Stringent Hours of Service Rules on the horizon for Mexican Truckers

Over the Road Mexican truckers will have new restrictions on driving hours, as fatigue is a major cause of motor vehicle accidents in Mexico’s highway system according to the SCT.

Preliminary draft NOM-SCT-2-087-2017, which is in the review stage and expected to be ready in August, will force drivers to rest for 30 minutes, after driving for five consecutive hours .

In the case of a journey that requires more than 10 hours of driving, the motor carriers  must assign two drivers on the route, or the operator must rest eight consecutive hours  before continuing the journey. These are some of the new rules that were announced during the XVII National Forum of Transport of Goods, organized by the National Association of Private Transport (ANTP) in Playa del Carmen.

The specifics of the new rule are as outlined below

  •  Every driver should take a 30-minute break when: a) He has driven up to five continuous hours, or; This pause can be distributed during a period of five and a half hours according to the conditions of the trip.
  • The pause periods, in no case can be accumulated.
  • During the entire driving time, the driver must carry the Service Hours Log book and display it to the competent authority when it is requested; Which must be of personal and non-transferable use. The registration of the data of the logbook will be done in printed or electronic formats.
  •  Permission holders may take advantage of the technological devices available in order to comply with the provisions of this regulation, such as tachograph or other electronic applications.
  • The permit holder of the passenger transport and tourism is obliged to consider a second driver when: a) The travel time between the point of origin and the final destination exceeds 9 hours. B) In case of not having a second driver, he must adhere to the maximum hours of service and periods of rest stipulated in this Standard.
  •  In the case of freight transport, travel must be organized taking into account the following: a) For trips exceeding 10 hours, the driver must have a pause of not less than 8 continuous hours, without prejudice to comply with the minimum pauses established in Present draft Standard.

In other words, Mexico is adopting the HOS standard the US had for decades with the inclusion of a sticker 30 minute break requirement.

Previous to this, Mexico’s HOS laws were codified in the Labor laws of the country. This moves them into the jurisdiction of the SCT where they should be.

Road accidents in Mexico have resulted in 16,500 lives lost and cost about $150 million pesos ($8,236,000.00 use) a year, which represents 1.7% of GDP, according to data from the Technical Secretariat of the National Council for Accident Prevention. (Numbers not verified)

The Ministry of Communications and Transportation (SCT) conducted a survey among federal trucking operators, which found that 52% drive more than nine hours a day and 26% exceed 14 hours, while in the United States they do not exceed a maximum of Eight hours a day, with a mandatory rest of 30 minutes, before driving and additional 3 hours., and in Canada, where HOS laws are more liberal, there is a driving period of 13 hours, with a minimum of 10 hours of rest.

“It has been proven that 80% of road accidents are due to the human factor, mainly fatigue. By ensuring that driving times are adequate and that operators can rest, and that they are in physical and mental fitness to drive, we will be significantly reducing the number of accidents, “said Adolfo Elim Luviano Heredia, head of the Directorate General of Autotransporte Federal, dependence of the SCT.

The bases of the new rule indicate that the driver must keep a log of hours of service and show it to the authorities when it is required. Each log will be for personal and non-transferable use.

The rule also authorizes the implementation of e-logs.

“We are totally in favor of the implementation of this standard,” said Alex Theissen, president of the ANTP, which groups 120 of the country’s top companies. “It will not be perfect, but it’s a step forward and it will help us all on the issue of security,” he said.

To ensure compliance with the standard, there will be random on the road through the federal police, said the director of the Federal Autotransporte.

This post is part of the thread: Mexico Trucking – an ongoing story on this site. View the thread timeline for more context on this post.