Fatigue among truck drivers has been a problem ever since the development of the long-haul trucking industry. It is a leading cause of truck accidents in Texas and throughout the nation.
To address this long-standing problem, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) put in place an important regulation. Truck drivers who operate their vehicles more than 150 miles from their bases must take a 30-minute break within their first eight hours of duty. The ruling as it was first formulated also applied to short-haul truck drivers, but the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia exempted them from the regulation in a ruling handed down in 2013.
But time is money, and for that reason, many long-haul trucking companies and drivers dislike the 30-minute break rule. Recently, the FMCSA rejected a petition by the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) to rescind the rule. CVSA (which represents truck and bus inspectors in North America) claimed that the rule was difficult to enforce, led to log book violations and did little to improve road safety.
Common sense tells you that a fatigued truck driver represents a danger to himself and others on the road. The 30-minute break rule is a standard that enhances road safety.