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Thursday, February 2, 2023

FMCSA May Study Effects Of Excessive Commuting On Truckers

 

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is seeking comment on a potential survey to inquire about driver commuting practices to fulfill a requirement of the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act of 2015.

The survey proposed is seeking to gather information on the prevalence of excessive driver commuting in the commercial motor vehicle industry, including the number and percentage of drivers who commute; the distances traveled, time zones crossed, time spent commuting, and methods of transportation used; research on the impact of excessive commuting on safety and CMV driver fatigue; and the commuting practices of CMV drivers and policies of motor carriers.

The agency is defining as excessive any commuting to work that exceeds 150 minutes.

FMCSA expressed concern over the issue because “in the past two decades, as the number of workers has increased and the distance to affordable housing has also increased in most metropolitan areas, commuting times have increased in the United States.”

As Background, FMCSA states “Long commuting times can adversely affect commercial motor vehicle drivers in multiple ways, for example:

• Compromising off-duty time. Long commuting times can reduce a driver’s available off-duty time for sleep and personal activities. This can lead to excessive fatigue while on duty, creating safety concerns for both the CMV driver and other drivers on the roads.

• Impacting driver health. A recent study was conducted that monitored 4,297 adults from 12 metropolitan Texas counties. In this region, 90 percent of people commute to work. The study found that the drivers who have long commuting times were more likely to have poor cardiovascular health and be less physically fit.[2] This study showed that people who commute long distances to work weigh more, are less physically active, and have higher blood pressure.