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Wording Puts Truckers in Restart Limbo

Apr 11, 2016 at 03:43 PM CST
by Marty Cook


No news is currently the best news with the 34-hour restart uncertainty.

Shannon Newton, the president of the Arkansas Trucking Association, recently traveled with representatives of state trucking companies to Washington, D.C., to meet with members of Congress about the rule being in a sort of limbo. The issue at hand is the 34-hour restart for drivers.

“This is a national issue,” said Newton, whose group met with, among others, Rep. Rick Crawford, R-Ark. “It was our job to compel them that this is a really big issue for our industry. It does require a legislative solution. We’re really just trying to garner support.”

Since 2003, drivers have operated under a safety system that requires them to take a 34-hour break that resets their available on-job time. In July 2013, the Federal Motor Carriers Safety Administration tried to amend that provision to limit the restarts to once a week and to mandate that the rest time include consecutive 1 a.m. to 5 a.m. periods — when truckers would prefer to be driving because of fewer traffic headaches.