Hours of Service

Georgia Hours of Service Variance

With the recent uptick in demand for product coupled with a severe lack of available drivers, the GRMCA built and led a coalition of industry groups working with the Georgia Department of Public Safety (DPS) Motor Carrier Compliance Division (MCCD) to receive a temporary hours of service variance.  The variance allows each company’s drivers to receive an additional 10 hours of drive time per week.  This variance is for drivers who operate on an intrastate only basis.  This should provide additional flexibility for Georgia ready mix producers in meeting demand.

Below is additional information on the HOS variance, including actual language of the variance and frequently asked questions.

 

The following is the actual text of the variance:

1-395.341.Hours of Service–Temporary Variance; Intrastate Motor Carriers

A: Based on the Hours of Service variance authorized in Title 49, CFR, § 350.341 (e) for intrastate motor carriers, during the period December 15, 2014 to February 15, 2015, or during certain other  periods   specified through Administrative Order of the Commissioner of Public Safety, drivers and motor carriers operating commercial motor vehicles solely in intrastate commerce (Georgia only) are authorized to vary the Hours of Service limitations only to the following extent:
(1) A driver may drive a maximum of 12 hours, provided such driver has not been on duty for more than 16 hours;
(2) Respective of a driver’s normal work week, a driver may not drive after having been on duty 70 hours in 7 consecutive days or 80 hours in 8 consecutive days.

Note: All other Records of Duty Status and Hours of Service requirements specified in state and federal law remain in full force and effect.

B. This variance does not apply to:
(1) The transportation of hazardous materials(as defined by O.C.G.A. § 40-1-1), requiring a placard;
(2) The operation of vehicles designed or used to transport 16 or more people, including the driver;
(3) The operation of vehicles in interstate commerce, including the transportation of interstate freight or property.
(4) Drivers or motor carriers who exceed the Hours of Service variance provided herein.

C. The Commissioner of Public Safety may rescind this Rule and any associated Orders at any time to protect life, health, or safety.

Ref: Title 49, CFR, § 350.341(e) and O.C.G.A. §40-1-8 (e).

Frequently Asked Questions On Hours of Service

How does the variance work?
The variance does two major things for our industry.  First, it provides for drivers operating on an intrastate basis an additional 10 hours per week.  This raises the weekly cap on drivers’ hours from 60 to 70 hours for those companies who operate 6 days per week and 70 to 80 hours for those companies who operate 7 days per week.  Second, it allows companies to take advantage of the existing “12 and 16” rule more than one time per week.  That is to say, a driver can drive up to 12 hours in day but can be on duty up to 16 hours in one day.  All other hours of service rules and regulations continue to be in effect and must be observed.

When does the variance take effect?
UPDATE: The variance has been extended for an additional 90 days effective Friday, February 13, 2015 through Wednesday, May 13, 2015.  The original variance was effective for 90 days beginning on December 15, 2014 and ending on February 15, 2015.

Who does the variance apply to?
The variance applies to any intrastate driver in Georgia previously restricted to 60 hours in 7 days or 70 hours in 8 days.  The only exceptions are for those transporting hazardous materials, those carrying more than 16 passengers on board or those who cross state lines engaging in interstate commerce.

What if my drivers cross state lines? Does the variance apply to them?
If your drivers at times cross states lines to deliver product, they are restricted to the federal standard of 60 hours in 7 days or 70 hours in 8 days.

Is this allowable under the Code of Federal Regulations?
Yes, the federal government allows states to adopt the 10 hour variance under Part 350 of Title 49 in the CFR.  Georgia had not previously done so and therefore drivers were limited to the federal HOS standards of 60 hours in 7 days or 70 hours in 8.

Who was proactive in securing the variance?
The Georgia Ready Mixed Concrete Association discovered that Georgia had yet to adopt the variance.  The GRMCA built a coalition to support the effort that included the Georgia Chamber of Commerce, the Georgia Highway Contractors Association, the Georgia Transportation Alliance, the Georgia Motor Trucking Association, the Georgia Construction Aggregate Association, the Associated General Contractors of Georgia and the Georgia Mining Association.

Who do I contact for more information?
The best place to contact is the Georgia Department of Public Safety Motor Carrier Compliance Division.  They can be reached at (404) 624-7212.  They can also be found here on the web.

Other Resources

GRMCA Coalition Request for Variance

Department of Public Safety Formal Order