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FMCSA seeks public comment on ‘yard move’ definition, how it impacts drivers’ HOS

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FMCSA seeks public comment on ‘yard move’ definition, how it impacts drivers’ HOS
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration hopes to clarify the definition of “yard moves” for drivers of commercial motor vehicles and how such moves affect drivers’ hours of service.

WASHINGTON — The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) hopes to clarify regulations about “yard moves” — movement of a commercial motor vehicle (CMV) on private property — and how they affect commercial vehicle drivers’ hours of service.

The proposed guidance would count movement of CMVs in “yards” would be considered “yard moves” and could be recorded as “on duty, not driving” time instead of “driving” time. A notice published in the Federal Register Jan. 4 requests public comments on the agency’s definition of “yard,” and offers examples of properties that do and do not meet the qualification of “yard.”

Examples of properties that may qualify as yards include (but are not limited to) intermodal yards or port facilities, a motor carrier’s place of business or a shipper’s privately owned parking lot. A public road may be considered a “yard” IF the road is restricted by traffic-control measures such as lights, gates, flaggers or other means.

Properties that do not meet the qualifications of a “yard” include (but are not limited to) public rest areas and public roads without the traffic-control measures noted above.

In addition to clarifying the definition of “yard,” FMCSA is asking for input on the following questions:

  • Would defining “yard moves” in the agency’s regulations provide necessary clarification and therefore benefit carriers and drivers?
  • Are there other properties or situations where drivers may be in a “yard move” status that should be included as examples in this guidance?
  • Would adding examples of “yard moves” be beneficial for this guidance (e.g., moving a CMV for maintenance)? If so, provide examples for consideration.

Public comments must be submitted by Feb. 3 for consideration. To review FMCSA’s proposal and submit comments online, click here.

 

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The Trucker News Staff produces engaging content for not only TheTrucker.com, but also The Trucker Newspaper, which has been serving the trucking industry for more than 30 years. With a focus on drivers, the Trucker News Staff aims to provide relevant, objective content pertaining to the trucking segment of the transportation industry. The Trucker News Staff is based in Little Rock, Arkansas.
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7 Comments

I only yard move status in posted lots or my employers yard facility. It really helps alot with my drive clock. Some days i am really pushing my drive clock. Without the use of yard move I would run outta time. I am not OTR. I am a home daily semi driver.

I use yard move when moving in, around or between yards …
If I’m not rolling on the highway, I’m on yard move …

Moving off pumps at fuel stop should be included. Mabe this is part of why trucks stay at the pump so long.

Yeah yard moves hurt us especially if you have a 2am appointment with just a few hours being unloaded dropping the trailer going back to find dropped trailer being blocked off for nearly a hour because some can’t even back up then you have to leave the property. And most companies are on different time zones and you’re on duty waiting for them to open and find you another load plus dead head to get the load all which is going against your 14 hour day now you’re under a load that you’re racing the clock to get delivered and depending on where you’re load is going to you could be losing more hours. !!! And you can’t make any miles on the first day because you have lost 8 hours just to get your reload well you can’t go to sleep because you have already been off for 17 hours but you still have to deliver at 2am

A yard move is a work duty status description that still goes against your 14 hr clock. It is a description, nothing more. Its use should be confined to non-public access facilities including your companies place of business, shippers, and receivers. If not, companies will push the envelope on how a driver can use this function. The ELD should keep this in check but companies always find a way.

My question is why can I not be on a yard move, drop and hook, and pre-trip/ post-trip work duty staus all at the same time? All of these work duty descriptions are considered on-duty not driving. Obviously I am not driving around my home terminals yard the entire time. I am dropping a trailer, post trip. Driving to locate my loaded trailer, pre trip. My company makes me seperate each action in the work duty staus description everytime I do this.

One reason companies do that is to track all available metrics for analytics. The larger a company the more important it is to track how and when work is being done and the costs associated with it. A large company can lose pennies per hour per employee and that costs millions per year overall.

I believe issues like this reveal a certain ambiguity to the rules and regulations. This is to be expected of any government bureaucracy. In one sense they go to far with regulating, but in another not far enough. I believe the studies they use to decide on particular regulations are flawed. A study is only as good as the knowledge and abilities of those performing the work and their process of data collection and analysis.

As far as I know the idea of HOS is to produce safe working habits and highways. Bureaucracies tend to create restrictions on an industry wide focus, but there are many factors that do not seem to be considered that are important.

A driver could be in compliance with the 8 and 11 hour rules, but be dangerously impaired by fatigue. Also 10 hours off for sleep is no guarantee a driver will get enough sleep to drive many hours straight. The 14 hour work window is also no guarantee of safe operation. A driver who drops trailers and leaves with or without another trailer is affected differently than a driver who must unload their trailer at one or more stops manually. That labor increases fatigue dramatically.
I typically function on 5-6 hours sleep per day, but I feel like driving straight for 8 hours is not safe for me. However I could easily drive 12 hours per day if I awake, drive 6 hours, nap for 2 hours and drive 6 more. I would still have 8 hours of off time and be more rested for the next leg of the route. What of a driver that needs 8 hours sleep, but during their 10 hour off period spends 4 hours doing activities? Such drivers would be in compliance with regulations, but unsafe on the highways.

I know studies remain ongoing, but they should be vetted and also the qualifications considered of those conducting such studies. Are they just some average scientist looking for a few months of easy grant money, or are they serious professionals with high qualifications in statistical analysis and investigation. Will they consult long time safe drivers as well as those with accidents and those from all walks of life such as gender, age, medical needs etc.? Too many lives and livelihoods are at stake to rely on less than stellar performance by all those in authority.

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