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Drivers, Don’t Confuse Ego Stroking With Victory In Washington D.C.

OK, so I just caught a feed on Facebook from OOIDA regarding a vote in the U.S. House of Representatives that passed H.R. 3095 that requires the FMCSA to have a public comment period before passing new regulations regarding sleep apnea testing and treatment for professional drivers. So the question I have is why is this being hailed as some sort of victory for drivers? Did the FMCSA actually listen to the input of drivers before they made the 14 hour “stopwatch” rule? NO. Did the FMCSA listen to the input of drivers before they made the most recent changes to the Hours of Service involving the 30 minute break and 34 hour restart? NO. 

So why are we now supposed to believe that the FMCSA is going to somehow have a change of heart and that Anne Ferro will stop playing dictator to the trucking industry? Will somebody at OOIDA please step up and explain to me how this is going to change Ferro’s plan to move forward with even more regulations, and please, make it a damn good explanation. While I applaud many of the efforts of OOIDA I also have to question how this can be considered a victory even in the most minuscule sense of the word. This is nothing more than a delaying of the inevitable unless real action is taken by politicians in Washington D.C. They showed their true colors when Rep. Hanna was set to propose a bill to do away with the funding to enforce the new HOS regulations. The Teamsters sent an email to everyone in Congress telling them not to support it while holding campaign contributions over their heads, so what did members of Congress do? The bill never even made it to the table because they declined to support it in fear of pissing off the Teamsters. 

capitol-building-picture

The consolation prize was a letter signed by only 51 members of Congress addressed to the new DOT Secretary Anthony Foxx regarding the fact that studies were not even completed before the FMCSA made a final ruling and pushed new HOS rules into place. Mr. Foxx in all of his wisdom replied stating that Anne Ferro and the FMCSA “completed collecting data at the end of July and it’s in the final stages of analysis”. What? Really Mr. Foxx, do you tie your shoes before you put them on sir? The new regulations were put into place before your accomplices at the FMCSA even had the data and you back them up on this and consider it proper rule-making. I guess your experience as a former Mayor has conditioned you to just sit back and go along with whatever the people under you claim to be the best method. here’s an idea, try using your brain here and inject a little bit of common sense into the equation. Maybe it has something to do with the fact that you, just like your friend Ferro in the FMCSA have zero real world experience in the trucking industry and like to cater to lobbyists. Maybe it is because you are just using the position you now hold as a stepping stone to further your political career. Either way it is nothing short of a completely asinine approach to handling real issues in a haphazard manner. 

We all know that the FMCSA will forge ahead without a second thought as to the concerns of drivers or for that matter the concerns of the Congress or Senate and the DOT will back their play without fail. This cycle has been going for years and the only way to stop it is with a complete housecleaning of both offices. However until that happens I do not see how any group or organization can possibly conceive this latest development as anything other than Congress trying to make it look good for the public without taking any real action to stop the repeated attacks on the trucking industry. Stop giving these people credit for passing a bill that nothing ever develops from. They passed Jason’s Law and what has that done other that disrespect Jason’s name for lack of action in implementing the details of the law. Stop stroking the ego’s of politicians and start telling them that nothing short of action will be accepted. Tell them to stop looking at trucks and start looking at the drivers who operate them, the human beings who are no less of a citizen than anyone else who votes in the elections that gave them a job in the first place. Once they take action and win something positive for professional drivers then fine, we’ll all give them kudos but until then its nothing more than lip service.

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Discussion

2 thoughts on “Drivers, Don’t Confuse Ego Stroking With Victory In Washington D.C.

  1. The answer to all of your questions is. OOIDA is in bed with the big trucking companies. The letters OOIDA, OUR ORGINAZATION ISN”T DOING ANYTHING. Infact that is true, at least not for the drivers.

    Posted by Chaplain Dean Smith | September 26, 2013, 6:12 pm
    • But it is so much more than OOIDA and blaming them for drivers not standing up for themselves isn’t entirely fair. Yes OOIDA does collect membership fees for fighting for drivers but can we honestly expect them to do 100% of the work?

      Posted by haggardon18 | September 26, 2013, 7:46 pm

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