If you own a fleet of delivery drivers, the chances are that you’ve been keeping on top with recent ruptures in break legislation. State laws, like California’s meal time break law, outline that drivers should have a thirty-minute break for every five hours they spend on the road.
Federal law, however, states that drivers should spend eleven out of fourteen hours on the road, with a ten-hour break between shifts. All of which must now be logged with installed truck trackers. The news has been rife with crossovers in the legislation, leaving employers and truck drivers confused about what they should be doing.
Whether you follow Federal or state laws, though, there’s one clear message in rules like these. Everything depends on your truckers getting decent breaks. If you’ve been slack in this area until now or have failed to install trackers, you stand to find yourself in trouble from both a business and legal perspective.
Rules like these can be irritating for apparent reasons. Even truckers paid by the mile have attempted to argue against these changes. But, before you listen to them and do things your way, consider the following reasons why regular breaks are essential for employees on the road.
To protect your company
At the very least, regular driver breaks can protect your company. For one, this ensures drivers are capable of shipping your products safely at all times. They’ll always be alert behind the wheel and able to unload vans without any wobbles.
You should also find that well-rested drivers are better able to deal with customers. They’ll be fresher and generally more friendly than they would if they were exhausted after hours without a break.
To protect your drivers
Though drivers may be keen to work through their breaks, getting strict here can also protect them. Health and safety matters, after all, even when employees are out and about. Ensuring they get the breaks they should helps them stay fit and healthy.
Given that 1 in 10 deaths on U.S. highways involve large trucks, breaks here also keep your drivers safe from a legal standpoint. While some of the fall out of an accident would land on your shoulders, your drivers would also end up on the wrong end of a truck accident lawyer. If that happened, they could face penalties or even prison time.
None of which needs to happen if they take proper breaks to keep reactions quick through the day.
To protect yourself
It’s also worth noting that taking action can protect you. As mentioned, an accident from one of your drivers can come back to bite you, especially if you’re found in breach of new federal tracking laws. In some cases, business owners face harsher punishments than drivers themselves.
By keeping on top, you also ensure you’re adhering to employment regulations. That can keep a team under your control for many years to come.
Like it or not, then, it’s about time you started tracking those trucker breaks at last.
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