consecutively).
60/70 Hour Limit
May not drive after 60/70 hours on duty in 7/8 consecutive days. A driver may restart a 7/8 consecutive day period after taking 34 or more consecutive hours off duty.
Sleeper Berth Provision
Drivers may split their required 10-hour off-duty period, as long as one off-duty period (whether in or out of the sleeper berth) is at least 2 hours long and the other involves at least 7 consecutive hours spent in the sleeper berth. All sleeper berth pairings MUST add up to at least 10 hours. When used together, neither time period counts against the maximum 14- hour driving window.
Adverse Driving Conditions
Drivers are allowed to extend the 11-hour maximum driving limit and 14-hour driving window by up to 2 hours when adverse driving conditions are encountered.
A driver is exempt from the requirements of §395.8 and §395.11 if: the driver operates within a 150 air-mile radius of the normal work reporting location, and the driver does not exceed a maximum duty period of 14 hours. Drivers using the short-haul exception in §395.1(e)(1) must report and return to the normal work reporting location within 14 consecutive hours, and stay within a 150 air-mile radius of the work reporting location.
What has changed?
Short-haul Exception Expands the short-haul exception to 150 air-miles and allows a 14-hour work shift to take place as part of the exception.
Adverse Driving Conditions Exception Expands the driving window during adverse driving conditions by up to an additional 2 hours.
30-Minute Break Requirement Requires break of at least 30 consecutive minutes after 8 cumulative hours of driving time (instead of on-duty time) and allows an on-duty/not driving period to qualify as the required break.
Sleeper Berth Provision Modifies the sleeper berth exception to allow a driver to meet the 10-hour minimum off-duty requirement by spending at least 7 hours of that period in the berth combined with a minimum off-duty period of at least 2 hours spent inside or outside the berth, provided the two periods total at least 10 hours. When used together as specified, neither qualify period counts against the 14-hour driving window.
Educational Tool for Hours of Service (ETHOS)
FMCSA launched a new online tool that allows users to enter driver records of duty status to see if there are potential violations with the new hours of service regulations.
Learn More About The HOS Final Rule
If you still have questions after reviewing the materials provided above, please email email@example.com.
Who Must Comply?
Most commercial motor vehicle (CMV) drivers must comply. In general, a CMV is a vehicle that is used as part of a business and is involved in interstate commerce and fits any of these descriptions:
Weighs 10,001 pounds or more
Has a gross vehicle weight rating or gross combination weight rating of 10,001 pounds or more
Is designed or used to transport 16 or more passengers (including the driver) not for compensation
Is designed or used to transport 9 or more passengers (including the driver) for compensation
Is transporting hazardous materials in a quantity requiring placards
Last updated: Monday, May 24, 2021