Lawmaker pushing for off-duty breaks

| 2/11/2005

Off-duty breaks could be added to the current hours-of-service rule if an Arkansas lawmaker’s amendment makes it into law.

U.S. Rep. John Boozman, R-AR, introduced legislation would allow truck drivers to take up to two hours of off-duty time during their daily tour of duty.

Last year, Boozman presented several ideas as to how FMCSA could improve the hours-of-service rule. He proposed these ideas by writing letters to FMCSA and as well as introducing an amendment to the highway bill, according to a press release from the representative’s office.

Boozman withdrew his amendment after securing a promise from the Transportation Committee Chairman that they would continue working on the issue during the conference committee.

Last year, the committee did not finish its work, and the highway bill was not finalized. Therefore, Boozman introduced this legislation Feb. 8 in an effort to push the Transportation Committee to revisit the issue as they consider the highway bill, according to the release.

Boozman’s home district includes northwest Arkansas – where sizeable private fleets such as Wal-Mart and Tyson Foods are based.