Some Truck Drivers Over Hours | VideoChris Williams | 3/12/2013
Oil rigs are everywhere in western North Dakota, and the people driving them sometimes are behind the wheel for more hours than the law permits.
"I`d say there`s a fair amount of people that are nit following the rules, running over hours,” said North Dakota Highway Patrolman Brett Mlynar.
Brett Mlynar of the Highway Patrol says truck drivers can drive 12 consecutive hours, but then are required to have 10 consecutive hours off.
"I usually average 65-70 hours, in 5-6 days, depending on what type of work we have,” said Truck Driver Thomas Hatch.
Hatch says his company works within the rules, and they keep log books to track how many hours they spend on the road.
"That`s one of the things we always look at is the log book. Critique that, make sure people are following the rules like they`re supposed to be, and also try to educate as best we can too,” added Mlynar.
Penalties for going over the number of hours without rest range from a $100 ticket to placing the driver out of service until they get they meet the time off requirements. The drivers we talked to today said their companies don`t encourage them to drive when they`re tired.
"The company I work with, Tuttle and Tuttle, they don`t push us too hard as far as trying to ask us to do things that are first off illegal, and second off just not safe,” said truck driver Jason Shippey.
Mlynar says fatigue driving is just as dangerous as texting, or drinking and driving. All three can cause crashes.