A grassroots group of truckers is promoting a campaign they're calling "Make May Matter," asking truck drivers to run scrupulously legal log books during May in a form of protest against what it views as intrusive government regulations. FEDUP, which stands for "Freedom to Express Dissatisfaction with Unfair Practices," says it wants to call attention to the amount of time drivers spend at loading and unloading docks and the time and labor often spent unloading - time that is almost never paid for and is regularly under-reported on driver logs.
"We want to demonstrate that correcting the problems associated with the interminable waiting, and not the installation of electronic monitoring devices, will be the solution that will stop truckers from getting behind the wheel tired and will greatly reduce wrecks involving large trucks," says John Head, FEDUP president.
Head also wants the government to implement a fuel surcharge formula that will be passed on to owner-operators.
The motto for "Make May Matter" is "Run it Right. Log it Legal." In addition to promoting the campaign on the Internet at www.imfedup.net
and through press releases to the media, the group is handing out flyers to truckers and asking them to make copies and distribute them.
Some opinions on the protest from a popular driver's Internet bulletin board:
"An idea whose time has come. Can you ever think of a protest that you participate in and still go to work?"
"FEDUP is calling upon drivers to log it as it actually happens and run perfectly legal in May 2000. If it takes four hours to load, log it on line 4. If it takes 1/2 hour to fuel or pre-trip a vehicle, log it on line 4. No speeding. No cheating at all. Drivers! You can send a message to carriers and corporate America this May."
"We have to begin here. Run legal! If the speed limit is 55, then 55 it is. When your 10 hours are up, shut er down. Take all the time allotted you for rest. If you can't make your appointment running legal, let dispatch know."
"Running legal is a great idea. But since it's a great idea, why only do it for one month?? And, why did it take y'all so long to get such a great idea? Why not start doing and keep on doing what y'all should have been doing all along???"