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  • Writer's pictureAlex Maltese

How Many Hours Can a Truck Driver Drive a Week?

People often take for granted the job truck drivers do, but the truth is that it’s something exhausting to do. Truck drivers drive for long hours, and that includes late nights. The problem with that is they are more prone to fall asleep due to the exhaustion of driving all day.

Naturally, no one would want to take a job that is dangerous, so the law restricts the number of hours truck drivers can drive. Apart from that, they have to take several breaks throughout the day to stay active and awake while working. Another danger is not knowing where the blind spots are in a car.

Regardless of that, truck drivers still work a lot of hours, so people often wonder how many hours truck drivers can drive a week.

People looking for the answer to that question have landed on the right page! Here they can learn everything they need to know about how long truck drivers can drive and the dangers of going past that limit. Also, learn more about the dangers of overloaded trucks.

How Many Hours a Truck Driver can legally drive

How Many Hours Can a Truck Driver Legally Drive?

Truck drivers can’t drive more than 60/70 hours after being on duty for seven/eight days in a row. When truck drivers spend all that time driving and get to the end of their eight/seven work period, they need to rest for at least 34 hours before starting to work again.

Schedules can be a bit different depending on what kind of truck the driver is driving. Nevertheless, property-carrying drivers and passenger-carrying drivers have the same weekly hour limit. These regulations come from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.

Is It Dangerous to Drive More Hours Than the Law Allows Truck Drivers to Drive Per Week?

Driving more hours than what the law allows truck drivers to drive weekly is highly dangerous and could cause major truck accidents. When people work for many hours in a row without a break, their brain stops working as it should. Focusing on the street for that many time makes truck drivers develop anxiety, stress, and high blood pressure levels. You may want to contact one of the semi accident attorneys in Long Island NY if you are involved in an accident with a truck driver.

People need to sleep and take breaks, and feeling exhausted can make drivers fall asleep while driving. Back pain is also one of the main issues of truck drivers driving more time than they should since it makes them adopt a bad posture.

How Many Hours Can a Truck Driver Drive Daily?

Having a weekly hour limit doesn’t mean working all the hours one wants daily since overloading oneself on a daily basis can also cause the negative effects mentioned before. Truck drivers can’t drive more than 14 hours after starting a new shift. This only applies to property-carrying drivers, though. Passenger-carrying drivers can work for 15 hours after being off duty for eight hours.

Many would think one hour doesn’t make the difference, but it can. Regardless of 14 and 15 being the limit drivers can work after being off duty, it’s ideal they only drive for 10/hours daily.

It’s worth noting drivers are allowed to extend their daily shifts and weekly hour limits up to two hours if any troublesome driving conditions could have kept them from doing what they needed to under their regular schedule.

Truck Stops

What About Breaks?

Breaks are one of the most important parts of what truck drivers do, and they can’t skip any breaks if they want to be able to work all the time they need. All drivers take a 30-minute break if they work eight hours nonstop.

Being off-duty means not driving or doing anything related to their jobs. Some trucks wonder if they can still take their breaks if they stopped for some minutes while being on duty, and the answer is they can, as long as they don’t stop for 30 minutes or more during their shift.


One of the reasons working as a truck driver is difficult is the time they need to focus on the road without taking a break since, even if truck drivers have breaks, they are sometimes not enough. Regardless of that, everyone should be safe from truck accidents as long as they follow the law-established hour limits.

Truck companies can’t ask drivers to go beyond that schedule, and if an accident were to happen because of that, the truck company would be liable for it. Anyone interested in this matter can call the Law Office of Carl Maltese to get more information on the matter. This law firm takes cases in Long Island, NY.


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