Split Sleeper HOS – Guide & Examples

Split Sleeper rules are not supposed to be complicated.

Yet all we could see online were confusing, inaccurate explanations of how to properly leverage the split sleeper berth hours of service rule. From different sleeper berth period splits, to how it impacts shift limits; the resources we found would lead drivers towards getting violations.

So we took it into our hands to come up with a clear and simple guide that provides explanations and examples of how you can use split-sleeper berth provisions properly and compliantly.

Before you continue reading: The Split-Sleeper berth provision only applies to drivers driving a vehicle with a sleeper berth. This will be verified by the DOT during an audit!

Table of Contents

*Click to skip to section

Split-Sleeper Berth Periods

There are a few key aspects of Split-Sleeper berth periods that you have to know:

  • Split-Sleeper berth periods can be split into 8/2 and 7/3
  • Short Breaks can be in Off-Duty of Sleeper Berth
  • Split-Sleeper berth periods do NOT count towards shift limits

Split-Sleeper berth periods can be split into 8/2 and 7/3

This means that you’re able to use the split-sleeper provision in periods of:

  • 8 hours and 2 hours
  • 7 hours and 3 hours
Note: the 2 hours or 3 hours period are referred to as ‘short breaks’.

Using 3 hours + 7 hours

Using 2 hours + 8 hours

The FMCSA is looking into whether they will include 6/4, and 5/5, but currently this is not implemented yet.

Short Breaks can be in Off-Duty or Sleeper Berth

What’s important here is that the short break (2 hours, or 3 hours) does not have to be in Sleeper Berth duty status.

See below for 2 compliant logs, one using Sleeper Berth status and one using Off Duty status for the short breaks.

Using 3 hours Sleeper Berth

Using 3 hours Off-Duty

In both situations, you will have a valid Split-Sleeper. A couple things to remember here are:

  • Your short break cannot be a combination of Sleeper Berth and Off Duty, it has to be one or the other!
  • Long Breaks (7 or 8 hours) can only be in Sleeper Berth duty status.

If you have any questions, we have a team of experts at Switchboard to teach you more about Split Sleeper. Give us a call at 1-844-5-FLEETS, or email us at support@onswitchboard.com!

Stay up to date with industry news!

Gaining Hours - Why use Split Sleeper?

There are many reasons why a driver will use the Split-Sleeper provision, but essentially, it’s a way to split up an entire 10-hour rest period into two separate periods.

One useful example of split-sleeper is to make use of split-sleeper periods as drop-off or pick-up times, so that you have more time on the road.

The key aspects of how Split-Sleeper helps your hours is:

  • Split-Sleeper berth periods do NOT count towards shift limits
  • Split-Sleeper moves your Shift Window

Split-Sleeper berth periods do NOT count towards shift limits

If you’re using the split-sleeper berth provision, each of your breaks will not count towards shift limits.

That means that, done properly, you can extend your shift beyond 14 hours.

Let’s look at some examples of how using the split-sleeper berth provision can extend your shift window.

Assuming a full reset happened at 00:00 Midnight

The driver has 11hrs driving / 14hrs on-duty starting from midnight – without split-sleeper, they could only work until 2pm.

However, here’s what happened:

  • A 3 hours Off-Duty Split-Sleeper break was taken at 7am
    • This extended their shift by 3 hours
  • Driver was allowed to work until 5pm

What’s the catch?

The main catch about gaining extra shift hours, is that it has to be a proper split-sleeper. Your breaks have to properly be matched with another break period:

  • 7 with 3
  • 3 with 7
  • 2 with 8
  • 8 with 2
If you don’t ensure that your break is matched up with the other break, then your shift hour won’t actually extend.
But how does this all affect your next shift window?

By the way, if you have any questions and want an expert from Switchboard to teach you more about Split Sleeper, give us a call at 1-844-5-FLEETS, or email us at support@onswitchboard.com!

Moving the Shift Window – How to Calculate

This is probably the most complicated part of the split-sleeper berth provision because there are a few moving parts in this. However by using examples, we’ve made it as simple as possible.

When you combine 2 break periods (8 and 2, or 3 and 7), the shift-window calculation moves to the end of the first period

What does this mean? Let us show you in the example below: we will give some examples of how many hours the driver has left at each part of the day.

At 00:00
Driving Time Remaining: 11 hours
On-Duty Time Remaining: 14 hours

At 7:00
Driving Time Remaining: 5 hours
On-Duty Time Remaining: 7 hours

At 10:00
Driving Time Remaining: 5 hours
On-Duty Time Remaining: 7 hours

Shift window increased by 3 hours

At 17:00
Driving Time Remaining: 0 hours
On-Duty Time Remaining: 0 hours

At 24:00
Driving Time Remaining: 6 hours
On-Duty Time Remaining: 7 hours

Shift window moved from 00:00 to 10:00
Shift window increased by 7 hours

How did the shift window move?

Under CFR Title 9, it states that:

The driving time limit and the 14-hour duty-period limit must be re-calculated from the end of the first of the first of the two periods

Here is a quote from our conversation with the DOT:

If a driver does 10 hours in the sleeper berth and has something to pair it with it can be used as a split sleeper berth…

Based on the rule, any period of time that is part of a split sleeper berth calculation is not counted towards the 14 hour window.

Safety Investigator
Washington State Division
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

 Advanced Tricks

From our conversation with the DOT, here are some advanced tricks that you can do with the split-sleeper provision.

If your long-break (8 or 7 hours) is extended to 10 hours, you will get an entire 14/11 hours back.

Instead of just moving your shift to the end of the first break, it will reset to the end of the 10 hours.

8 hours long-break for split-sleeper
At 24:00, the driver would have:

  • 7 hours driving remaining
  • 8 hours on-duty remaining

10 hours long-break for split-sleeper
At 24:00, the driver would have:

  • 11 hours driving remaining
  • 14 hours on-duty remaining

You can move your shift window again by completing matching another split-sleeper period the next day

Using continual split-sleeper periods, you can keep moving your shift window forward. For example, you can continually do 3 + 7 + 3 + 7 + 3 periods.

First Day
At 24:00, the driver would have:

  • 7 hours driving remaining
  • 8 hours on-duty remaining

Second Day
At 10:00, the driver would have:

  • 4 hours driving remaining
  • 6 hours on-duty remaining

 

And that’s it! That is all you need to know about the split-sleeper provision.

If you’re still confused, the FMCSA has provided a very useful tool to calculate hours-of-service here:

ELD – Educational Tool for Hours of Service (dot.gov)

We know sometimes split-sleeper can be confusing, and hopefully with the examples above, they can clear the air. If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to Switchboard and our team is ready to answer any questions you have about Hours-of-Service.

Technology that makes it easy for drivers

Book a free 5 minute demo and we’ll show you just how simple it is to use Switchboard.

Laisser un commentaire