Hours of Service Changes: July 1, 2013

The American Trucking Association (ATA) has announced earlier this week that the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has denied ATA’s request to postpone the July 1, 2013 compliance date for the hours of service changes.

Effective July 1, 2013: all drivers and motor carriers must be in compliance with two new rules that may have an impact on those drivers operating on daily basis. The “34-hour restart” rule is likely to have the biggest impact  as drivers will now only be able to utilize the restart once every 168 hours (once a week). In addition, the restart must include two periods between 1 a.m. and 5 a.m. FMCSA stated that the decision behind the “1 a.m.-5a.m” requirement was based on a history of high crash rates that occur between those hours.  The second rule prohibits drivers from driving more than 8 hours continuously without taking at least a 30 minute break. Meal breaks or any other off-duty time of at least 30 minutes will qualify as a break.

Carrier’s currently operating will have until July 1, 2013 at which point federal and state agencies will begin enforcing the rule.

We’d like to hear your thoughts on the new rule changes; or visit our Linked-in page and join our group!

About Dan Horvath

Dan is the Director of Compliance for TransForce, Inc.


  1. Michael Gene Elmore says:

    Thanks for the heads up.

  2. Thanks for the F Y I. I will make a note of the new change. Thank You.


    Dan Almazan Quintana

  3. Bob Hart says:

    I drive a day cab locally. My shift is 8 and 50 minutes, but it works out to 9 hrs. I only drive about 4 hrs in that 9 hrs. Each trip is approximately 30 minutes one way. My company says they are going to comply with the 30minute break rule by making me take a30 minute break. I don’t have a 30 minute block of time. The way i read the rule i have to drive 8 hrs not work 8 hr. before i need to take the 30 minute break. Am i correct?

    • Dan Horvath says:


      The rule states you cannot DRIVE if more than 8 consecutive hours have passed since the last off-duty (or sleeper berth) period of at least half an hour. This would include “on-duty, not driving time AND driving time”. And you can take your break anytime within that 8 hours, it does not require you to drive (or be on-duty) for 8 hours before you can take the break.

      I hope this helps you, please e-mail me: dhorvath@transforce.com if i can be of any further help. Also, the FMCSA has great guides and publications that can help you understand the rules: http://www.fmcsa.dot.gov

  4. So basically you can only drive 8 hours vs 11 bours. If you try to use sleeper berth, you’ll be setting yourself for violations.

  5. Can you tell me im a local driver in California,do the new rules apply to me?? Thanks

    • Dan Horvath says:


      The new rules (34 hour re-start and 30 minute break) as well as all other hours of service regulations do apply if you are a local or short haul driver engaged in interstate commerce. Remember the Hours of Service regulations apply to motor carriers engaged in interstate commerce. If your company is local, and not operating interstate, you would then be required to follow any state regulations or company regulations.

      Please contact me directly should you require any more assistance.

  6. You are working for a non-profit, not for hire, and a university. what are the rules for hours of service.

    • Dan Horvath says:

      Sarah-the rules depend on what type of vehicle (is it commercial vehicle or not, truck vs. bus, etc) FMCSA has information on their website that may be able to help.

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