I know it has been a while since I last wrote anything for the page but there needs to be a strong and accurate response to the latest changes that the FMCSA intends to make along with the statements that Anne Ferro has made regarding them. I have seen nothing in regards to their plans and statements that has done anything but simply say “OK we will roll over and take it”. Some won’t say anything in fear of losing their job, others have sponsors who they pander to and even more just don’t want to lift a finger to try and defend their career and their way of life.
The FMCSA is eagerly working to put a mandate into effect requiring electronic logging or EOBR’s, or whatever they are referring to it as this week, into commercial trucks. They know they are up against a deadline as per the MAP21 legislation requiring a mandate to be put into place before the law expires in mid 2014. In their haste to force this mandate upon drivers the FMCSA and Anne Ferro have gone so far as to make statements which are misleading at best and just plain false in other regards. I will address some of those by using excerpts form an article from the good people at Go By Truck Global News.
Subcommittee chairman Rep. Thomas Petri (R-Ore.) quizzed Ferro about the potential issues of trying to put every driver’s schedule into what he designated a “one size fits all” rule, including scenarios of drivers being close to home or close to a destination and running out of hours.
Ferro pointed out that uniformity has been a significant issue for FMCSA in making the rule, but that uniformity is integral “ensure a level playing field.” She also noted that most companies that switch find electronic logs to be effective and profitable and that most drivers eventually come to prefer EOBRs to paper logs once they become familiar with the technology.
Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.) also pressed Ferro about the problems presented by detention time to hours of service rules and how the agency intends to address it. Ferro reported a study is underway and the agency expects results by 2015.
So according to Anne Ferro most companies find Elogs to be profitable and that most drivers come to prefer EOBR’s to paper logs, where did she get those figures? Are they profitable for all companies or just the larger ones? What about the profitability for drivers?. The words came out of your mouth Anne Ferro and now I want to know as a U.S. citizen and as a professional driver, after all you work for me and now I am requesting that you provide proof to support your statements because from the many drivers that I have spoken with the vast majority do not want EOBR’s.
Let’s look at another major point, the FMCSA wanted EOBR’s because it would increase safety, there was absolutely no mention of safety in her claims. So what happened there Anne? Have you now switched your focus to profitability? Does safety take a back seat when you are on the clock to rush a mandate into place?
Rep DeFazio raised a very good point regarding detention time for drivers as most drivers today are not compensated for sitting at a shipper or receiver or if they are they are compensated very little. Anne Ferro’s reply as is typical from her, that a study is underway that they “expect” to be completed by 2015. So it seems to be perfectly ok with Anne Ferro and the FMCSA to implement a mandate which can effectively cripple drivers financially for a few years before they figure out how to make it work. Has the FMCSA also figured out a way to drive our cars before we put gas in them as well? Because the logic is the same.
Once again Ferro has responded with the same answers, answers based on mythical statistics that none of us have seen, answers that contain “we are working on that”or “we have a study that will be completed sometime in the future but we don’t know for sure”. So you are sure that you need to mandate EOBR’s but you are not sure of why you need them or how you are going to address the many problems they are going to create? How about you try to solve those problems BEFORE you make a mandate. While the FMCSA and Anne Ferro are working on that I’ll be busy putting some gas in my car before I drive it, because logic and common sense demand it.