Improve Hours-of-Service Results With ETHOS

screen-capture of ETHOS electronic logging table

Complying with the Hours-of-Service (HOS) regulations can be challenging for drivers and motor carriers. With the implementation of electronic logging devices and recent HOS changes, keeping drivers and operations staff up to date and in compliance is essential to avoiding preventable violations and potentially damaging the company’s public image in the Safety Measurement System (SMS).

To help in this area, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) released the Education Tool for Hours of Service (ETHOS).

ETHOS is a web-based resource that enables users to enter real-world and hypothetical duty status scenarios to identify potential violations or analyze existing log entries to better understand where violations occurred. This tool includes the following HOS regulations

Inspectors will ensure the vehicle’s brake systems, cargo securement, coupling devices, driveline/driveshaft components, driver’s seat, exhaust systems, frames, fuel systems, lighting devices, steering mechanisms, suspensions, tires, van and open-top trailer bodies, wheels, rims, hubs, and windshield wipers are compliant with regulations. 

  • 11-hour driving limit (property) or 10-hour driving limit (passenger)
  • 14-hour driving window (property) or 15-hour, on-duty limit (passenger)
  • 30-minute break (property)
  • Sleeper berth provision

Note: The 60/70-hour limit regulations are not covered by ETHOS.

Above is a pre-populated example of the revised 30-minute break with no violations. Additional pre-populated examples are provided, or users can enter a custom example. This can be useful when determining if a driver’s availability will meet the needs for a specific delivery or if adjustments need to be made.

Quick links to the HOS and electronic logging device rules are also provided on the ETHOS website.


  • Use ETHOS as a training tool to educate drivers on the new HOS rules. 

  • Use ETHOS in one-on-one training efforts to educate individual drivers on problem areas. 

  • Measure SMS results before and after training to determine the effectiveness of the training. 

Note: These lists are not intended to be all-inclusive.

This material is intended to be a broad overview of the subject matter and is provided for informational purposes only. Great West Casualty Company does not provide legal advice to its insureds or other  parties, nor does it advise insureds or other parties on employment-related issues, therefore the subject matter is not intended to serve as legal or employment advice for any issue(s) that may arise in the operations of its insureds or other parties. Legal advice should always be sought from legal counsel. Great West Casualty Company shall have neither liability nor responsibility to any person or entity with respect to any loss, action, or inaction alleged to be caused directly or indirectly as a result of the information contained herein.Reprinted with permission from Great West Casualty Company.