The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is proposing to clarify that motor carriers have “the duty” to verify accuracy of drivers' hours of service (HOS) and records of duty status (RODS), according to a supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking published November 3 in the Federal Register. This obligation also would extend the HOS and RODS of independent drivers or owner-operators while driving for motor carriers.
Motor carriers would ensure that each driver collects and submits to the employing motor carrier all supporting documents with the RODS, and ensure all motor carriers know of the requirement to maintain supporting documents in a method that allows cross-reference to the RODS.
The supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking (49 CFR Parts 379, 381, 385, 390, and 395) also proposes a supporting document-based, self-monitoring system that would be the carriers' primary method for ensuring compliance with HOS regulations.
In recognition of developing technologies, the FMCSA proposes to permit use of electronic documents as a supplement to, and in certain circumstances in lieu of, paper supporting documents.
Comments on the proposal must be received by Jan 3, 2005.