Alberta stays off federal HOS bandwagon — for now

EDMONTON — Alberta will not be joining the rest of the country in mirroring new hours-of-service rules that take affect in the New Year.

Despite the change in the federal regulation, the Alberta government says it “will not be making any changes at this time” to the provincial Drivers’ Hours of Service Regulation, which governs carriers that operate solely within Alberta.

The province will continue to enforce current HOS rules for provincial truckers until a new regulation is developed following further consultation with industry stakeholders.

“The province encourages a collaborative approach to developing government policy and regulations,” said Ty Lund, minister of Infrastructure and Transportation. “To ensure proposed changes to Alberta’s commercial hours of service regulation meet the need to manage driver fatigue and the operational needs of operators, additional consultation with industry is necessary.”

Under the new federal rules, drivers will further limit the number of hours they can operate in a 24-hour day. They will not be allowed to drive after having accumulated 13 hours of driving time or 14 hours of on-duty time, including driving, in a day. The Minimum off-duty time therefore increases from 8 to 10 hours per day. Federally-regulated drivers may reset their hours after 36 or 72 consecutive hours off duty.

The current provincial rules limit driving time to 16 hours in a 24-hour period and on-duty time to 16 hours a day, and require a minimum of eight hours off-duty time.

All provinces including Alberta will be employing a six-month education enforcement period to provide an opportunity for drivers and carriers to learn the new federal rules and adjust their operations accordingly.

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