Monthly Archives: April 2019

DOT Hours of Service: Understanding the Unique Compliance Requirements

Truck driving is difficult work, requiring intense concentration for long periods of time. In order to increase driver and traffic safety, and to reduce the risks of fatigue in the trucking industry, the Department of Transport introduced a set of regulations in 2011 known as Hours of Service.

 

Here’s what you need to know about these rules.

 

Who It Applies To

On a federal level, the Hours of Service (HoS) regulations apply to drivers of any property-carrying commercial motor vehicles weighing more than 10,000 pounds. It also applies to anyone driving vehicles that are designated for use in transporting hazardous materials if the amount is sufficient to require a placard.

 

two trucks driving on the highway

 

Drivers carrying more than nine passengers (for compensation) or 16 passengers (not for compensation) are also affected, although their HoS requirements are slightly different from the ones we’re listing here.

 

Drivers aren’t the only ones liable if found in breach of the rules. The companies who employ the drivers also face consequences in the case of any violation, even if they were unaware of it.

 

The Requirements

For property-carrying drivers, the DOT regulations on driving hours are:

 

  • They must only drive up to 11 hours within a 14-hour time frame.
  • They must have 10 consecutive hours off duty before their next driving period.
  • They must have at least 30 minutes uninterrupted rest every eight hours or less.
  • They must drive only up to 60 hours per seven consecutive days, or 70 hours per eight days if the company operates seven days a week.
  • They can reset the 60/70-hour limit with a rest of 34 consecutive hours or more.
  • They must log all hours of service on paper or electronically.

Why Are They Important?

While the DOT Hours of Service limits might seem strict, compliance is crucial for a number of different reasons. These include:

 

  • Avoiding fines – The DOT performs regular audits of drivers and their employers, and breaches can result in severe penalties.
  • Avoiding driver injury – Not only does an injured driver require compensation and short or long-term replacement, but the personal cost of an accident to the driver can be significant and debilitating.
  • Avoiding crashes – Our roads and highways are the lifeblood of the country. Great care should be taken to make sure they’re safe for everyone, at all times.

 

high speed car overtake trailer truck on a highway

 

Managing Fatigue

Even if you already follow the DOT Hours of Service regulations to the letter, there’s always more you can do. Your own fatigue management is also incredibly important to both reducing driver error and managing a productive fleet of drivers. Some of the ways this can be done is through improving diet and exercise, managing sleep properly, using monitoring technology, and recognizing hazards.

 

Providing the right working environment is also key. Even something as simple as a custom truck seat can make a big difference to the driver’s comfort, health, and, ultimately, tiredness.

 

Whether you manage a team of drivers or are a long-haul driver yourself, you need to do everything you can to manage fatigue. Shop at Suburban Seating & Safety and give yourself a break with the best semi-truck seats in the industry.

 

The Best Freightliner Truck Seats

Aftermarket semi-truck seats are among the most important considerations to ensure the needs of your fleet drivers. Whether searching for bus, construction vehicle, or commercial truck seats or freightliner truck seats, the goal should be to find high-quality, safe products. At Suburban Seating & Safety, you will find freightliner semi-truck seats designed for ergonomic comfort that can relieve pain, and which have a range of technologies to improve the driving experience.

 

semi truck going up hill on interstate highway

 

The truck replacement seats we offer include a Bostrom wide ride seat. One example is the Bostrom Wide Ride+Serta® High Back Truck Seat, available in leather or cloth in black, gray, and in multiple color combinations. The seat provides several comfort and technological features that make it stand out:

 

  • A 23-inch-wide seating surface.
  • Serta® Cool Action™ Gel, which provides support and cooling.
  • Seat heater or heat/ventilation option (only with leather seats).
  • BackCycler® system that inflates/deflates to prevent lumbar pain and stiffness.
  • Isolating scissor suspension with a vibration damper.
  • Optional front and rear cushion tilt and 16-inch long armrests.

 

In addition, we offer custom truck seats such as the Sierra Torsion 380. It has a mechanical suspension system, with a torsion bar allowing up to four inches of travel, and an ergonomic seat. The seat is flexible, also featuring an adjustable height of three inches, fore/aft adjustment of five inches, and operator weight adjustments from 110 to 275 pounds. An adjustable lumbar support and options such as a fixed or reclining back and padded armrests don’t hurt either.

 

truck interior and seating position

 

Why Our Truck Replacement Seats Are the Best

Suburban Seating & Safety offers the best semi-truck seats in regards to quality, comfort, and safety. We also provide the service parts you need direct from product manufacturers. Drivers no longer need to be distracted by back pain or seats that trap body heat and make them feel uncomfortable.

 

We stock the most ergonomic truck and auto replacement seats on the market, which can help prevent injury, reduce downtime, and make sure fleet drivers are protected during long hauls. Place an order online or call 844-727-7328 to learn more.

 

What You Need to Know About Being a Long Haul Trucker

Everyone knows the mystique of the long haul trucker. Perhaps you might have even seen the inside of a semi cab, with its vast array of switches and its custom truck seats, and thought it would be a fun job.

 

The truth is that long haul trucking isn’t for everyone. The job has a lot of perks, but it also requires mental and physical toughness. You also need to be comfortable with long stretches of having no one around to talk to.

 

truck driver in the cab of his commercial truck

 

Life on the Road Can Be Tough

Life as a long haul trucker can be lonely. Even if you’re in the best semi truck seat around, you’ll have to accept that enjoying the comfort of your own truck still means that you’ll be spending a lot of hours by yourself.

 

However, a lot of people like that lifestyle. They are invigorated by the prospect of an open road, and no one looking over their shoulder gives them a lot of freedom to determine what sights they can see on the way to their destination.

 

Long Haul Truckers Can Make a Very Good Living

If you’re with a company that pays fairly, you can make a decent living as a long-haul trucker. According to an April 19 ZipRecruiter survey, salaries for long haul truckers range from $44,500 a year to $105,000 a year, with the median being $71,817. It’s important to note, though, that how much you ultimately make will depend on your experience, how far you travel, and how much you want to work during the week.

 

18 wheeler driving into the rocky mountains

 

Long Haul Truckers Have to Haul Many Different Types of Cargo

A long haul trucker’s job can be a lot more exciting than a desk job. One reason for this is because of the variety of items that need hauling, such as:

 

  • Heavy machinery and equipment, which require a flatbed trailer with side kits, chains, and cords
  • Dry products, which require a large dry box van
  • Refrigerated items, which require a large box truck that can keep the items cold during the trip
  • Livestock, which requires a trailer with vents so the animals can breathe while being transported
  • Specialty items, which require a trailer capable of carrying items which are ungainly and heavy

 

In order to haul each type of item, you will need to know their limitations. You’ll need to keep an eye on the temperature of refrigerated items, for instance, and you face a time limitation when hauling livestock.

 

Make Your Long Hauls More Comfortable with Suburban Seating & Safety

Long haul truckers are a vital part of the trucking industry. If you want to be a long haul trucker, you’ll have to be resilient, independent, and not afraid to travel long distances.

 

You’ll also want to make sure you have the best semi truck seats, like the kind you can bet  Suburban Seating & Safety. Shop today to find the equipment that will make your new working environment comfortable.

 

What Are the Best Semi-Truck Seats to Sit On for Long Periods?

Riding on semi-truck seats for long hours every day can result in a sore back and behind. Truck drivers spend most of their workday sitting behind the wheel. The way they sit makes them prone to vibrations coming from the truck and the road. These vibrations can affect the lower back and body regions, leading to back, bottom, and leg pain.

 

Fortunately, truck drivers have options to help make their rides more comfortable. There are several brands of aftermarket truck seats to choose from, including these top brands:

 

Seats Inc. Off-Road Seats

Seats Inc. Off-Road Seats offer decent back and seat support with quality cushions that stand up to vibrations and rough road conditions both on road and off road. There is a wide range of options, depending on your needs, as well as seats for semi-trucks, forklifts, and other off-road vehicles.

 

Proper Vehicle Seat Adjustment

 

Bostrom Talladega T Series

The Bostrom Talladega T Series of truck seats features its Flex Support Cushion Systems, which is a feature designed to help reduce cushion compression and provide a smooth ride. The seats offer a continuous range of adjustments that are independent of the seat tilt adjustment, for preventing muscle stiffness and providing better lumbar support.

 

Knoedler Truck Seats

Knoedler truck seats feature their proprietary cushion design which uses their patented foam cushion system. This system is designed to help reduce pressure on the lower back, improve blood flow, reduce fatigue, raise concentration levels, and reduce risks of disc degeneration. The seats also offer flexible height adjustment.

 

National Commodore Series

National Commodore Series truck seats are designed using their unique triple chamber air lumbar support, along with their exclusive BackCycler® system to help reduce back pain and fatigue. National Commodore seats also have larger backs and cushions, as well as longer arms to give truck drivers more room to operate comfortably. The BackCycler® system relieves muscle and ligament strain, improves circulation, and reduces disc pressure and compression.

 

woman in a big rig talking on her CB radio to other truck drivers.

 

In addition to these top brands, heated and ventilated (cooled) seat options are also available with custom truck seats. For further help in finding the best semi-truck seats for your truck or off-road vehicle, please feel free to contact Suburban Seating & Safety at (844) SAS.SEAT (844-727-7328) today!