by: Brad Hollister
The trucking marketplace may be under relentless tension from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA)’s desire to implement a lengthy list of legislation. The sweeping reform from the present administration as overseen by Secretary Ray Lahood has introduced a significant number of brand new regulations from environmental restrictions to safety guidelines along with many much more. One of these new restrictions would be alarming enough, yet multiple controversial restrictions have hit the freight marketplace and or been considered by the FMCSA in recent months. The combination of many of these however has caused and will continue to cause pressure on drivers to be able to make a viable living driving trucks on the road in the upcoming years.
One such law includes the discussion of requiring Electronic On Board Recorders to monitor drivers. With Electronic On Board Recorder (EOBR)’s, third parties are able to determine and record the precise running time of a truck from a single device installed in the driver’s cab. The goal of such a program is to monitor the actual driving time of each driver remotely so that log books and driving hours no longer have to be kept and accurate record keeping can be achieved. Obviously, there is a strong debate regarding implementation of the EOBR’s and the have an impact on such measures can have on the US freight marketplace.
The EOBR regulation will come into effect as early as 1st June 2012. According to this rule the independent truck drivers and transportation transportation companies who violate the hours of service guideline can be needed to install electronic on board recorders in their trucks. The FMCSA has taken a defensive stance on the topic of EOBR’s. The Federal Motor Carriers Safety Administration has reported that only repeat offenders of current driving standards will be required to install the Electronic On Board Recorders in their trucks. The FMCSA estimates this amounts to only 10 percent of all truck drivers being needed to have EOBR’s monitor their driving activities. The purpose of an EOBR will be to record the location where the duty is changed and where the truck is moving. Drivers violating the safety procedures will have the option to maintain the information on the recorder but the recorder will be programmed to keep the original as well as fed information intact for future use. The information will be digitally recorded so that in case of any mishap the safety officials can retrieve the data. Paper log books currently perform many of the duties which are to be replaced by the implementation of EOBR’s. The EOBR will keep track of all operational and functional processes; record the truck loading and unloading time with location, as well as all operation time, and other stops both scheduled and accidental. The EOBR’s will also store the time the driver is resting or off the road so that all resting periods and break periods can be properly documented and accounted for.
Many Carriers, Truckers, as well as Marketplace Associations like the Owner Operator Independent Truck Drivers Association (OOIDA) are very opposing the passing of this controversial new requirement. Many drivers believe the paper logs are as effective as the recorder and that the recorder will hinder in the day to day life of a driver and affect his privacy. Truck Drivers who are repeat offenders of the Hours of Service guidelines may be the first to be needed to install the EOBR’s in their truck cabs. EOBR’s could greatly impact the way that much more than 6,000 fleets operation and also effect the lives of greater than four million truck drivers as the EOBR’s turn out to be more widely implemented inside the industry as well as effect a lot more drivers along with freight carriers.
The truckers or freight carriers and also freight carrier fleets who voluntarily installed the Electronic On Board Recorder in their trucks have discovered the device useful along with convenient. Some truck drivers have reported the device has produced a convenient way to manage their work time more effectively. Truck Drivers no understand the exact time they need to drive the truck along with how a lot time they have to dispatch loads and find freight for their empty trucks. Truck Drivers will drive the truck for 14 hours and sleep for 10 hours, resulting in total time driving the truck to be no much more than 70 hours a week. This way freight dispatchers can plan which available loads they should get loaded. Truck Drivers can also not sit idle as well as waste their valuable drive time waiting to get loaded at truck stops or other rig parking locations. After Truck Drivers complete the unloading dispatchers can ensure the drivers are rested as well as don’t have trucker fatigue just before giving them freight access towards the freight marketplace of freight loads.
In the event of accidents, the FMCSA believes the data recorded on the EOBR’s will determine whether a driver was guilty or not of Inattentive driving. The EOBR will identify whether the truck driver was out of Hours of Service (HOS) at the time the accident occurred. The implementation for these Electronic On Board Monitoring Devices can be tough to get accustomed to inside the beginning but may definitely change the way that the industry operates by forcing drivers to think twice about violating their Hours of Service (HOS). This legislation in addition to several other should continue to put pressure on truck drivers along with make the workplace less enjoyable and also much more restricted as time goes on.
About the Author
Brad Hollister is an Seasoned Freight Executive with Freight Access (Freight Access.com). and Director of Business Development for Freight Access, Inc. Hollister possesses a appreciation for Business Development by means of innovation, process improvement, and implementation of the most recent technologies. Feel free to contact him with any kind of inquiries, opportunities, or ideas (http://www.bradhollister.com) or (312) 450-3020.