Canadian Hours of Service Training Program

Canadian Hours of Service Training Program - Online Course

Commercial drivers are normally paid per mile traveled, and this creates an incentive to complete trips as quickly as possible. Fleet operators also benefit from faster trips, since the vehicles in use become available for more trips. However, excessive driving hours cause fatigue, increasing the risk of accidents. The Commercial Vehicle Drivers Hours of Service Regulations were created to limit driving hours in Canada, also requiring a minimum number of rest hours per day. These regulations not only protect drivers, but also the general public.
This online course provides a detailed overview of the Canadian Hours of Service program. You will understand how the on-duty and off-duty hourly limits work, and cases where exemptions apply. The course also covers documentation requirements and the responsibilities of commercial drivers and carriers.
The Hours of Service Regulations apply for drivers who operate the following vehicles:

  • Commercial vehicles with over 4,500 kg of gross weight, operating in multiple provinces, territories, or states.
  • Commercial vehicles with a seating capacity of 11 or more including the driver, which operate in multiple provinces, territories, or states.

Federally regulated carriers must follow the Hours of Service Regulations, and these apply to their entire fleet. In other words, vehicles that operate in a single province or territory must also follow federal regulations if they are part of the fleet. On the other hand, provincially regulated carriers are subject to the local hours of service laws.

Daily Hours of Service for Commercial Drivers in Canada

The Hours of Service Regulations have several rules, conditions, and exceptions. However, two main requirements apply under normal circumstances:

  • Commercial drivers have a limit of 13 driving hours per day.
  • Commercial drivers must have at least eight consecutive hours off-duty between shifts.

Driving and any job-related activities are considered on-duty hours, while the rest of the time is considered off-duty hours. In a 24-hour period, there should be no more than 14 on-duty hours, and at least 10 off-duty hours.
Of the 10 off-duty hours, two can be taken in blocks of at least 30 minutes, and eight should be consecutive, as mentioned above. In cases where a driver cannot take 10 hours off-duty, a maximum of two hours can be deferred to the following day. However, this option can only be used every two days.
Commercial drivers are also subject to driving cycle limits, and there are two options. The carrier must clearly state which cycle is being followed by drivers.

  • In Cycle 1, no driving is allowed after 70 on-duty hours in a 7-day period.
  • Cycle 2 has a limit of 120 on-duty hours in a 14-day period, with at least 24 hours off after reaching 70 hours in that 14-day period.
  • Drivers can switch between cycles but must take 36 consecutive hours off when switching from Cycle 1 to 2, and 72 hours off when switching from Cycle 2 to 1.

All commercial drivers must keep a log of their hours while employed, even for off-duty days. Keeping a logbook is mandatory, and electronic recording devices are allowed. The hours registered are classified into four types:

  • Driving time
  • On-duty time, other than driving
  • Sleeper berth time
  • Off-duty time, other than sleeper berth

When a sleeper berth is used, drivers can split their 8 consecutive off-duty hours into two periods. Otherwise, these hours must be consecutive.
Tampering with hours of service that have already been recorded is against the law.

Hours of Service in Emergency and Adverse Driving Conditions

Under emergency conditions, a driver can exceed the 13 hours allowed to reach a safe location. However, the driver must stop at the first safe place available.
Adverse driving conditions include snow, sleet, and fog. Under these circumstances, drivers can extend the 13 hours allowed, and reduce the 2 off-duty hours.

Course Topics

The Canadian Hours of Service online course is composed of the following topics:

  • Log books and related laws.
  • Responsibilities
  • Daily logs – Use of electronic recording devices, and exemptions
  • Driver Activities and duty status: On-duty, driving, off-duty, sleeper berth
  • Daily limits, work shifts and cycles
  • Deferring off-duty hours
  • Safety marks
  • Sleeper berths
  • Emergency exemptions and adverse driving conditions
  • Out-of-service declarations
  • Special topics: North of 60, Alberta, British Columbia, Saskatchewan, United States

Universally Compatible

This course was created using standards that will allow playback on most internet capable devices with standard web browsing capabilities including Apple’s iTouch, iPad, and iPhone, as well as most other smart phones and tablets including those with Android and Windows operating systems.


Average Completion Time

Completion times vary depending on the number of times the information is viewed prior to finishing the course. The average completion time is 3 hours


Knowledge Assessment

Testing is conducted in this online course to reinforce the information presented. You are provided three opportunities to achieve a passing mark of 80% or greater.


Certificate of Completion

Upon successful completion of this course, a certificate will be available to download and print. You can access your certificate through your online account.

Canadian Hours of Service Training Program - Online Course