Joe DeLorenzo, Director of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s office of compliance and enforcement said at MATS that a few months ago, FMCSA published a new set of proposed guidance that would relax the definition of personal conveyance, the off-duty period after drivers have reached their 11-hour driving time limit. He said the old guidance required drivers to leave their trailers behind before moving their trucks on off-duty time.
“The way the new guidance reads is that it doesn’t matter,” he said. “The direction we’re trying to move in with personal conveyance is not what’s on the vehicle, not whether you have a trailer or not, it’s about what is the purpose of the movement.”
If a driver is moving in a direction to advance the load and it’s related to the transportation operation, it’s not a legitimate personal conveyance, DeLorenzo said.
“If you’re operating your vehicle for personal purposes unrelated to the transportation of the load, then that can be considered off-duty time,” he said.
There is no limit as to how far a driver can go or how long on legitimate personal conveyance time, DeLorenzo told in Listening Session at MATS, Louisville, KY truck show.
DeLorenzo said the agency does have the authority to adjust the 14-hour maximum workday for drivers. Although the 14-hour driver workday limit has been in force since 2005, DeLorenzo said the controversy was not new.