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The 11/14 Hour Truck Driving Rule

Aug
23,
2008
32

Recently I received an e-mail asking me to explain the “very confusing” 11/14 hour truck driving rule. As you know, this is the rule which tells the driver how many hours he/she may work, when to break, how long to break, and how many hours of  driving that he/she may drive during a 24 hour period.

Here is my reply to her that I would like to post for all new drivers:

This is a real simple rule that sometimes people can make harder than it really is….me included, when it first came out. In a nutshell…it simply states that you cannot “work” more than 14 hours in a 24 hour period…and cannot drive more than 11 hours in a 24 hour period, without taking a 10 hour break.

“Work” means the same as “on duty”…As soon as you start your pre-trip, you are on duty….you have 14 hours to be “on duty” from that moment on, before you are required to shut down for your 10 hour break.

So, if you start your pre-trip at 6 AM, you have to be stopped, shut down, done! by 8 PM. Your on duty “work” includes, pre-tripping, post tripping, driving, unloading, loading, waiting time, stopping for a meal, bathroom break, stopping to make a phone call…ANYTHING you are doing between the pre-trip and post trip….this is your 14 hours you have to complete your day’s work.

Example : Let’s say you start your pre-trip at 10 AM. and you drive over to the shipper to get loaded and you get there at 10:30 AM, and they tell you it will take about 5 hours to get loaded. You are finally loaded at 3:30 PM. You now only have until midnight to drive or “whatever”, before you must shut down for the 10 hour break. You will be completely legal because you shut down at midnight, which is 14 hours (10 AM to Midnight)…and you only drove 9 hours (10 AM to 10:30 AM, and 3:30 PM to Midnight)…even though you are 2 hours under the 11 hour driving rule, the 14 hour rule beat you to the punch because of the waiting time the shipper placed on you.

Just remember, whatever time you start the day on your log, you have to be completely shut down (break), within 14 hours. Now, if you start your pretrip at 10 AM, arrive at shipper at 10:30 AM, and are loaded by 11 AM, you can drive until 9:30 PM – (11 hour rule – 10-10:30, 11-9:30), ….even though 14 hours is midnight (10 AM to midnite), the 11 hour rule beat you to the punch…you can still be on duty through midnight, like waiting to get unloaded, calling dispatch, repairing a trailer tire…etc., you JUST CAN’T DRIVE anymore.

After 14 hours you should be doing only one thing : on a 10 hour break. Just because you hit 11 hours of driving, you can still be doing work-related duties, as long as you are not driving…AND…once you hit the 14 hour spot…you must be shut down, totally, and be on your 10 hour break.

Remember two things :

1. Be shut down (on your break) within 14 hours of starting your log.

2. Within that 14 hours, make sure you have not driven more than 11 hours.

NOW! There is also the 34 hour rule! But this is easy…if you are off duty for at least 34 hours, all your hours beforehand are “erased” and you can start “clean” with another 70 hours. There is talk about doing away with this rule, but for now, it is still on the books.

UPDATE TO THIS POST:  7-20-09

Since I am constantly receiving emails from those who only wish to criticize and attempt to prove something to themselves, I would like to  address a recent email I received:

Here is the email I just received:

He wrote:

“I read, The 11/14 Hour Truck Driving Rule", it is incorrect. You state that after your 14th consecutive hour on duty you must be off duty or in the sleeper berth, not true. The law states a driver must not drive after his 14th hour on duty, nothing about working. Any work as  unloading, post trip, fueling are fine to do after your 14th hour. Please make sure you know the law prior to acting like an authority. Thanks.”

Now,  if  this guy had really read the post, then he would have seen the following paragraph within this post:

“Just remember, whatever time you start the day on your log, you have to be completely shut down (break), within 14 hours. Now, if you start your pretrip at 10 AM, arrive at shipper at 10:30 AM, and are loaded by 11 AM, you can drive until 9:30 PM – (11 hour rule – 10-10:30, 11-9:30), ….even though 14 hours is midnight (10 AM to midnite), the 11 hour rule beat you to the punch…you can still be on duty through midnight, like waiting to get unloaded, calling dispatch, repairing a trailer tire…etc., you JUST CAN’T DRIVE anymore.”

Furthermore, this guy would have seen my previous comment to another, more professional poster … here’s my previous posted comment:

Yes, you are correct.  You are referring to Reg. 395 (d) –

D. 14-HOUR DUTY PERIOD
D-1. May a driver be on duty for more than 14 consecutive hours?

Yes. A driver may remain on duty for more than 14 hours; however, the driver of a property-carrying CMV cannot drive after the 14th hour after coming on duty. Also, the additional on-duty time will be counted toward the 60/70-hour on-duty limit. But, as you mentioned, MOST companies require you to be shut down by the 14th hour. Every company I’ve ever worked for, even now, require you to be completely done by the 14th hour. So that is why I explained it this way. With a former company I was driving for, I did go over the 14 hours, legally….but I was still called in by the log and safety dept. Even though I explained to them what I did was legal, I was still “slapped” on the hand for doing it! LOL … but again, you are right….it is just that most companies want you “shut down” by the 14th hour……thanks for your post…..I appreciate it!

Allen — Posted on: 10-22-2008

So I will make this response a permanent part of this post, so hopefully I can STOP receiving such rude and hateful emails from people such as this.  Also, my intentions are NOT to come off as an “authority” but just to try and help newcomers to the industry. Whatever creates such hate in people, I have no idea …  I would suggest that people such as this guy  fully read my posts before attacking me for whatever their agenda’s are.  Maybe they just can’t read very well or they have trouble comprehending?

Allen Smith

© 2008 – 2009, Allen Smith. All rights reserved.

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By: Allen Smith

Allen Smith is a 34 year veteran ( started at an early age in family moving business) of the trucking industry, many of those years spent over the road. He has been an owner operator, company driver, operations manager, and has owned and operated a moving company, taking many of the long haul moves himself when needed. One thing though that most will say is that the reason and motivation behind the author, Allen Smith, is the fact he is driven by the desire to help others succeed within an industry where injustice, unrewarded sacrifice, and lack of respect and recognition exists. As you read many of the blog posts you’ll discover that he is opinionated and speaks openly about the ongoing issues of the trucking industry. He supports other fellow advocates who are also stepping up to the plate to help those who are in need of honesty, guidance and direction. The list of supporters and like minded people grows daily and their ability to network together and share their thoughts and ideas for the betterment of others within trucking, has allowed the forward movement of... "Raising the standards of the trucking industry"

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32 Responses to The 11/14 Hour Truck Driving Rule. - Post a Comment

  1. LEH

    O.k., how about a bit more explanation for those of us that team and want to utilize the 8/2 split. And yes I am a new driver and am trying to make the 11/14 rule much more difficult than it probably is. : )

  2. miselly

    the information really helped me, and I understand the 11 hr. rule now, as well as the 14, but what still confuses me is if he/she (an example) off duty 2 hrs, on for 5,drive for 3 off for 3, on for 3, drive for 3, on for 2, sleep for 2, drive for 1)…He starts duty at 2am, ends at 10am, back on at 1pm, until 9pm, and drives that last hr. now I know there are “no breaks”, but would you count the 17 hrs, all together even though he took a break in between?
    and another one, he starts at midnight and drives till 3am, goes on duty till 6am goes off duty from 6-11 at11am he goes on duty for 1 hr. and goes off duty for another 5 hrs, on for 4 and drives the last 3 of the day, the 2 5hr. breaks are those considered combination? or nb’s? thanks

  3. admin

    Hi, miselly :

    In order to utillize the sleeper birth for your 10 hour breaks, you must have a consecutive 10 hour break in the sleeper, or a 2 session break using off duty/sleeper that adds up to a consecutive 10 hours.

    Here’s what the Reg’s have to state :

    “CMV drivers using the sleeper berth provision must take at least 8 consecutive hours in the sleeper berth, plus 2 consecutive hours either in the sleeper berth, off duty, or any combination of the two.”

    The key, here being….consecutive hours…i.e. – 2 hours off duty, then 8 hours in sleeper (all as a straight line, unbroken.)

    Allen

  4. Eric

    This is a very confusing subject. After reading government websites on the matter I was left more confused than before I read it. It was my understanding however, that the 11 hour drive time meant from the time you start driving you must stop driving after 11 hours, regardless of breaks or down time. This is further confused by the local driver rules if you are within 100-150 miles of home office. I drive for a company that stays withing the state. Some runs are within 150 miles but some runs go over.

  5. Rob Morin

    8 / 2 hour rule
    My CDL class had a different take on the split 08 / 02 rule. Granted, they must be 8 hrs consecutive and the two hours must ALSO be consecutive but it does not state that they must be “straight line” or back to back. If you split up the two “rest periods” within the 14 hour window, you start a second 14 day period. You still have to complete the 10 hours of rest within the first 14 hour period and you will need to complete the second 14 hour period with at least an additional 10 hours of rest but again, it can be split with 8 hours off (then drive or on duty) followed by at least two more consecutive hours in the sleeper birth.
    It makes it easy to be in violation if you don;t keep VERY close time to the 11 hour driving period (within each 14 hour “day’) as well as keeping close tabs as to which “day” you’re working on. It is SO much less confusing to just take a 10 hour break.

  6. MCC

    In a ‘corner’ of Werner’s website I found an interesting explanation of how you could THEORETICALLY repeat the 20 HOUR sequence: DRIVE 5HRS, REST 2HRS, DRIVE 5HRS, SLEEP 8 HRS, indefinitely until you ran out of hours for the week [70 or 80]. Sounds like a [very tiring] way to defeat the purpose of the HOS rules.

  7. John Burrell

    In your opinion, can u please tell me 3 of the best companies to start off working for being a rookie driver. I dont want to make a mistake by going with a company that doesnt care for its drivers. Your feedback will be greatly appreciated.

  8. OuttaLuck

    There is a discrepancy in this explanation of the 14 hour rule. For most OTR truck drivers, after the 14th hour, your must be shut down, because you’re mostly either loading/unloading, or driving.

    BUT!!!!!!

    There is NOTHING in the D.O.T. regulations that say that you can not log over 14 hours, what it DOES say is that a driver must not drive after the 14th hour after coming on duty with out 10 consecutive hours off-duty.

  9. admin

    Hi OuttaLuck…

    Yes, you are correct. You are referring to Reg. 395 (d) –

    D. 14-HOUR DUTY PERIOD

    D-1. May a driver be on duty for more than 14 consecutive hours?
    Yes. A driver may remain on duty for more than 14 hours; however, the driver of a property-carrying CMV cannot drive after the 14th hour after coming on duty. Also, the additional on-duty time will be counted toward the 60/70-hour on-duty limit.

    But, as you mentioned, MOST companies require you to be shut down by the 14th hour. Every company I’ve ever worked for, even now, require you to be completely done by the 14th hour. So that is why I explained it this way. With a former company I was driving for, I did go over the 14 hours, legally….but I was still called in by the log and safety dept. Even though I explained to them what I did was legal, I was still “slapped” on the hand for doing it! LOL …. but again, you are right….it is just that most companies want you “shut down” by the 14th hour……thanks for your post…..I appreciate it!

    Allen

  10. George

    You have explained the hours in service. However the milage allowed is not explained. Could you elaborate on tis subject.
    George

  11. Allen Smith

    Hi George,

    The mileage allowed is how ever many miles you can get in legally within the time limit. Companies vary, but most want you to average around 62 MPH. Check with your company’s safety dept. and/or log dept. to see what MPH they want your logs to average. If they want you to average, let’s say, 64 MPH, then the most miles you could drive in an 11 hour period would be…704….but your company will let you know what they want your MPH average to be.

    Thanks,
    Allen

  12. Allen Smith

    For Eric:

    Yes, you must stop driving after the 11th hour of “driving.” You can still be on duty, just can’t drive. Also, legally, Also, you are referring to the “short haul” provision concerning the 150 mile radius. Regualtions shows that this applies to those vehicles not requiring a CDL license. It is also up to the individual company policy whether or not they want you to provide a log or not.

  13. Don C

    For Admin:

    We have 600 mi. from base to our 1st customer–split in 2 segments 500 mi. day 1 then 100 mi. day 2 (we deliver live fish so customers want product delivered in morning). With PTI, we are on-duty for 9 hrs.only then we are off-duty and in a hotel room. Can we begin on-duty driving in less than 10 hrs? Example: 9 hrs driving, .25 PTI arrive hotel at 9 pm. Can we legally begin driving at 6 am the next day for 2 hrs?

  14. Tom Worthington

    Thank you for all your help,especially to the NewBees.
    I am presently working for Flagler Tech Center in
    Flagler Beach Fl. as an CDL Instructor.
    I have many stories about companies using the NewBees, (Not treating them fairly) using them!
    I just want my students to be treated fairly , and be able
    to be sucessfull in Trucking!

  15. Allen Smith

    Don C

    Looking at your post again, I had to re-do my answer:

    The rules state that you cannot drive beyond the 14 hour after coming on duty….the 9 hours you take off in the hotel, counts against the 14 hours….so if you’re going on duty at 12 noon then your 14 hours is up at 2 AM….shutting down at 9 PM at the hotel….then you cannot start driving again until – 12 noon.

    Sorry about the mistake…this is what happens when I try to answer technical questions with very little sleep or rest.

    Allen

  16. Allen Smith

    Welcome Tom! Thanks for posting, and we look forward to hearing from you more often! We are all about information….I’m sure students and new drivers will appreciate any posts/comments you can provide! Thanks again,
    Allen

  17. rick

    I have just graduated cdl school.
    I am starting in april on my first trucking job.
    I know that I must use previous seven days in my log book.
    but not sure what to do with the time that i am not employed .do i even need to keep a record of my time off?

  18. william vanderberry

    Does personal time driving to get to work in personal vehicle counts towards driving within that 24 hour period.

  19. Allen Smith

    Hi Rick: Yes….you will have to have a log for each day of the month….even for your days off….you do not have to log them one day at a time….you can put them all together…such as…off duty – 03/15 – 03/25 – 2009 ……..

  20. Allen Smith

    Hello William: Your time begins when you start your pre trip or begin work……..Allen

  21. Brady

    i understand all of the 11/14hr rule and 70hr rule. what i dont understand and mabey im just an idiot but what i dont understand is, this week i only ran 40 hours, now i am off for 1.5 days so when i start driving again do i still only have 30 hours to work with or do i get to add another 14 hours for every day off. I hope this question makes sense

  22. Allen Smith

    Hi Brady: If you will have 1.5 days off, then you will utilize the 34 hour rule – which will automatically “reset” your hours to 70….Allen

  23. Brady

    thank you i knew i was trying to make it more complicated than i needed to

  24. steve orsini

    are public works employees that require a class b cdl
    exempt from the 11/14 and driver physicals every 2 years rules? can they force us out to plow 20- 30 hours straight without having 8 hours off to sleep. my town follows the drug and alcohol testing but does not follow the dot physical laws how do they get away with this?

  25. Bo

    I am a team driver. My Co-driver and I have each been put in a situation by the DOT to surrender the other drivers log book and licences to them while they are in the bunk asleep. Is this legal? I thought unless there was an emergency or the truck was causing a problem where it was parked, nobody was autherised to disturb that driver.

  26. Allen Smith

    There are various exemptions for certain type of drivers where the employer states that their drivers work consists of more than just driving, including utility workers. These exemptions can be found from the FMCSA website.

  27. Allen Smith

    Any law enforcement officer may inspect a driver(s) logbook at any time.

  28. chris

    lets say you had 10 hours off duty now your working you’re now in the 14 hour rule you don’t drive at all but work and than you sleep in the berth for 9 hours still within the 14 hour rule, does that mean you’re allowed to drive again for another 11 hours and the 14 hour rule starts again?

  29. [...] Originally Posted by Casey Pelous From time to time the regulatory process does do some dumb stuff. I just learned about some pending regulations for trucking. Some safety groups want to shorten drivers' days to cut down on fatigued driving and have made enough of a stink that it looks like the Feds will change the rules. I mean, who wants to vote "aye" on fatigued driving, right? Now if you were a truck driver getting paid by the mile and they shortened your work day, what would you do? Huh? Did you say "drive faster"? But …. but …. speeding causes way more accidents than fatigued driving! Truckers are already heavily regulated as to the number of hours they can drive, how long they have to take a break from the road… The 11/14 hour Truck Driving Rule | AskTheTrucker [...]

  30. Peterson

    I would like to know how many hours i can drive

  31. bill balaz

    thanks… this shit wasn’t explained very well to me… or maybe i just didn’t understand.. i’ll go to the reg to get more info thanks again

  32. Mike

    the daily log ends at midnight. what/how do i enter the location of where i was at midnight if im still driving?

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