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Court Upholds Most Provisions of HOS Rule

Friday, August 2, 2013  
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A federal appeals court upheld the majority of the government’s hours-of-service rule for truck drivers, rejecting most arguments presented by American Trucking Associations and Public Citizen.


The only provision that the court overturned was the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s decision not to exempt shorthaul drivers from the new requirement that drivers take 30-minute breaks before driving more than eight hours straight.


The court upheld the 30-minute break for all other drivers. ATA had challenged the break, saying the research FMCSA cited only justified requiring breaks from driving, not non-working breaks.

It also upheld the restrictions on the 34-hour restart that drivers can use to reset their weekly driving limits: It can be used only once every seven days and must include two periods from 1 a.m. to 5 a.m.

ATA filed suit in February 2012, asking the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia to block implementation of the HOS rule, which it said used flawed assumptions and analysis and was "arbitrary and capricious and contrary to law.”

 

ATA had argued that the rule was "overly restrictive and costly,” while Public Citizen, representing a collection of public interest groups, argued the rule "is insufficiently protective of public safety,” the court stated. FMCSA came "down squarely in the middle, believing it got everything ‘just right,’” the ruling said.

 

To view the full opinion of the U.S. Court of Appeals click here.