Driver Harassment

This week OOIDA Foundation released a rebuttal to the conclusions of FMCSA regarding a study they commissioned on harassment and ELD’s.

I have a recent post about the Truth About ELD’s that should shed some light on this subject as well. The fact is pretty clear that the FMCSA has been corrupted by its agenda. They [FMCSA] seem to want the information to say something different than what it really says. In the OOIDA article by Dave Tanner, he points out some interesting statistics. I took the liberty of picking some of those findings out to share with you.

The study was conducted by Maine Way Services of Fryeburg, Maine. They interviewed 628 professional truckers to gather their findings. According to the survey, 341 used ELDs. 287 used paper logs. The total number of drivers used in this survey represents .0002% of the estimated commercial drivers in America today.

About 70% of drivers surveyed were company drivers and 29% were owner/operators. Current ELD users are made up of 80% company drivers and 18% were owner/operators. 35% of drivers said that they believed ELDs would not make the road safer.

The study said 19% of drivers were asked by carriers to do things that were clearly illegal, such as falsify logs or duty status. It also revealed that 13% of office employees and managers would somewhat routinely ask drivers to operate illegally or to falsify logs. The study revealed that some drivers experienced threats of firing, and retribution for refusing loads that the driver felt unsafe or illegal to move. Drivers also reported threats (by management) to call officers for ignoring calls during off duty time.

With these things in mind, the FMCSA interpreted this information to say that ELDs did not contribute significantly to harassment. They plan to move forward with the ELD requirement. The way I read this information, it says that ELDs do nothing to reduce harassment. It is clear from the findings of the study that driver harassment is alive and well.

The problem I have with all of this is that it actually does nothing to improve safety or reduce harassment. It simply adds costs for the driver or small company that serves no purpose at all.

FMCSA holds listening sessions for input from the public. It seems that the information gathered at these sessions is recorded and subsequently disregarded. The opinions of the seasoned drivers seem to be discounted in favor of the more influential lobbyists.

It is imperative that we become proactive by contacting our representatives and go over the head of the out of control FMCSA. The easiest way to do this is through the Fighting for Truckers web site. You can find more information about Fixing FMCSA here. You can also find much more information there about improving safety and other concerns of the trucking industry.

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