The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is the federal agency responsible for regulating the trucking industry. Over the years, the FMCSA has enacted a wide range of measures to ensure the safety of truckers and others on the roadway. Among these are the hours-of-service (HOS) regulations, which set forth the maximum drive times and minimum rest periods for interstate truckers.
The hours-of-service rules are intended to reduce the fatigue of truckers on the highway. Although relatively straightforward, the rules can be complex for those new to them. For example, under the current HOS rules semi operators may not drive their trucks after 60 hours on duty in seven consecutive days (or 70 hours on duty eight consecutive days). The numbers reset after a 34 hour rest period, during which the trucker must be completely off-duty.