Last year, new regulations on the trucking industry came into effect that limit the time drivers can spend on the road. Among the key changes are a 12-hour reduction in drivers’ maximum workload per week, a mandatory 30-minute break during the first eight hours on shift, and more stringent guidelines placed on the time needed to lapse between work weeks.
Policymakers cited driver safety as the impetus for implementing the new rules, but benefits remain to be seen. As a result, insurance companies have yet to amend their rating processes to compensate for any decreased risk.
“It’s pretty much too early to tell. With new rules and regulations, it’s kind of funny – it’s a double-edged sword,” said Joe Hutelmyer, President and COO of Amwins Transportation Underwriters, Inc.
“There’s a lot more stress and strain on the logistics of the trucking companies because they have to learn how to deal with making sure people get their required time off, and yet, still get their loads where they’re supposed to be on a timely basis.”
However, Hutelmyer did note that he’s seen improvements in the realm of truck liability.
“With all the things that have been enacted over the past few years, insuring trucks for the liability side has gotten better,” Hutelmyer said.
Still, Hutelmyer predicts that it will be a while before the industry will know the full effects of the new regulations, and can addjust accordingly.
“To see the results of these, it’s going to take some time – it’ll probably be about three years before it pans out and we see if it’s really safer on the road because of the new rules and regulations that went into place.”
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