30-minute Break Rule

Topic 27319 | Page 1

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Steven E.'s Comment
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I am going to be making a run whereby I will be using an ELD for the first time (I only drive as CDL once a year or so). I have a couple of questions about the 30-minute break rule. I know it must be taken after 8 hours of driving, but what if it is easier to take it before a full 8 hours? In other words, could I drive for 5 hours or 6, take the 30-minute break, then resume driving for another 5 hours without having to take another break during the 14-hour window?


Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.
Bobcat_Bob's Comment
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Yes, you can do that but it has to be taken after at least 2 hours on duty and before hour 8. You do not need to wait for 8 hours on duty to take it, but taking it only grants another 8 hours so if you take it too early you will have to take another one.

Steppenwolf 's Comment
member avatar

Yep what he said... I try to drive 4 1/2 to 5 hours then at least 30 min break sometimes more...then look for parking somewhere in last couple of hours...

Errol V.'s Comment
member avatar

Steve, it's not AFTER 8 hours, but you can drive no more than 8 hours without a 30. Since you can drive a total 11 hours, don't stop for your break until after you've driven 3 hours.

Math: 11 - 3 = 8. If you stop in less than 8, you'll need another 30 to get your total 11 in.

2 - (30) - 8 - (another 30) - 1

Mr. Curmudgeon's Comment
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I try to start mine at the 5.5 hour point. Finish up at 6hr into day, and you've got another full 8, unless you expend your drive hours beforehand.

Steven E.'s Comment
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Errol V., yes I know it's no more than 8 hours. I misstated.

RealDiehl's Comment
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Unless I'm in a rush or have a scheduled fuel stop within the first few hours, I tend to make pit stop for coffee and potty after about 4 hours. I then take my 30 between the 7 and 8 hour mark. It helps to break up the day and allows me to stretch my legs.

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