The federal government is requiring the installation of electronic logging devices (ELD) in all commercial trucks by December 2017.
The federal ELog mandate, which was entered into the Federal Registry Dec. 10, establishes strict controls on drivers’ duty hours and institutes penalties for failure to comply with regulatory requirements. The rule would also penalize carriers and shippers who coerce drivers into violating truck safety rules, according to www.joc.com.
Here at Paramount Freight Systems, one of the premiere Owner Operators and Lease Purchasers trucking companies in America, we monitor trends and developments in the industry to enable drivers and managers to stay abreast of changing trends.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration in late November entered the “Prohibiting Coercion of Commercial Motor Vehicle Drivers” rule into the Federal Register. It becomes effective Jan. 29, 2016.
“Our nation relies on millions of commercial vehicle drivers to move people and freight, and we must do everything we can to ensure that they are able to operate safely,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “This (coercion) rule enables us to take enforcement action against anyone in the transportation chain who knowingly and recklessly jeopardizes the safety of the driver and of the motoring public.”
Federal officials said the ELD mandate’s requirements will lead to safer roads, according to www.truckinginfo.com:
· Minimum design and performance standards for hours-of-service (HOS) and the ELOGs.
· Requirements for the mandatory use of ELDs by drivers required to prepare HOS records of duty status.
· Requirements concerning HOS supporting documents.
· Measures to address concerns about harassment resulting from the mandatory use of ELDs.
Many transportation analysts have mixed emotions on the ELD mandate, arguing it may hamstring segments of the industry in the next two years.
Industry leaders acknowledge that the mandate will have a financial effect, but say it’s too early to predict precisely how the requirements will shape the industry. “No one knows what the impact will be, but it’s going to be big,” Mike Regan told www.joc.com. Regan is chief relationship officer at TranzAct Technologies and advocacy chairman for shipper group NASSTRAC.
Some leading economists argue that provisions in the mandate during its two-year implementation may hamper fleet productivity but produce a more robust and thriving industry. ELD use and other technological advances will foster sleeker and more streamlined operations and lead to higher driver pay and bigger fleet profits, they say.
This huge technological transformation of the trucking industry as a whole may create an unanticipated side effect among smaller fleets struggling to adapt to the new requirements.
Currently , more than 2.6 million commercial trucks in the United States are not equipped with ELDs. Some fleet managers are predicting the expense and the mandate could put a drag on the industry of about 8 percent, due in part to the inability of logbook “fudging,” according to Stephens Research.
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