More than 80% of motor carriers have experienced a productivity loss since the new Hours-of-Service rules went into effect, with nearly half stating that they require more drivers to haul the same amount of freight, according to an American Transportation Research Institute (ATRI) survey.
The July 1 changes to the Hours-of-Service rules implemented by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) include provisions which limit use of the 34-hour restart and require a rest break before driving after 8 hours on-duty.
Among the operational and economic impacts identified by ATRI are:
- Among commercial drivers surveyed by ATRI, 82.5 percent indicated that the new HOS rules have had a negative impact on their quality of life, with more than 66 percent indicating increased levels of fatigue.
- Commercial drivers are forced to drive in more congested time periods, although the FMCSA Regulatory Impact Analysis did not address increased safety risks with truck traffic diversion to peak hour traffic.
- The majority of drivers (67%) report decreases in pay since the rules took effect.
- The impacts on driver wages for all over-the-road drivers total $1.6 billion to $3.9 billion in annualized loss.
ATRI’s analysis is based on industry survey data of over 2,300 commercial drivers and 400 motor carriers as well a detailed analysis of logbook data representing 40,000+ commercial drivers.
“We anticipated significant impacts on our operations and across the entire supply chain from the new rules and our experience since July 1st is bearing that out,” commented Kevin Burch, President of Jet Express. “ATRI’s analysis clearly documents the productivity impacts and real financial costs being borne by carriers and drivers. It’s only a matter of time before these impacts ripple throughout the nation’s economy.”