FMCSA proposes wording revision of HOS oilfield exemptions

Washington – The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has proposed changes to the wording of its hours-of-service final rule (.pdf file) to clear up confusion over which commercial motor vehicle operators qualify for the “oilfield operations” exemptions to the regulations.

According to FMCSA, only drivers who operate vehicles designed specifically for use in oilfields (such as heavy-coil vehicles, wire-line trucks and cement pumps), and who require extensive training to operate the equipment in addition to driving it, qualify for the exemptions. These drivers are allowed to use the HOS 24-hour restart provision to reset their weekly work hours unrestricted because they spend most of their workweek waiting onsite and not driving, the proposed revisions state.

Drivers who do not qualify include those who spend most of their workweek transporting supplies and waste to and from oilfield sites.

FMCSA is requesting public comment on whether the wording revisions clarify the exemptions.

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