In late December 2020, Congress passed, and President Trump signed a long-awaited $900 billion COVID relief package that also included $1.4 trillion to fund the federal government through September 2021. Bills like this typically come with a ‘Committee Report’ that explains various sections of the bill and directs federal agencies to do certain things with the funding provided.

In this case, the Committee report directed the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration to analyze the September 2020 HOS rule changes’ real-world effects. Congress directed FMCSA to analyze safety data including, but not limited to, the number of crashes, crash type, number of fatalities categorized by occupant type, number of serious injuries, the large truck crash involvement rate, and the time of day and on what type of roadway the accident occurred.

FMCSA was directed to compare this data from the years prior to the enactment of the September 2020 HOS rule with the data collected after the implementation of the HOS changes to determine any correlations.

Congress was so interested in learning how the more flexible HOS rules are impacting driver and highway safety they also directed FMCSA to report the results annually in their Congressional budget request. STC is betting the Biden Administration-led DOT will perform an analysis more rigorous than the one required by Congress.