My First Run-in With The HOS Brick Wall

Topic 9543 | Page 2

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Pat M.'s Comment
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I ran into a HOS conflict within 2 months of driving. It was my mistake with the math. I was only off duty for 9.5 hours. Was given a warning and put out of service for 10 hours. Well at the time I was using a Dodge 5500 so we dropped the trailer and the other person with me drove the truck home. He did not have a CDL so he could not pull the trailer. Well we were only 30 miles from home. Well after that 10 hours were up I went back to pick up the trailer at 10:30 pm and I was more tired at that time than I was a Noon when I was pulled over.

Oh and the reason for pulling me over was that he thought I was over weight. We had the ability to scale 45k gross with this setup but could only get 43k gross because we could not get the weight up on the steers without another axle set being over.

7300 on steers 200 under 13460 on drives 40 under 23980 on trailer 20 under

Since I was new at the time he let me off with a warning. Never made that mistake again.


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.


Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Joe S. (a.k.a. The Blue 's Comment
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I have been with companies that use paper logs. I am now with a company that uses the electronic logs. My second company matter of fact.

Brett was smart when he used paper logs. He used them to a smart advantage.

But I have also known drivers that used them to their advantage just because they wanted or needed a bigger paycheck.

One log truck driver I used to know drove 20 hours a day 7 days a week for almost three weeks because he had a 17,000 dollar truck repair bill that he had to pay.

One of the companies that I used to work for would work us 20 hour days during their "busy season". We were told that if we wanted to work, it was either that or hit the road, they would find someone that needed a job more than we did.

It wasn't unusual for me to drive or be on duty 15-18 hours, drop a load at one shipper , change log books, head off to another shipper to pick up another load. And maybe get 2 hours sleep on the bench seat of my vehicle.

On one trip I drove 935 miles in one shot. Because I was told "It had to be done".

Do I agree with all of the HOS rules? No. They could be better. Much better. And I agree with Brett. I hate the 14 hour rule.

But something had to be done. #1, To make sure the "crazy" drivers out there became safer. And #2, to stop making companies "force" drivers to drive outside there limits and not be safe.

Do some changes need made? Yes. But each driver can't have their own set of rules. They have to TRY and do what is best for the majority.

I have had drivers tell me that they have sat at a shipper for 4-5 hours and they were fresh and the hours shouldn't count against the driver.

Well, maybe that is true for some people. But I sure can't get any good rest when I am having to set in the driver's seat to watch that little green light come on.

Maybe if I were allowed to catch some sleep, then yeah maybe. But I have been to very few shipper/receivers that actually come out and tell you that you are ready to go.

Most have told me, keep an eye on the light. When it turns green, come and get your paperwork. And that can be anywhere from an hour to 8 or 9 hours later.

As far as 70 hours in 8 days. I have no idea how in the world they came up with that figure. I guess they had to come up with something.

How many hours a week do you want to work? 80? 90? 100?

Now the 8 day figure has me really puzzled. Why not 70 hours in 7 days??? That would make more sense.

The only thing I can figure, and this is only a guess. Was to try to MAKE driver's take a longer break at the end of a week.

I have been around trucking for many years. I started in high school working on a dock loading trucks. Things are not like they used to be. In the "good ole days" you could get by with a lot more than you can today.

Traffic has increased 100 fold in the last 10 years. Maybe even more. And truck traffic. I won't even try to guess how much it has increased over just the last few years.

So yeah, something had to be done. Is it perfect. Heck no. Not by a long shot. Will it ever be perfect? Not as long as politicians have anything to do with it.

So, we only have one choice. Work it to the best advantage that we can and go from there. Till it gets better.

There is only two things in life that you can bet on. Death and change. The rules will change one day. But it may not be for the better. We just have to live with it and move forward the best we can if this is the lifestyle that we want.

Keep it safe out here, the life you save might be your own.

The Blue Angel.

Electronic Logs:

Electronic Onboard Recorder

Electronic Logbook

A device which records the amount of time a vehicle has been driven. If the vehicle is not being driven, the operator will manually input whether or not he/she is on duty or not.


The customer who is shipping the freight. This is where the driver will pick up a load and then deliver it to the receiver or consignee.


Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
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