It’s that time of the year! Hours of service (HOS) updates are being released again, and this time we think that drivers will like most of the changes being made. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is leaving room for more flexibility with HOS, including 30-minute break updates and adverse driving condition updates. Below, we’ve put together some information on what exactly these changes are and when they’re going into effect.

What’s Getting Updated:

  • 30-Minute Breaks can now be done with either off-duty status or on-duty, not driving status. This is important for drivers. Now, drivers can do work in the yard, fuel, or finish paperwork while they fulfill their 30-minute break requirement at the same time. 
  • The Short-Haul Exemption’s hours are being extended by 2 hours of on-duty time, and the radius of “legal” short-hauling is widening from 100 air-miles to 150 air-miles. Property-carriers can now do 14 hours of drive time, while passenger-carriers can do 15 hours.
  • The Sleeper Berth (Split) Provision has some major updates coming its way. We’ll detail these changes further down the blog, but the main change is from 8 consecutive hours to 7 in the sleeper. 
  • Adverse Driving Rules are adding an additional 2 hours to account for the adverse driving conditions. So, once the new rule is in place, drivers will have a maximum of 4 additional driving hours when they encounter adverse weather or other bad driving conditions.


When Updates Go into Effect: 

Updates take effect on September 29th, 2020. DriveELD will have the changes implemented and ready to go into our application on this date, so you don’t have to worry about any lag in HOS updates. 


Extra Specifics on the Updates:

  • Short Haul Exemption:
    • Drivers must start and end their shift in the same location each day. 
    • Drivers must have at least 10 hours (property-carrying) or 8 hours (passenger-carrying) of off-duty time before driving again.
    • Drivers must stay within a 150 air-mile radius.Drivers cannot exceed 14 hours of on-duty time.
  • Sleeper Berth Split:
    • A single off-duty period is at least 2 hours long (in or out of sleeper berth), and the other off-duty period is at least 7 consecutive hours in the sleeper. Both periods must equal 10 hours when added together. 
    • Neither period (when paired) can count against the 14-hour drive time window. 
  • Adverse Driving Conditions:
    • Up to 4 hours can be added in the event that adverse driving conditions hinder a driver’s ability to finish a job or reach a destination on time. 
  • 30-Minute Break:
    • The 30-minute break requirement can be fulfilled in an off-duty, sleeper berth, or on-duty, not driving status. 

As always, feel free to reach out to the DriveELD team at contact@drive-eld.com or call us at 866-623-7483 if you have any questions.