Hours of Service of Drivers: United States Department of Energy (DOE); Application for Exemption
Notice of application for exemption; request for comments.
FMCSA has received an application from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) for an exemption from certain provisions of the Agency's hours-of-service (HOS) regulations. DOE proposes that its contract motor carriers and their employee-drivers engaged in the transportation of transuranic waste (TRU) be granted an exemption from the HOS rules pertaining to use of a sleeper berth (SB). Current HOS rules require that all SB rest regimens include, in part, the regular use of a SB period of at least 8 hours--combined with a separate period of at least 2 hours, either in the SB, off-duty or some combination of both--to gain the equivalent of at least 10 consecutive hours off-duty. DOE proposes that its contract drivers be allowed to take the equivalent of 10 consecutive hours off duty by splitting SB time into two periods, provided neither of the two periods is less than 2 hours. DOE asserts that if its request for exemption is granted, the level of safety of its TRU operations would be equivalent to, or greater than, the level of safety that would be obtained by complying with the current HOS regulations. FMCSA requests public comment on DOE's application for exemption.