x

WNEP.com | News, Weather & Sports from WNEP-TV — Proud to Serve Northeastern and Central Pennsylvania

FMCSA lifts hours-of-service law for some tractor-trailer drivers

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration says truck drivers carrying certain goods will temporarily not have to follow the hours-of-service laws.

JACKSON TOWNSHIP, Pa. — Busy times are ahead for some tractor-trailer drivers.

Because of the Coronavirus, the U.S. Department of Transportation's Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration issued a national emergency declaration lifting hours-of-service regulations to commercial vehicle drivers who are carrying things like food and medical supplies.

"I don't think it's necessary. I really don't. I mean, we are out here 70 hours a week already," said John Kerekes, Truck Driver.

Truck drivers normally can't spend more than 11 hours a day on the road without taking a break.

This declaration is the first time the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has issued a nation-wide relief.

"You all need us just like we need everyone else, so why do you all think now, 'oh let's go do this, or you all can run 16 hours a day and then you have to take 30 minutes and sleep 8.' Well, you should have left us on paper logs, and we would never have to deal with this," said Marshal Walser, Truck Driver.

Now to ensure safety, the emergency declaration says once drivers make their deliveries, they must take 8 to 10 hours off the road.

Lydell Davis is hauling exotic plants right now.  

He knows that in a few days, he will start moving other essential supplies like food for emergency restocking of stores or medical supplies like masks, gloves, and hand sanitizer.

He just isn't sure for how long.

"I'm not nervous; it's more of what is going to go on. We really don't know if they are going to shut us down as well because they are shutting everything else down. We don't know if we are going to go on quarantine," said Lydell Davis, Truck Driver.

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, officials will continue to monitor the virus outbreak and provide new information as it comes in.