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United States Department of Transportation United States Department of Transportation

Regulatory Impact Analysis for 2020 Final Rule

The Regulatory Impact Analysis (RIA) provides an assessment of the costs and benefits of the changes to the Hours of Service (HOS) regulations. The current HOS rules limit property-carrying commercial motor vehicle (CMV) drivers to 11 hours of driving time within a 14-consecutive hour period after coming on duty following 10 consecutive hours off duty. Drivers who use sleeper berths may combine 2 hours of off-duty time. Drivers must take at least 30 minutes off-duty no later than 8 hours after coming on duty if they wish to continue driving after the 8th hour. Drivers must record their on and off-duty time in a record of duty status (RDOs)- previously captured in paper "logs" but today (with certain exceptions) through electronic logging devices (ELDs).

The Department of Transportation (DOT) has longstanding processes to periodically review regulations and other agency actions. If appropriate, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) will revise regulations to ensure that they continue to meet the needs for which they were originally designed, and that they remain justified. The HOS regulations were identified as an area for potential modifications in 2018, due to changes in tracking HOS brought about by the implementation of the ELD rulemaking (80 Federal Register (FR) 78292, Dec. 16, 2015). The accuracy of the electronic data provided to enforcement officials is much higher than the information that was previously provided on paper.

In response to public comments received on the August 23, 2018, advance notice of proposed rulemaking (ANPRM) (83 FR 42631), at listening sessions held by FMCSA, and on the August 14, 2019, notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) (84 FR 44190), the final rule will: (1) provide flexibility for the 30-minute break rule by not requiring a break until the driver has had 8 hours of driving time (instead of on-duty time) without an interruption of at least 30 minutes and allowing the break to be satisfied by a driver using on-duty, not-driving status, rather than off duty; (2) modify the sleeper-berth exception to allow drivers greater flexibility to split their required 10-hours off duty into two periods, one of at least 7 consecutive hours in the sleeper berth and the other of not less than 2 consecutive hours, either off duty or in the sleeper berth, with neither period counting against the driver’s 14-hour driving window; (3) change the short-haul exception available to certain commercial motor vehicle (CMV) drivers by lengthening the drivers’ maximum on-duty period from 12 to 14 hours and extending from 100 air miles (115.08 statute miles) to 150 air miles (172.6 statute miles),2 the radius within which the driver may operate; and (4) modify the adverse driving conditions exception by extending by 2 hours the maximum window during which driving is permitted. The first two items apply to drivers operating property-carrying CMVs, while the final two items apply to drivers operating either property-carrying or passenger-carrying CMVs.

This final rule will not result in any new costs for regulated entities. Instead, this rule will result in increased flexibility for drivers and a quantified reduction in costs for motor carriers. The Federal government and States will incur one-time training costs of $8.6 million for training inspectors on the new requirements. The Federal government also will incur a one-time electronic Record of Duty Status (eRODS) software update cost of approximately $20,000. The change to the 30-minute break requirement will result in a reduction in opportunity cost, or a cost savings, for motor carriers. The FMCSA estimates the 10-year motor carrier costs attributable to the changes to the 30-minute break provision at -$2,814.3 million, (or $2,814.3 million in cost savings). As shown in Table ES-1, FMCSA estimates the total costs of this final rule at -$2,366.2 million (or $2,366.2 million in cost savings) discounted at 3%, and -$1,917.5 million (or $1,917.5 million in cost savings) discounted at 7%. Expressed on an annualized basis, this equates to -$277.4 million in costs (or $277.4 million in cost savings) at a 3% discount rate, and -$273.0 million in costs (or $273.0 million in cost savings) at a 7% discount rate. All values are in 2018 dollars.

Last updated: Sunday, March 16, 2014