Advocates for truck safety are working to improve the standards for truck drivers. They hope to put a cap on the number of hours truck drivers work each week.
The hope is to pass a bill to cap the hours out to 73 per week, which is about 30 hours more than the average American works. The language of the bill has not been released, however it is said that the American Trucking Associations (ATA), an interest lobbying group, is involved with the bill. In 2014, the ATA obtained the Senator of Maine, Susan Collins to write legislation for the bill. This bill required truck drivers to get two nights of sleep and capped their hours at 70 per week. The industry disputed these new requirements and stated that the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration must write rules in line with the study that required truck drivers to get two nights of sleep in a row as part of their mandated weekly 34 hour break. If the bill was not based on the study, the old rules will be brought back. However, there lies some ambiguity as to which old rules they would revert to and the ATA believes the 73 hour cap will address this confusion. Although the language of the bill has not been released, the Senate plans to reset their work weeks by a 34 hour off period and not allowing truck drivers to work more than 73 hours.
It is essential that truck drivers are able to get the rest they need to prevent them from falling asleep at the wheel and potentially causing truck accidents. The standards of the ATA will only serve as a detrimental factor in regards to the safety of truck drivers.