Research Project

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Hours-of-Service Field Study

Goal

To evaluate the effectiveness of the new 34-hour restart provision on driver fatigue.

Background

Congress directed, in Section 32301 of the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP–21), to complete a field study on the efficacy of the restart rule published on December 27, 2011. The field study shall expand upon the results of the laboratory-based study entitled, "Investigation into Motor Carrier Practices to Achieve Optimal CMV Driver Performance: Phase I and II." Congress stated that ". . . in conducting the field study, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) should ensure. . ." the following:

  • Field study is consistent with the laboratory-based study methodology.
  • Data is representative of drivers affected by the maximum driving time requirements.
  • Analysis is statistically valid.
  • Field study follows the plan for ‘‘Scheduling & Fatigue Recovery Project."

MAP-21 requires the Agency to provide to Congress no later than September 30, 2013, a report detailing the results of this field study

Summary

This study is a field operational test of the new 34-hour restart provision requiring 2 nights of sleep between work weeks. The study team will design a field evaluation that has a protocol that is similar to the above-mentioned lab study for Phase Ithat was conducted at Washington State University. This field evaluation will be with three volunteer carrier(s) and with commercial motor vehicle (CMV) drivers who are using the 34-hour restart period. The study agent will recruit CMV drivers who routinely drive and work approximately 70 hours per week. The minimum 34-hour restart, 2-night provision only really pertains to CMV drivers who drive predominately during the nighttime hours.

Outcomes

A report that identifies the efficacy of the new 34-hour restart provision at providing adequate rest for CMV drivers.

Milestones

July 2013 Completed data collection
September 2013 Data reduction and analysis
October 2013 Draft final report
October 2013 Final report

Funding

FY 2012 $1,500,000 FMCSA Research and Technology

Status 

Project currently on track for a completion in September 2014.

Project Lead

For more information, contact Martin Walker of FMCSA's Research Division at (202) 385-2364 or martin.r.walker@dot.gov

Contractor

Virginia Technical Transportation Institute
 

Updated: Wednesday, April 16, 2014