Hotshot sleeper berth vs off duty

Discussion in 'Expediter and Hot Shot Trucking Forum' started by Jtg Express llc, Sep 9, 2021.

  1. Jtg Express llc

    Jtg Express llc Bobtail Member

    Sep 9, 2021
    So I run a small hotshot operation. 4 door pickups. We got nailed during a onsite audit for using sleeper berth on our log because our trucks don’t have qualifying sleepers.(Big fines $$&) I just have the back seats out and a small bunk built with mattress. We were told to completely forget line 2 on the log. Fast forward 6 months. One of my drivers gets pulled over in Texas. Officer gave him a violation for not using sleeper berth!! Our logs were legit, but he said we are not allowed to use off duty unless we have a hotel receipt. So I did a Data Q on it (total waste of time).
    The answer from the data q said the violation would be upheld, ( same trooper that gave the violation did the review) and the remedy for this is to use sleeper berth (which would be falsification of log) or get a different truck that has a sleeper!!
    We called FMCSA to ask which is the correct way to log? The answer was, We Don’t Know!
    They said every state looks at it differently! NO No No no!!!! This is a federal regulation every state has to treat it the same!!
    Anyone else run into this log problem in a hotshot?
    24kHotshot Thanks this.
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  3. pavrom

    pavrom Road Train Member

    Apr 29, 2012
    NE illinois
    All it takes is one good cop !
    LoneRanger and Bean Jr. Thank this.
  4. ZVar

    ZVar Road Train Member

    Sep 10, 2010
    Flint, MI

    Yea, Texas officer is wrong, unless the space qualifies as a sleep berth, which just taking out the back seats and putting in a mattress doesn't qualify.
    My suggestion is keep logging as off duty because that is the legal way to do it. If an officer makes an issue of it, have the driver politely make a citation out of it. At least that way it can be fought. As you are legal it's an easy court case win. You can then do the dataq to get it removed from your CSA score.

    Might also want to print up the requirements for a sleep berth and put it in your document binder. Maybe highlight the portions that disqualify you like length and no egress and such.

    Electronic Code of Federal Regulations (eCFR)
    Grumppy, gentleroger, Lite bug and 3 others Thank this.
  5. Hulld

    Hulld Road Train Member

    Oct 19, 2015
    Upstate NY
    Log it as off duty.
    There is no legal requirement to provide hotel recipients.
    And there is no legal requirement to prove where you went or what you did on off duty time.
    Especially when you spent the night at your girlfriends house or friends and family
    Also it is not illegal when off duty to sleep in a tent or on the ground in a sleeping bag or even in a tree for that matter.
  6. HoneyBadger67

    HoneyBadger67 Road Train Member

    Dec 15, 2018
    Champaign, IL
    In the last 10yrs I've used sleeper berth (in a sleeper truck) by accident about 20X. I always go off duty. No, I can't split break and that's the reason I do it that way. No one can call me after 8hrs and demand I get moving. So...line 2 isn't 'necessary', per se...10hrs off duty is 10hrs.
    Lite bug Thanks this.
  7. crocky

    crocky Road Train Member

    Jun 28, 2017
    The officer doesn't have a clue WTF he's talking about. They can't tell you where you have to sleep. They can only tell you you can't use sleeper berth if you don't have a qualifying sleeper because that is the law. However, If you want to sleep on the hood of your truck they can't say #### about it.

    I'd fight the hell out of that ticket. The cop doesn't have a clue what he's talking about. All the nonsense about needing hotel receipts is wise tales that people keep repeating then idiot cops pick it up thinking it's legit. Read the rules.
    Grumppy, haz-matguru and Lite bug Thank this.
  8. Brandonpdx

    Brandonpdx Road Train Member

    Dec 27, 2007
    Elkhart, IN
    I think the expression is “wives tales” but yeah I’m pretty sure the whole hotel receipt thing is BS. You can sleep in your pickup and log it off duty. The RV bozos do it all the time.

    You just got unlucky and found a DOT doofus that didn’t know what he was talking about. Not being allowed to log line 2 without a legitimate sleeper is a real thing though, mostly having to do with running a legal team operation.
  9. haz-matguru

    haz-matguru Road Train Member

    Feb 18, 2012

    This is a truck with an actual sleeper and its classified as a tractor.

    The Texas officer was completely wrong. However as far as it being federal law and states treating it the same. Well all officers have different interpretation of the law. But you can thank citation quotas for that.

    The drivers shall keep logging off duty for the 10hr break. Unless the trucks get upfited with sleepers.

    On the other hand im hearing more and more. That hotshot are the new punching bags of the DOT.
    Grumppy Thanks this.
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