Crawford, Westerman, and Bishop Introduce Hours of Service Relief Legislation

Washington, DC – Earlier today Reps. Crawford (AR-01), Westerman (AR-04), and Bishop (GA-02) introduced H.R. 6178, The Honest Operators Undertake Road Safety (HOURS) Act, This bill provides our trucking industry with flexibility to accommodate their unique situations while maintaining safety on our roads. The trucking industry, with all of its varying and unique sectors, quite literally, is the economic engine of our great country, delivering the clothes we wear, the food we eat, and the medicine that we depend upon. 

Specifically, the HOURS Act delivers common-sense adjustments to provide safe and effective flexibility in Hours of Service regulations.  The bill offers narrow and reasonable changes that: harmonize short haul exemption rules, propose clarity for certain agricultural and livestock drivers and carriers, and remove irrelevant and redundant paperwork requirements.  The HOURS Act also clears the path forward for FMCSA to provide a rulemaking regarding split sleeper berth flexibility that could help to alleviate congestion, allowing a driver to plan their rest periods to avoid traffic.

Upon the introduction of the bill Crawford released the following statement:

“Those who carry the goods and agriculture products we rely on everyday should not be hindered by nonsensical regulations. The HOURS Act seeks narrow relief from requirements that have rendered our drivers’ operations less efficient. I look forward to working with my colleagues, the administration and the trucking industry to create an environment that enables the effective movement of goods while keeping our roads safe.”

Westerman said:

“American truckers are the lifeblood of our economy. While the recent implementation of the Electronic Logging Device mandate has helped make our roads and highways safer, it has highlighted the need to reform the Hours of Service Rule that is the driver behind many of the issues our truckers are facing today. In order to keep goods flowing throughout our country and protect American jobs, it is necessary to add flexibility to the current regulations in federal law. This legislation provides this needed flexibility, such as expanding the short haul exemption and providing uniform rules for certain agricultural and livestock drivers. I have heard the complaints and concerns from many constituents across the district and I am proud to be an original cosponsor on this legislation today. This bill protects small businesses throughout the Fourth District and keeps goods moving between towns, states, and across the country.”

Bishop said:

 “Our nation’s trucking industry is what connects our nation’s farms and ranches to consumers. Accordingly, I am pleased to be an original cosponsor of the HOURS Act, a bill that will provide much-needed relief to haulers of agricultural products and livestock, implement reasonable exceptions to the use of electronic logging devices (ELDs), and slash paperwork requirements for millions of U.S. truck drivers,” said Congressman Bishop. “This is a bipartisan effort to implement a number of commonsense reforms for the highly regulated trucking industry, and I am proud to support this initiative.”

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