Hours of Service (HOS) Regulations

Truck drivers work long daily and weekly hours on a continual basis. Many accidents are caused by drivers who drive carelessly because they are sleepy, less alert and react slower to crisis situations. The FMCSA established Hours of Service (HOS) regulations to reduce driver fatigue and increase safety.

Within the FMCSA Regulations are a set of rules referred to as Hours of Service (HOS). These regulations are designed to prevent tired truckers from getting behind the wheel and causing serious accidents.

What are Hours of Service Regulations?

“Hours of Service” (HOS) regulations give truck drivers the maximum amount of time they are permitted to be on duty, including driving time, and specify the number and length of rest periods.

  • No more than 11 hours driving following 10 consecutive hours off duty
  • No more than 14 total hours driving and working after starting a shift
  • No more than 60 hours in a 7-day period or 70 hours in 8 days

Truck drivers are required to keep a detailed logbook showing their compliance with the Hours of Service regulations. This includes recording their duty status every 24 hours, including total miles driven and total hours worked.

“On-duty” time includes time when a driver is conducting any work for a motor carrier outside of driving. This includes things such as loading and unloading their trailers.

Truck Accidents Due to Common Hours of Service Violations

prevent tired drivers truck driversTruck driver fatigue is one of the leading causes of truck accidents. Driving fatigued is dangerous for anyone but can be especially risky for semi-truck drivers who spend long hours on the road. Fatigue can lead to slower reaction times, impair a driver’s ability to make sound decisions, and a reduced ability to acknowledge one’s own exhaustion. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention identifies truck drivers as one of the high-risk drivers for drowsy driving.

Being overtired dulls reflexes, impairs judgment, and increases the chances of falling asleep at the wheel. In an effort to wake up, truck drivers may also speed up and collide with incoming motorists.

Listed among the most common causes of trucking accidents, you will find fatigued, sleepy or tired drivers, someone who has been driving too long and too many hours without rest.

When you have questions, our team is here to answer them for you.

HOS Violations

An HOS violation occurs when a truck or commercial motor vehicle (CMV) driver goes over their allotted hours for being on the road.

For truck drivers that transport different goods or cargo, their common violations include:

  • Exceeding the allowable time limits
  • Failing to take a 30-minute break after eight cumulative hours of driving
  • Failing to maintain a logbook that records duty status and equipment conditions
  • Falsifying logs, such as claiming they were spending their off-duty hours in the provided sleeper berth instead of declaring that they were operational at the time

HOS rules put limits on how long a driver can operate a vehicle and be on duty before they must take a break. Driver fatigue resulting from a HOS violation is considered negligent behavior.

Establishing HOS Violations as Part of Your Claim

causing serious accidents truck accidentsThe truck accident attorneys at Nash & Franciskato know how to identify when truck drivers have been driving in excess of the Hours of Service laws. We understand the regulations, how they apply in different situations and know how to determine if these rules have been violated.

Logbooks are used to keep track of when drivers are on duty, off duty and actually driving. We will thoroughly investigate your accident, which will include examining a driver’s logbook, plus other records such as:

  • Cell phone records
  • Credit and debit card transactions
  • Video from toll booth, security and intersection cameras
  • Gas receipts and toll tickets
  • The truck’s black box data records
  • Records from the truck driver’s logbook
  • Maintenance records at stops along the truck driver’s routes

An experienced truck accident lawyer can help to identify whether a driver violated HOS rules.

Have you been seriously injured in a trucking accident? Contact us at (877) 284-6600.


Our successful track record means we have proven results for our clients.

  • $1.1 million total settlement for a driver struck from behind by a tractor-trailer whose driver had violated federal regulations for driving and logging hours.


Questions? Contact our staff at (877) 284-6600.

Receive a Free Evaluation from Experienced Truck Accident Attorneys

attorney lawyer hours of service HOS FMCSA regulations truck accident lawyerTruck accidents due to fatigue can be devastating, leaving you suffering from severe physical and emotional injuries. Nash & Franciskato, a Kansas City based personal injury law firm, represents those injured in trucking accidents.

We know how to handle truck accident claims, taking the burden off your shoulders and enabling you to concentrate on what matters most: healing and recovering from the accident.

When you need to understand your legal options and the likelihood of obtaining compensation after a trucking accident, contact our experienced trucking accident attorneys for a free, no-obligation review of your case at (877) 284-6600.


Editor’s Note: This page was reviewed for content and accuracy on April 23, 2024 and was republished.

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