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ATA challenges HOS rules in appeals court

The American Trucking Associations recently put forth an argument in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. The ATA is requesting the three-judge panel reverse the new regulations set forth by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration in 2011, which were implemented in an attempt to curb truck driver fatigue. The new regulations are set to go into effect on July 1.

The ATA posits that the changes the FMCSA put into place were baseless and were done with an agenda in mind. The ATA also charges that the new regulations would seriously impact drivers' ability to effectively coordinate their schedules.

The regulations revolve around required changes to hours of service as well as mandatory rest periods for drivers. Under the new regulations, drivers would be forced to use a restart period once every seven days. Drivers would also be forced to take their required off-duty breaks away from the job site.

The panel is not required to render a ruling by a specific date, but the ATA is hoping for a swift decision. The ATA has requested that the FMCSA hold off implementing the new regulations until three months after the panel gives it verdict, but the FMCSA has no plans to delay implementation of the new regulations.

Whether the new regulations go into effect or not, drivers of both trucks and vehicles need to be aware of each others' presence on the roadways. Accidents that involve cars and trucks can have devastating effects on those involved. Anyone who is involved in such an accident could seek compensation for injuries and expenses.

Source: American Trucking Associations, "U.S. Appeals Court Hears ATA Challenge to HOS Rules," Sean McNally, March 15, 2013

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