FMCSA is proposing to revise the regulatory guidance concerning
recording time operating a commercial motor vehicle as a “yard move.” This guidance applies to all commercial motor vehicle (CMV) drivers required to record their hours of service.
The Agency requests public comments on the proposed guidance, which includes examples of properties that are and are not “yards.” Movements of CMVs in “yards” would be considered “yard moves” and could be recorded as on-duty not driving time rather than driving time.
View the notice here.
- May a driver, who drops his or her last load at a receiver’s facility use personal conveyance to return to their normal work location (i.e. home or terminal)?
No. Returning home or to the terminal from a dispatched trip is a continuation of the trip, and therefore cannot be considered personal conveyance.
- The guidance allows for “authorized use of a CMV to travel home after working at an offsite location.” What is meant by the term “offsite” when used in this context?
The term refers to a location, other than a carrier’s terminal or a shipper’s or receiver’s facility, where a driver works for a temporary period for a particular job. Specifically, this term is intended for construction and utility companies that set up base camps near a major job and operate from there for days or weeks at a time. These remote locations are considered “offsite” locations. Therefore, travel between home and that offsite location is considered commuting time, and qualifies as personal conveyance.
- Is personal conveyance treated any differently when the driver is hauling hazardous materials?
No. There is no restriction on personal conveyance regarding hazardous materials transportation, provided that the driver complies with provisions of 49 CFR parts 177 and 397.
- Can a driver who claims the short haul exception use personal conveyance?
Yes, there is no connection between personal conveyance and the short-haul exception. As always, off duty time does not extend the 12-hour duty time limitation.
- How is personal conveyance time calculated in the hours-of-service rules?
Time spent under personal conveyance is off duty time.
- May a driver use personal conveyance when they run out of available (driving/on-duty)
No, except for the one exception described in the guidance where a driver who runs out of hours while at a shipper’s or receiver’s facility may drive from that facility to a nearby, safe location to park, provided that the driver allows adequate time to obtain rest in accordance with daily minimum off-duty periods under the Hours of Service rules before beginning to drive. Personal conveyance is those times where a driver is operating solely for a non-business purpose and cannot be used to extend the duty day.
- Are there maximum distance time or distance limits for the use of personal conveyance?
No. However, it is important to note that the provision in §392.3 of the FMCSRs, prohibiting the operation of a commercial motor vehicle while fatigued, continues to apply. Therefore, a driver must get adequate rest before returning to driving.
- I f a driver picks up the commercial motor vehicle from a repair facility once repairs are complete, would the driver be allowed to use personal conveyance to their residence from the repair shop?
No, travel for repair and maintenance work is being done in the furtherance of the business and is considered on duty time.
- Can a loaded vehicle be used as personal conveyance?
Yes. Determining personal conveyance is based on the nature of the movement, not whether the vehicle is laden.
- Can personal conveyance time be combined with other off-duty time to complete a 10 or 34-hour break?
Yes, since PC is off-duty time. However, it is important to note that the provision in §392.3 of the FMCSRs, prohibiting the operation of a commercial motor vehicle while ill or fatigued continues to apply.
- Can a driver be inspected during personal conveyance? If so, what is the driver’s duty status during the inspection?
Yes. Since the driver is still subject to the FMCSRs, the driver or vehicle can be inspected. The driver’s duty status would be “on-duty, not driving” during the inspection.
The recently published FMCSA guidance on personal conveyance provides additional flexibility for fleets that choose to allow their drivers to utilize off-duty driving or personal conveyance. The flexibility comes from the removal of the “unladen” term, which eliminates the strict requirement for a driver’s vehicle to be “empty,” and the appropriate use scenarios in Interpretation Question #26 from §395.8.
Each personal conveyance scenario will be reviewed by enforcement based on at least these 4 primary points:
- Is the driver ill or fatigued? Does the driver’s condition allow them to safely drive the vehicle?”
- Is the driver off-duty? See the definition of on-duty in §395.2 which includes any work in support of the business or time involved in business activities. Unless the driver is completely released from duty and free to pursue activities of their choosing, the driver must log on-duty.
- Is the move purely personal with no benefit to the business? A move benefitting the business would include moving closer to the driver’s next pick up or delivery, or a maintenance move performed to support the business.
- Is the move to strictly seek the closest, safe place to park, even if a driver has moved along the route line to the next business-related location?
7 Examples of Appropriate Uses of a CMV While Off-duty for Personal Conveyance
The following are examples of appropriate uses of a CMV while off-duty for personal conveyance include, but are not limited to:
- Time spent traveling from a driver’s en route lodging (such as a motel or truck stop) to restaurants and entertainment facilities.
- Commuting between the driver’s terminal and his or her residence, between trailer-drop lots and the driver’s residence, and between work sites and his or her residence. In these scenarios, the commuting distance combined with the release from work and start to work times must allow the driver enough time to obtain the required restorative rest as to ensure the driver is not fatigued.
- Time spent traveling to a nearby, reasonable, safe location to obtain required rest after loading or unloading. The time driving under personal conveyance must allow the driver adequate time to obtain the required rest in accordance with minimum off-duty periods under 49 CFR 395.3(a)(1) (property-carrying vehicles) or 395.5(a) (passenger-carrying vehicles) before returning to on-duty driving, and the resting location must be the first such location reasonably available.
- Moving a CMV at the request of a safety official during the driver’s off-duty time
- Time spent traveling in a motorcoach without passengers to en route lodging (such as motel or truck stop), or to restaurants and entertainment facilities and back to the lodging. In this scenario, the driver of the motorcoach can claim personal conveyance provided the driver is off-duty. Other off-duty drivers may be on board the vehicle, and are not considered passengers.
- Time spent transporting personal property while off-duty.
- Authorized use of a CMV to travel home after working at an offsite location.
Check out the training video here…
How familiar are you with Federal Motor Carriers Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) HOS Rules and Regulations? The FMCSA has updated the HOS section of their website to include a pre-recorded webinar titled “Hours of Service: How Familiar Are You?” The Hours of Service regulations address the number of hours that a commercial motor vehicle (CMV) driver may be on the road and the number of hours a CMV driver may be on duty before a required period of rest. The regulation also addresses the minimum amount of time that must be reserved for rest and the total number of hours a driver may be on duty in a “work-week.”
In this pre-recorded webinar, FMCSA’s subject matter expert Tom Yager, Chief of the Driver and Carrier Operations Division and Peter Chandler, Lead Transportation Specialist in the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration Passenger Carrier Division, provide an overview of the hours of service regulation and hours of service exemptions.
The pre-recorded webinar addresses the following topics:
- Purpose of the Hours of Service Rules and Regulations
- Drivers’ Responsibilities
- Carriers’ Responsibilities
- Property Carrier Hours of Service Driving Time Limits
- Passenger Carrier Hours of Service Driving Time Limits
- Acceptable Recording Methods
- Important Dates and Deadlines for Electronic Logging Devices (ELDs)
- Limited Exceptions to the Hours of Service Rules and Regulations