More Calls to Push Back ELD Compliance Date
As the deadline for truckers to switch from paper logs to electronic logging devices nears, the heated discussion about ELD Compliance between the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and truckers continues.
With under 12 weeks to go until the deadline, the Owner Operator Independent Drivers Association is leading a coalition that is asking for the mandate to be delayed for two more years.The delay would occur as a result of passing the ELD Extension Act of 2017 (HR 3282).
OOIDA is calling for a delay in the implementation of the mandate due to concerns surrounding the reliability of self-certified ELDs, connectivity issues in rural areas, cyber-security vulnerabilities, and the availability of data for law enforcement.
OOIDA argues that the mandate can be delayed without any negative consequences as well due to the belief that these devices do not offer more reliability when compared to paper logs for the recording of driving time.
Other organizations that are a part of the coalition are not sitting back and letting OOIDA do all the fighting. The Agricultural Retailers Association recently asked the Department of Transportation and the current White House Administration to delay the mandate for at least one year.
According to Richard Gupton, the Senior Vice President of Public Policy for the ARA, numerous agricultural businesses will not be able to meet the deadline. Gupton also states his concern that manufacturers of ELDs might not have the ability to accommodate Hours of Service exemptions that are used by agricultural businesses.
The ARA did not end their arguments there. As with other organizations in the coalition, they believe that the process of self-certification will result in a misleading market. By leaving the responsibility of certification up to manufacturers, any manufacturer can claim that their device is FMCSA-certified. Because of this, these organizations are calling for a strict process that would need to be completed in order for an ELD to be certified.
Although a large number of organizations are calling for the mandate to be delayed, not all trucking businesses hold the same belief. The Trucking Alliance for Driver Safety and Security is a main opponent for the coalition. Lane Kidd, the Managing Director of the Trucking Alliance, argues that ELDs will undoubtedly reduce driver fatigue and the number of tracking accidents that occur yearly. He calls upon the fact that the mandates were continuously upheld in federal courts and Congress as evidence that the facts are in favor of the mandate improving driving conditions for truckers.
Regardless of how you feel about the transition from paper logs to ELDs, recent studies are showing that the industry has a long way to go before the conversion will be complete. A study conducted by C.J. Driscoll & Associates found that 60% of drivers logged their driving hours through paper logs, with the majority of those not having a plan to use ELDs by the December 18th deadline.
For more information about the approaching ELD Compliance Deadline, please visit: https://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/ELD