Do Your Drivers Have Second Jobs?

This is one of those questions where many employers want to use the attitude of “don’t ask, don’t tell,” but that is not how DOT will handle it. DOT will hold the motor carrier responsible for all hours worked by the driver, whether it is at your business or any other job they may work (with selected exemptions for firefighters and military time).

I have selected several DOT interpretations (specific questions and answers) that are directed to this question of a second job by a driver.

Must nontransportation-related work for a motor carrier be recorded as on-duty time? (395.2, question 11)
Yes. All work for a motor carrier, whether compensated or not, must be recorded as on-duty time. The term “work” as used in the definition of “on-duty time” in §395.2 of the FMCSRs is not limited to driving or other nontransportation-related employment.

What is the liability of a motor carrier for hours of service violations? (395.3, question 7)
The carrier is liable for violations of the hours of service regulations if it had or should have had the means by which to detect the violations. Liability under the FMCSRs does not depend upon actual knowledge of the violations.

Are carriers liable for the actions of their employees even though the carrier contends that it did not require or permit the violations to occur? (395.3, question 8 )
Yes. Carriers are liable for the actions of their employees. Neither intent to commit, nor actual knowledge of, a violation is a necessary element of that liability. Carriers “permit” violations of the hours of service regulations by their employees if they fail to have in place management systems that effectively prevent such violations.

Is a driver who works for a motor carrier on an occasional basis and who is regularly employed by a non-motor carrier entity required to submit either records of duty status or a signed statement regarding the hours of service for all on-duty time as “on-duty time” as defined by §395.2? (395.8, question 11)
Yes.

I’ve had people ask my opinion on how to handle and record these second job hours for their drivers. My best suggestion is to have the driver complete a driver log and list all the hours for their work, and then have the driver list the hours worked for others on the same log. Have the driver sign and submit the log to you for the six-month retention period. This will allow you to monitor the hours and ensure that the driver does not violate any of the hours of service rules. You should pay particular attention to the required 10 hours off between work cycles and that they don’t exceed 60 hours in seven days and get behind the wheel of a commercial motor vehicle.

Gases and Welding Distributors Association
Meet the Author
GAWDA DOT & Homeland Security Consultant Michael Dodd is president of MLD Safety Associates in Poplar Bluff, Missouri. Members can reach him at (573) 785-5111 and at mldsafety@hotmail.com.