Guide to the Sleeper Berth Provision in the United States

Jun 29, 2022

Share

The transportation business means having to deal with the unexpected. Drivers regularly face delays that are out of their control and impede the progress of their trip.

Schedules are governed by a set of hours of service rules that must be followed. Drivers have a 14-hour window in which to drive a maximum of 11 hours and they must take a 30-minute break after 8 hours of driving. A new work shift can begin after 10 consecutive hours of rest.

To deal with unexpected impacts to trip progress and enjoy greater flexibility, drivers can choose to split their rest period. This solution helps lessen the impact of detention at pickup and delivery, for example.

How does the sleeper berth provision work?

Drivers can split their mandatory 10-hour rest period into two distinct periods, provided that:

  • The vehicle has a sleeper berth that meets American regulation requirements
  • The two rest periods, when paired, total at least 10 hours
  • The shorter of the two rest periods is at least 2 consecutive hours long (in the sleeper berth, off duty, or a combination of both)
  • The longer of the two rest periods is at least 7 consecutive hours spent exclusively in the sleeper berth

When using the sleeper berth provision, the order of eligible breaks does not matter. The shorter break (2 hours or more) can be taken before or after the sleeper berth rest period (7 hours or more). Also, when paired, neither rest period counts against the 14-hour driving window.

How to use the sleeper berth provision

Day 1

Day2

Day 1

  • When paired, the 3-hour long period (A) and 7-hour sleeper berth period (B) total 10 hours of rest.
  • When combining on-duty periods before and after the 3-hour sleeper berth period (A), all driving and on-duty limits are respected.
    • 7 hours are spent driving and 2 on-duty (C & D).

Day 2

  • The split carries over to the next day, so sleeper berth period (B) from day 1 is used as the first block. Since it includes at least 7 consecutive hours in the sleeper berth, the driver must rest for 3 more hours (off-duty, sleeper, or a combination of the two) (F) to be compliant.
  • When combining on-duty and driving periods before and after the 3-hour sleeper berth period (F), all driving and on-duty limits are respected.
    • 8 hours are spent driving and 4 on duty (E & G).

* It should be noted that if the driver rests for 10 consecutive hours, the next work shift resets.

The most frequent pitfalls when drivers split their 10-hour off-duty period

Pitfall #1

Not spending the long rest period in the sleeper berth

  • The long rest period must be spent in the sleeper berth for the split rest period to be compliant.
    • The longer of the two rest periods must be at least 7 consecutive hours spent exclusively in the sleeper berth.

Pitfall #2

The misconception that after one of the two qualifying rest periods, the work shift resets and you can drive 11 hours.

  • When pairing two rest periods in a split rest scenario, the 10-hour total is not the same as 10 consecutive hours of rest that reset the work shift.

What you should know about splitting rest periods in Canada

In Canada, when splitting your off-duty time, both rest periods must be spent in the sleeper berth. If you started a split in the USA, make sure you understand how the Canadian rule applies before crossing the border. Also, splitting conditions under federal regulations are different for a single driver than for a team of drivers.

Guide to Hours of Service in Canada

Conclusion

Late pickup and delivery, mechanical failures, and traffic jams can all be headache-inducing. When properly used, splitting rest periods can add flexibility to a driver’s day. It helps keep drivers happy and your trucks moving.

The best way to prevent violations when using the sleeper berth provision and abide by hours-of-service requirements is to use an electronic logging device (ELD). ISAAC’s ELD is third-party certified and makes driver compliance and workflows simpler.

The truck tablet keeps drivers connected with office staff at all times. It contains all the information they need to do their work. Favorite and location-based activities guide your drivers step by step. Logbooks are automatically updated according to driver activities to ensure perfect synchronization between logbooks and trip sheets.

Want to see ISAAC’s compliance solution in action? Watch our demo!

Watch the demo

About the author

Véronique Poirier

Compliance Support Specialist, ISAAC

Véronique Poirier is Compliance Support Specialist at ISAAC. She has been working in the transportation industry for the past ten years, during which she has served as a compliance officer. Curious and persistent by nature, Véronique has extensive experience in the world of over-dimensional transportation.

Time to move forward with managed technology

Recent blog articles

A Summer of Accomplishments for ISAAC

by | Sep 22, 2022 | President’s blog | 0 Comments

As the summer of 2022 comes to a close, I find myself looking back at some of our most recent accomplishments.

Fleets Must Act to Prevent Ransomware Attacks

by | Sep 7, 2022 | Best practices,Industry | 0 Comments

Ransomware is on the rise. Fleets must protect themselves against ransomware with a strong cybersecurity plan.

What Happens at a Roadside Inspection and How to Prepare

by | Sep 7, 2022 | Compliance and regulations,Road safety | 0 Comments

Fleets and drivers undergo multiple types of roadside inspections. Focus on safety, training, and driver support to ensure compliance.

How a Lack of Safe Truck Parking Hurts Drivers and Fleets

by | Aug 10, 2022 | Compliance and regulations,Road safety | 0 Comments

A lack of safe truck parking spots has been a serious industry issue for more than a decade, making life difficult for drivers and fleets.

How to Improve Your Fleet’s Fuel Efficiency

by | Aug 9, 2022 | Best practices | 0 Comments

In the last few years, the average fuel efficiency of fleets has increased thanks to various eco-driving technologies. Find out if your fleet has implemented any of the five common fuel efficiency tactics: mechanical upgrades, aerodynamics, power sources, operational improvements, driver training.

Drivers and Fleets Benefit from Reducing Fuel Use with ISAAC Coach

by | Jul 28, 2022 | Best practices | 0 Comments

ISAAC Coach helps to reduce fuel costs and improves driving efficiency for transport truck fleets.

How Truck Fleets Can Prevent Nuclear Verdicts

by | Jul 20, 2022 | Road safety | 0 Comments

Prevent nuclear verdicts with a strong fleet safety culture. Dashcams and truck telemetry also reduce the risk of large jury rewards against trucking companies.

Latest Features Overview

by | Jul 11, 2022 | New features | 0 Comments

ISAAC’s latest features allow to perform preventive maintenance, manage personal views on assets, use hours of service information to improve other processes, and optimize truck loads.

Operation Safe Driver Week: Reduce Speed to Save Lives

by | Jul 8, 2022 | Industry,Road safety | 0 Comments

Operation Safe Driver Week (July 10-16, 2022) is an educational and enforcement campaign that seeks to reduce risky driving behavior.

See the ISAAC solution in action

We’ll help you bring out the best in your team.