"Hours-of-service" rules don’t work for construction

AGC of America organized a meeting with the administrator of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) and the agency’s top management team to discuss the need for a construction-industry exemption from hours-of-service (HOS) restrictions. A coalition of 13 construction-industry groups is working cooperatively on the exemption request and were all represented at the meeting.

The coalition made three main points to FMSCA.

First, trucks are an integral part of on-site construction activity because of the industry’s heavily reliance on them to move materials and equipment.

Second, construction drivers are not driving many hours nonstop, as much of their driving is of a short duration.

Third, Congress and FMCSA provided some limited exemptions for segments of the industry that are helpful, but that these exemptions cause confusion and administration issues making a broad industry exemption a more reasonable approach.

FMCSA acknowledged the group’s concerns and encouraged it to submit a formal industry-exemption request. FMCSA just ended taking comments on its HOS regulations that sought input on a variety of suggestions to make the rules more flexible and easier to administer. AGC and the coalition submitted comments in response to the FMCSA initiative which included the request for an industry exemption. The coalition continues to work cooperatively in seeking relief from these onerous requirements.

In October, AGC of Washington leaders met with members and staff of the state’s congressional delegation and advocated for changes to the hours-of-service restrictions.