Drivers

FMCSA Outlines Survey Plans for Electronic Onboard Recorders

May 28, 2013

By Oliver Patton

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In 2011 the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District Columbia Circuit vacated the FMCSA's plan to mandate electronic recorders for hours of service because it had not addressed harassment.
In 2011 the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District Columbia Circuit vacated the FMCSA's plan to mandate electronic recorders for hours of service because it had not addressed harassment.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is preparing to survey drivers and carriers on the role of electronic onboard recorders in driver harassment.

Harassment became a key issue in the pending EOBR rule when an appeals court, acting on a challenge by the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association, said the agency needed to pay more attention to this concern.

In 2011 the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District Columbia Circuit vacated the agency’s plan to mandate recorders because it had not addressed harassment.

In addition, the recorder mandate that Congress passed last year includes a provision requiring the agency to take harassment into account.

In response, the agency last December asked for comments on its plan to survey drivers.

Comments came from individual drivers, as well as industry associations such as OOIDA and American Trucking Associations.

Most of the drivers said they oppose electronic recorders, while ATA supported both recorders and the survey. OOIDA offered suggestions on what the survey should cover.

With these comments in hand, and having conducted public listening sessions on the issue, the agency is outlining the approach it plans to take.

It said it will generally examine harassment and coercion, and determine the role recorders might play.  The surveys will cover carriers as well as drivers.

The agency will randomly survey drivers at truck stops, including those who already use recorders as well as those who do not. Neither the drivers nor their employers will be identified and the data will aggregated without reference to the driver or the fleet, the agency said.

In response to concerns from OOIDA, the agency posted a draft of the questions it plans to include.

It will, for example, ask drivers if they have been required to meet a schedule that they considered unrealistic, to drive when fatigued or to log incorrectly in order get more work time.

The survey also will cover drivers’ interactions with law enforcement officials. It will ask drivers who use recorders if they ever have difficulty producing records for officers, and if so was the problem big enough to make them feel harassed by the request.

In a Federal Register notice today the agency said it will submit its plans to the White House Office of Management and Budget for review, and asked for comments from the industry. Comments are due by June 27.

 

Comments

  1. 1. Anonymous [ May 29, 2013 @ 05:40AM ]

    Harassment ? In not sure what harasssment they are talking about.

    I'm all for on board recorders. Now we will get out breaks, and not be "kinda" forced to work illegal and unrealistic hours.

    Plus, with recorders we will get paid for all the hours/miles we work !

  2. 2. Jeff [ May 29, 2013 @ 06:07AM ]

    In the mobile home industry the drivers will be impacted drastically. For now they get paid xxx dollars mile one way. For them to make any money they must run illegal part time. Example they leave home terminal 5:30 am traveling 300 miles which they could del n return to home terminal under normal circumstance legally. They have multiple flats on home should've delivered around 12-1. Now due to flats, plastic problems and a burned out hub on home (which these r common weekly sometimes daily). They can't deliver till 5 pm and have been on duty nearly 12 hours w only 5-6 hours driving. Now with electronic logs they will have to stay overnight legally and not get to work next day. In turn loosing money. Now if it would force the rates up drastically on MH it would benifirs them to run legal. Drivers now have to run illegal to survive due to companies fighting over rates.

  3. 3. Terry Massey [ May 29, 2013 @ 06:44AM ]

    I am opposed to the government getting involved in trucking or any other business in any form. I do understand the statement that Anonymous made about getting paid for all his hours and being put in position to run over hours, but I also run my own trucking co. and remember that the hours of service rules were written by people who never have been in a truck mush less made a profit and provided jobs for anybody. If Mr. Anonymous is being abused , he needs to find another company, or better yet, buy his own truck. I'm not picking on him and have been in his position and do understand what he is saying but this country was build on "getting the job done " and the government and the clock on the wall didn't play a part. If I'm three hours from delivering my customers load and the clock(rule book) tells me I have to wait until the next day , guess what, my customers gets his product. In any business , we must preform a service, those that excel ride to the top. Just show me one " 1" successful government run business that makes a profit , and pays its own way. Thanks for taking time to read my thoughts.

  4. 4. pat Fitzgerald [ May 29, 2013 @ 12:14PM ]

    I have my own truck I am against it why should I have to put one in my truck when i have done the same run's for years 2 trips from Oregon to the Republic of California never run over 450 mile a day one way 2 tripos a week. I

  5. 5. pat Fitzgerald [ May 29, 2013 @ 12:14PM ]

    I have my own truck I am against it why should I have to put one in my truck when i have done the same run's for years 2 trips from Oregon to the Republic of California never run over 450 mile a day one way 2 tripos a week. I

  6. 6. Michael Perkins [ June 02, 2013 @ 06:49PM ]

    I am a O/O and we have enough bullsh** to put with.I believe in saftey 1st and formost. I am to old to risk my life for a load, dispatch,company,or anyone else. I don;t need a onboard to keep track of me. We are men and women trying to work and make a living out here doing a job that most people wouldn't do for pay that is not that great. The government can even run its self .

  7. 7. Joe O [ June 02, 2013 @ 07:59PM ]

    Harassment aside, I refuse to pay even one cent for a device that will only be used to monitor my every move. When EOBRs are required, I'm done trucking. This business has been good to me for 36 years, but here is the line in the sand for me. Good luck to the trucking industry in trying to replace the mass exodus of drivers over this, and speed limiters and ridiculous medical requirements pertaining to BMI and sleep studies et al.

  8. 8. angelo [ September 01, 2013 @ 05:25PM ]

    Eobr in cab camera come on government dont watch terrorist or criminals that much why treat a hard workin driver worst than a criminal anne ferro and bill graves need to make their money by the mile and stay away from their families eobr will get u stuck in places u can even shower or shit yall r crazy and bill graves how does this make morale go up when u cant even help a fellow driver r talk to a driver on the ground tryin to beat a clock and 2nd how can u put a clock on being safe tryin to beat a clock anne and bill r Devils wit no heart

  9. 9. Judy Keith [ July 07, 2014 @ 08:54PM ]

    Elogs will not ever make anyone a safe driver! Very much the other way around! You are stressed all day long watching the clock. Trying to beat the clock. Your stuck in god awful places! Who the hell can make truck payments on 450 miles a day?? Angelo is correct the gov. Has no idea what they are doing! Ihave 17 yrs OTR. No elogs ! No camera on my truck! The HOS change has cost me 12,000 per year! The restart is just about the dumbest thing to come down on us! The 14 hour rule is the major cause of fatigued drivers. Can not rest when you need to! I am ready to walk away from trucking!

 

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