Truckers Tired of New Sleep Regulations

Phil Cohen

Sleep rules enacted by the government are taking a toll on many truckers.  With numerous efficiency regulations and electronic monitoring devices capping speeds, truckers say they are tired of the new rules.

Additionally, other federal rule changes introduced in July are also putting stress on truckers.  One of the revised regulations imposes a shorter work week for drivers, reduced from 82 hours to 70.  Furthermore, truckers are required to take one 30-minute break throughout the first eight hours of their shift.  Another revised rule affects the 34-hour break required between workweeks.  The new regulation extends this break over two nights, including hours between 1 a.m. and 5 a.m.

white semi truck backed into a dock at night

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, the changes were enacted in hopes of reducing driver fatigue and crashes.  Although the FMCSA reported a 26 percent drop in large truck collisions in the decade ending in 2011, the agency still believes that these incidents are occurring far too much.  Nevertheless, further analysis conducted by the agency indicates that the new sleep rules, which impact drivers of about 2.3 million long-haul trucks, would actually prevent the potential for nearly 1,400 crashes and 560 injuries, saving 19 lives a year. 

However, the trucking industry holds a different view.  They believe that the rules are too expensive, and could potentially be dangerous since the regulations place more truckers on the roads throughout rush hour.  Additionally, the sleep rules force truckers to rest when they’re wide awake and drive when they are actually tired.  In fact, many truckers report the sleep regulations are disrupting their sleep cycles and causing more stress in their lives.

Ever since the new sleep rules took effect, Schneider National Inc. reported a 3 to 4 percent decrease in its shipments.  Furthermore, a panel composed of trucking executives at the American Trucking Association’s trucking conference revealed that the new rules were increasing driver turnover rates.

Many truckers, especially long-haul drivers, are impacted by the new rule involving electronic monitoring systems.  Although traffic, breakdowns, and loading delays would cost time and money, truckers were able to compensate for lost time by taking alternate shortcuts, or driving  faster. Thanks to the elog, an electronic monitoring system that has taken the place of a log book, the smallest amount of cheating on hours or routes are reported.  Additionally, the new monitoring device won’t allow truckers to exceed a speed of 65 miles an hour. These systems record whether a truck is on or off; when a driver is on duty; and gas mileage. In an industry that often pays drivers by the mile, these devices are taking their toll on truckers paychecks.

As the new sleep rules continue to frustrate truckers, trucking companies must be able to keep their drivers satisfied in order to avoid high turnover rates.  Freight factoring for truckers can help transportation companies make payroll, pay for fuel, cover repair costs and fund any on-the-road expense with no problem.  With immediate cash advances, truck invoice factoring allows small to mid-sized trucking companies solve their cash flow problems instantly.  In addition to paying drivers in a timely fashion, factoring for truckers can help trucking companies haul more loads and increase their overall revenue.  Why wait 30 to 60 days to be paid for trucking invoices? Improve your financial condition by factoring your trucking invoices today!  Request a free factoring quote online now.


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Phil Cohen

Phil is the owner of PRN Funding and sister company Factor Finders. He has been an authority in the factoring industry for over 20 years, serving on the board of directors for several factoring associations.


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