Truck drivers in North Carolina may be aware of the rules and regulations regarding working hours, which were established by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration or FMCSA in order to improve safety on the highways. The goal is to ensure that drivers on the highways are not fatigued because of extended working hours because that is one major contributing factor in the number of truck accidents that occur on the highways. There may be some trucking companies that push their drivers beyond the limit without understanding the threat that fatigued drivers pose to other motorists and pedestrians on the road.
Reports suggest that almost 4,000 people die annually in accidents involving trucks. Many truck drivers have also died in such accidents. The accident rates prompted the FMCSA to bring changes to the hours of service rule for truck drivers. Previously, drivers were allowed to take a 30-minute break within the first eight hours of duty and there was a 34-hour rest period known as a restart. According to the new rule, the drivers were allowed to use the restart period once every seven days, and they were also allowed to take two breaks between 1 and 5 a.m. to ensure that they remain alert before embarking on another heavy workweek.