Anti-ELD petition to White House launched; more voices on the mandate

| March 21, 2014

Word came in Thursday, March 20, from Tony Hensley to Overdrive‘s Facebook page that an electronic-logging-device-mandate petition was launched on the White House’s “We the People” website, created to serve as a platform for U.S. citizens to lobby the executive branch directly through petitions. Hensley was unsure of its origins, knowing only what’s publicly available information — that it was created March 19 by a resident of Lima, Ohio, with the initials D.N. The website’s privacy policy includes the withholding of full names. 


Logging device mandate could come in 2016, outlines hardware spec’s, harassment provisions

The rule addresses driver harassment protections, hardware specifications and hours of service-related supporting documents.

Language of the petition, which has a goal of 100,000 signatures collected by April 18, reflects voices of opposition among many Overdrive readers. While it uses the term EOBR rather than the ELD terminology of the mandate itself, it’s clearly targeted toward the recently-released proposal from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. Read more about the FMCSA proposal in stories linked throughout this post. 

“These devices do not make American highways or trucks any safer,” the petition reads. “Safety is achieved with proper training and education. These devices will only serve to force small trucking companies and independent truck drivers to close because they simply cannot afford the potential required equipment and subscription costs.”

You can read the full petition via this link.


New rule includes 8 ways to help prevent e-log harassment

FMCSA outlines eight proposed provisions to attempt to prevent driver harassment with ELDs. Congress and the courts directed FMCSA to include safeguards against driver harassment ...

Others objected to the devices, particularly when employed coupled with fleet-management capabilities, on driver-control and -harassment grounds. Recently retired trucker Elmer L. Rose of Lakeland, Fla., read James Jaillet’s story about the anti-driver harassment portion of FMCSA’s proposal with interest. Rose had recently severed ties with a company with whom he leased a truck. He “had a very hard time paying for” the first truck he’d leased “but finally paid it off. Then, I leased another truck and two weeks in, the company used e-logs against me to make me pick up a load I didn’t want to take,” he wrote. “If I hadn’t been able to pick it up early, I wouldn’t have been able to make it to a truck stop,” which he did but with just 11 minutes to spare on his drive time.

Ultimately, Rose felt pushed beyond his limits as a result of an aggressive effort on the carrier’s part to maximize drive time. It all resulted in his leaving the company and retiring. “I still have over $2,000 in my escrow account, and I think they will find a way to take that,” he wrote. “So I believe [the use of and mandate for ELDs] is nothing but a way for the trucking companies and the government to make more money off truckers.” 

More than 50 percent of respondents to a poll anticipating the ELD mandate earlier this month indicated a preference for retirement or another line of work over trucking with an electronic log. Not all Overdrive readers, however, were opposed: 1 in 4 indicated they would find a way to make it work or were running e-logs already. 

Find more coverage in this story about readers’ response to the proposed mandate. 

  • David S. McQueen

    As one who not only drives trucks but also has to audit Records of Duty Status (aka drivers’ logs), I welcome the ELDs. Sure, there will be problems, especially with the trucks we use (there are no assigned trucks) to get to job sites, not for hire. If I can get the workers to understand they have to log on and off duty and that the oil field exceptions apply and the “personal use” driving isn’t logged as driving time, why, it’ll be just easy as pie (sic). The issues have always been driving time and vehicle maintenance. I suggest our beloved government start over at the beginning and address those issues, instead of constantly adding new ones (such as the 30-minute mandatory break).

  • Obama

    I am against eld if the president stick one for himself and some for his family than I may consider rethinking about it.

  • miketrk1

    I am a small company of three trucks i only run 3 states most of the time we run back and fourth to la and escondido we do not need elds we are home by friday and do not go back untill monday this is money i do not need to spend since the feds gave the nafta trucks free money the should pay for mine if yhey want me to have one i can not compete with the large companys i do not call this a level playing field as ferro calls it my company has never failed any bit or the feds insp.

  • Rob

    David…You can use EOBR’s now. Just don’t force me to.

  • Keith Birmingham

    Like CSA, and every other piece of legislation involving the trucking industry in the past few years EOBR’s will do nothing but harm the industry until freight rates allow drastic changes in pay for those who are on the road.

  • MillionsOfMiles

    Why does it seem so much of the time that articles quote from drivers involved in lease-purchase scams. The dude above admits to volunteering not once but twice to get “victimized” by entering into a lease-purchase scam. I think this guy has a bigger problem than a mandated ELD/EOBR/what-ever the name du jour is.

  • concerning problem

    I am owner operator who drives 132miles each way . I get plenty of sleep and home everyday, off most weekends. Why should I be required to spend money I don’t have and that I could use for maintaining equipment. Sounds like communism ,

  • disappointed with govt

    I also am an o/o, have two trucks, several trailers, am doing daily runs, in compliance with all things, have been in roadside harassment stops, audits, an no violations,,
    I called on teletrac, got their input, $ 80. per unit, per month, times 12 is 960. per year,times 2 is 1920. per year for eld’s,, plus keeping the regular paper log as backup, now tell me this is progress, jus a way as stated by others to take away from those who do work an give to those pushin buttons,,, govt bureaucrats can’t even run their own jobs, possibly lives, yet their telling us how to handle our business,, time to rake a stand,

  • gearjammer2000

    really,for years a lot of us has said that we have to stick together to stop all this bullshit and all most have said is there is nothing we can do or we cannot afford to shut down for a week, or any other excuse not to get involved, well guess what.
    you reap what you sow.
    6 months ago I said enough is enough so after many,many years I have sold my trucks, and got as far away from trucking as I could!!
    let the ones that have drank the koolaid take what the government, companies, and brokers are dishing out,truckers today are not the people there were when I started, willing to stand up for each other, today they are for the most part mindless drones that believe whatever they are told,think you are making big money for all that hard work, get real the company spin is out of control.
    and do you believe it when the government says i am here to help you?
    trucking today is the biggest scam in the world

  • Gary Johns

    FMCSA we are sick of your shit and are not going to take it anymore!!!!!!

  • easymoney

    now your getting the big picture. communism is the
    way of life only difference is they hit your pocket.
    Everything is done in the name of safety an for our
    own good. what crap

  • easymoney

    amen gearjammer2000. I started driving in 68
    it was a honorable profession back than. now its
    like you say mindless drones. I retired from trucking
    in 2008

  • centerlaneshow

    The ELD former (EOBR) was designed by big trucking company’s to help monitor their drivers that are out to maximize their drive time. Its a management tool and should be considered as such. If company’s want them then fine let them use them but do not force it upon every trucking company out here. Most are too small and can NOT afford the price tag that will follow. I see this as a major move by government officials to wipe out the small trucking company’s to make the trucking industry more manageable and controllable. It wont be long once everyone is required to have one you will see them closing their doors one by one. So ultimately its the drivers fault for not banding together to try and stop it. Lack of proper education and training in our own back yard is to blame. I have decided to retire from driving because of the way the industry has changed plus a medical injury I received while driving. Now I host a radio show about our industry and these new rule in hoping to educate the uneducated. Oh by the way smaller trucking company’s with like 1 to 20 truck wont have the time to be self monitoring like the major trucking company’s so they will have to hire out side services to do that job. Major trucking company’s that self monitor will still be able to change their data with no one knowing.

  • band of brothers

    I am currently a company driver and use E logs. I like them because they are mindless and brainless and require no thought in what you are doing. But if you get into a position where you are held up at a shipper/consignee or any other circumstance you are boned. You go into violation and then get a nasty gram from your company asking why. I signed the petition because someday I am hoping to be an owner operator myself and don’t want the additional oversight nor the expense that these bring. Personally I think we should get this rule over turned and the 70hr rule over turned. And one more thing, they are talking about limiting the speed of EVERY commercial vehicle on the road. We NEED to band together to stop the over regulation of our industry!!

  • JJMcClure

    Lower insurance rates if it prevents accidents

  • JJMcClure

    you don’t get paid overtime so why would you work more than 11 hours

  • 4b

    My wife and I discussed other options for me last night….if I owned a fleet I would like the idea…but why when I run one truck and average 2000 miles a week???

  • 4b

    One thing that I see some of you fail to recognize…the big companies can’t haul it all and over 70% of the trucks in this country are fleets of 20 trucksor thing to remember, the megas can’t haul it all and a lot of guys will never work for them….a problem is coming…

  • Coffeeclue

    I think everyone here is barking at the wrong tree. I hate the idea of ELDs myself, but ELDs are simply enforcement tools for the rules that have been previously made. We should be fighting the rules themselves that give no exceptions to special situations such as being held up at the shippers or in traffic. Saying that ELDs are too expensive and that’s your grounds for not allowing them is BS. $600 plus $30/month subscription will not break anybody.
    I really have no problems with the rules themselves, but they have to have some “give”. I don’t think anyone should be driving more than 11 hours per day nor 70 hr/week, but if you’re at the end of the 70 hrs and 2 hours from home, you should be able to get home instead of spending your reset time at a rest area. It’s difficult to formulate an exact solution based on strict rules, but if a driver were allowed to violate the rules and accumulate violations points without impacting his record, this would be more fair. So, say you’re allowed 10 violations per month and beyond that you get an actual ticket, then ELDs would work. Any “extreme” violations such as driving more than 14 hours would result in an immediate ticket.

  • JPMinn

    ok people we can still sign this petition. click on the link here, set up your account and sign this. It needs ALOT more signatures by April 18th.

  • Einstyne

    I think that if the industry wants the recorders, they should also loose the exemption from the fair labor act, this would force a change in the way drivers are paid, the exemption came about because the trucking companies in the 50’s couldn’t keep track of driver hours.

    With ELD s they will be able to, then they would have to pay a fair wage for all time spent by the driver.

  • Coffeeclue

    Drivers are not paid on “time” basis. They are basically paid on commission basis. For some this means miles, for others this means percentage of the “take”. If you want to be an employee that’s paid by the hour, that’s the kind of job you should seek. You can find some trucking companies that pay by the hour as well. I’ for one, do not want to be paid by the hour because this limits my income.

  • ET

    Well, the bottom line is: EOBR should be a CHOICE NOT MANDATORY.

  • JC

    I do not like the eobr by no means but my biggest problem with is the 14 hour rule. The reason is when i get tired i will stop DO NOT CARE WHAT ANYONE says i have 3 little girls I am going to go home and see. Plus when ever traffic or weather is bad I can stop til it is better

    and safer. With paper logs i can stop and make it right with an eobr i can not stop and I will put everyone on the in danger. So if they get rid of the 14 hour start and stop BS I would be more willing to put something electric in my truck to follow me and make sure i dont work to long with out a break , without connecting to my engine.

  • Zachary Bell

    I have MANY concerning issues involving ELDs. First is the technology itself. The FMCSA proposal requires the ELD be physically linked (plugged in) to the truck’s ECM (as Qualcomm and PeopleNet do). New technology has come along that performs better than most of the current ELDs and requires only a GPS-enabled Smartphone. Two such systems currently exist. One is called XRS, the other is called BigRoad. XRS uses a black box that plugs into the ECM and a smartphone app that is run on a user’s mobile device.

    BigRoad is even simpler, as it only uses the phone’s GPS, no ECM link required. It works extremely well, and costs next to nothing to get.

    The second issue is the cost and reliability of the ELD. The cost for most true ELDs starts around $800, and quickly escalates especially if the ELD requires a complicated install (as many Qualcomm units do). I have seen the devices freeze up, fail, and not withstand the vibration in the cab. They seem to have similar teething problems to Ford’s ill-fated and controversial MyFord Touch system in many cases, because they are often set up as a FLEET MANAGEMENT SYSTEM… or in normal terms, the end-all, be-all system. GPS units and Smartphones are far more reliable than many of today’s ELDs, and are far less expensive.

    Then there’s the issue of driver harassment, which was addressed in a re-write of the rule, requiring the device to have the ability to be muted.

    I hope all the issues are addressed in the upcoming rule.

  • Zachary Bell

    I signed it already. We need many, many more!

  • Zachary Bell

    I agree. We should be fighting the rules. But we have to become stronger in order to do it and start standing up to bullies in the Government who obviously have big $$$ and big lobbyists in their back pockets. You know their names.

    Here in Illinois, we have an election coming up in November and that is the next chance to vote some of these bullies out. Sign the petition, make your voice heard, and do your civic duty to VOTE in the next election!

  • Zachary Bell

    I’m in the 70%… and TWO huge problems are coming. The first is the rule itself not keeping up with technology. The second is the enforcement of the rules.

    For example, the rule, as it is written, requires an ELD with a PHYSICAL link to the ECM (in the form of a data cable). Two companies (XRS and BigRoad) have apps that don’t require that cable connection, instead using Bluetooth or a device’s built-in GPS to provide automatic duty-status recording capabilities.

    Second, the ELD is an enforcement tool for Hours of Service. However, with rules as vague as they are and how often they change in some cases, the ELD vendors have difficulty keeping up with the rule changes.

    Add those two issues up and drivers will be quitting their jobs, retiring and going to other careers OR they will learn the system (with difficulty) and hopefully figure everything out.

  • RichieC

    The entire micro managing of grown peoples work day, when they get tired , when they need and may take breaks without a penalty, when it affects their incomes and ability to pay their bills and mortages as demanded by the FMCSA is a formula for disaster and cumulitivly forces drivers to work longer and in more tired states than without the mandates. When a driver has a choice of 1. take a break and miss the electric bill because he , by taking the break misses the NEXT days pay, or 2. taking a break when he gets fatigued without a penalty the choice that will be made is simple……KEEP THAT TRUCK MOVING LEST YOU RUN OUT OF TIME …TIRED OR NOT…AND KEEP IT MOVING FAST. DAM THE TORPEDOS…FULL SPEED AHEAD. The only question is, along side the eobr mandate is…..where is the minumum pay mandate for drivers so they can work without the stress of dealing with traffic and delays…and their financial ramifications. Costs for consumers will rise dramiticly as drivers demand more pay as NOONE cept the bottom of the barrell will enter a trade where you are penalized for following rules….while everyone around you…actualy knows day to day they will work the next day…and thus be able to paty their bills. REVOLUTION !!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • RichieC

    Its true that the govt hates truckers. Remember that the trucking industry can shut the country down. Remember they jailed Hoffa for getting to powerfull. There is a three day supply of food and a 1 day supply of fuel. The replenishment of those supplys depends on truckers….so why would govt not want to controll, with an iron fist, the truckers. The question is….what kind of truckers will the country wind up with…and who will police the food lines, stop the rioting, at the empty supermarkets?

  • RichieC

    just a thought….mabye the food riots can be supressed with the billion bullets bought by homeland security a few years ago.

  • RichieC

    WOW…you got problems….try hiring drivers who can understand english and /or have IQ’s over 63. oh…sorry….they would demand real pay….instead of coolie wages……

  • RichieC

    Let me guess…”driver #93785658349037846756848 you are in hos violation. Please explain why, and stop earning money for paying your mortage immediatly. Driver, also remember you are here only to ensure shippers and consignees have somthing to load and unload or sell and not to actualy earn a living for yourself and your family.” Is that what the nasty gram sounds like?

  • Tom T

    Same here. Started in 67. We got a lot of
    respect, helped each other out and
    simply said “pass it on” and not only was
    it challenging, we even had fun. You
    could roll into a truck stop and it was
    like being with guys you knew all your
    life and the waitresses and truck stops
    treated you like kings. Today, it`s get
    your fuel and get out and you can`t
    park here overnight. De-regulation
    ruined this industry. Left the industry
    in 2010 and I don`t miss any of it.

  • Tom T

    You have got it. Their lobbyists have the
    money and the influence to command the
    the market place with government regs.
    That is what de-regulation was all about.
    I met a shipper who told me a sales rep.
    from a major trucking company offered
    him 6 months of free freight for a five
    year contract. Try to compete with that
    and by the way when was the last time
    you heard of a major trucking company
    being taken to the wood shed for safety

  • Spence

    You’re right on target Richie. The best thing that could happen is for every truck nationwide to simply shut down for at least a week or more. Don’t protest by blocking roads and bridges or run a “Rubber Duck Convoy” to Washington D.C. either. Just park the trucks and let em sit. Let the weekend warriors go about their merry way and do what they want. When people start getting stranded here and there, don’t have enough gas in their tank to get back home, can’t buy any because everyone’s out, and the grocery stores and convenience stores run out of food, then maybe, just maybe people and politicians will finally wake up. I’ve been thinking this way all along.

  • jojo

    Depends on how the hourly rate is established.
    Today, because Co OTR Drivers are exempt from the min wage, the mega co’s dictate Drivers wages and this keeps Freight Rates Low.

  • jojo

    As I understand it, Federal Election Day is November 4th, 2014.

    I have notified my Congressman and have let them know that I am and will be encouraging ALL DRIVERS TO REGISTER and Then TO VOTE.

    This Means That ALL Drivers Need to be at Home on or around Tuesday, October 31th 2014 in preparation to cast THEIR BALLOT.


    If by chance there are ZERO TRUCKS on the road THE WEEK OF 10/31/14 thru 11/7/14 because the DRIVERS ARE EXERCISING THEIR LEGAL RIGHT TO VOTE then I believe a MESSAGE WOULD HAVE BEEN SENT.

    I would encourage ALL of you to Help others understand the IMPORTANCE of these issues.
    1. Drivers Wages
    2. ELD’s
    3. Speed Limiters
    4. HOS
    5. Parking
    6. CSA
    7. Over Size / Overweight Trucks
    8. Immigration
    9. Cross Border Trucking
    10. Insurance

    Co. Drivers have their own sets of issues. I would ask that they take advantage of this “Shutdown To Vote” action to bring their issues to the fore-front of their carriers. Drivers need to inform their carriers that they will be taking personal time during the week of 10/31 thru 11/7.

    By doing so now, they can legitimately shut down after delivering their load.

    Understand Drivers you will only have Job Security if you act in Mass.

  • jojo

    Three ways to send a message
    1. Inform your carrier and Congressman that you will be taking off at least 3 days during the week of 10/31 thru 11/7.
    2.Register to Vote and then start making calls to your elected officials in DC. Call 202-224-3121 and inform them of your issues.
    3. VOTE. I’m Shutting my truck DOWN 11/31 thru 11/7 TO MAKE SURE THAT MY VOICE IS HEARD!!! Why don’t you all Join Me!

  • mousekiller

    We did pretty well back in the day of 8 hr off to fulfill the berth rule. We got the job done. We elped people out with car problems. We helped each otyer out. We demanded little from any one but respect. We got the respect. Proof is the term that was bestowed upon us. “Knights of the Road”. That was an honor. A badge proclaiming us to be Safe, Proficient. Dedicated.Trustworthy.. I miss the good old days and would be glad to have my old 68 Pete back. Yes! we stood together in more ways than one. We were a brotherhood of family men. Brothers, Husbands and sons and a few females thrown in there too.We were a team. We got the job done. Today is the day that the world of trucking is standing still. No-one is moving forward to better it. Sheeple have taken over and assumed the newly created title and job of seat warmer and steering wheel holder. I would like to work at least 2 more years but have a feeling that will not come to pass.

  • mousekiller

    Sorry to bust your bubble. Due to the type of freight I haul the EOBR for me is $4200 and it keeps going up.. Not worth it due to depressed rates throughout the industry. If I only need 5 1/2 to 6 hrs of sleep a night to function safely, Why do I need to sit for 5 more hours getting tired waiting for my 10 to culminate? Why do I need to take off nearly 50 hours to gain the 34? ( depending on when you began the 34)

    We already have more regulations on us than Airline Pilots do.

  • mousekiller

    Answer= dumpster divers holding the steering wheel and barely warming the seat is going to be what is left after the safe professional drivers find other places to excel.

  • Coffeeclue

    I’ve never heard of EOBR being dependent on the type of freight ona hauls. Do you have any links on this? In any case, you misunderstood my point. You are fighting against EOBR, where you should be fighting against the rules that it enforces. Having a law that is not being enforced is silly. We simply need a law we can all live with. Unfortunately, there is no test for being tired and most truckets would drive tired if allowed. This is unsafe, so what’s your reasonable solution?

  • James P. Lamb

    Is opposition to the new electronic logging proposal grounded in truckers being upset this removes their ability to squirm out of HOS regs, fudge log books & falsify business records (commit fraud)?

    Vote here:

  • jojo

    As an OO I have to much at stake to run down the road illegally.

    Conducting daily business Includes buying fuel (time stamp) passing by numerous scales (time stamps) toll roads (time stamps) shippers & receivers (video, time stamps, bills of laden) license plate readers (time stamps, location) mobile telephone and internet service (time stamps & location) gps on trl (time stamp & location) etc.

    Sir, if your wife runs a stop sign and slams into me and your kid in the back seat is killed it is I, Pat Hockaday, that will lose EVERYTHING and GO TO JAIL if I am not legal. In other words, your wife’s illegal actions has killed your kid and destroyed my life and that of my families.

    You probably believe that We Drivers make “The Big Bucks” as advertised on TV. This is TOTALY FALSE.

    SQUIRM, these Drivers that make your life livable/possible and do so at GREAT SACRIFICE! They Are Not SQUIRMING

    I am not a CRIMINAL or a second class citizen. I am innocent UNTIL proven GUILTY.

    I find it demeaning and degrading to my character that I am obviously a LIAR or that I am to stupid to tell Time or Draw a Line just because I’m a Driver. I am perfectly capable of doing my JOB and do not require a Computer to do MY JOB FOR ME.

    I spend 330+ days a year serving this Nation and I need to be allowed to conduct Personal business just as any other Law Abiding Citizen and that means that I need to be Able to Use MY Personal Vehicle, a 2013 KW to do so. Personal Conveyance Rules are antiquated and vague to say the least.

    The 14hr rule and shortage of parking make it difficult to shop, bank or even go to a movie. When you get off work you have freedom to live. These laws and devices have made me a Slave.

    May I suggest that ALL citizens, in the name of safety, have personal implants so that Uncle Sam will know the exact location of each of US. Why stop with Drivers.

    Could to be that they are only STARTING with Drivers?

    I offer YOU a week with Me in MY Truck so that you may truly understand the trials and tribulations these Honest and Hard Working Men and Women endure daily so that you may enjoy life with the family.

    Pat Hockaday

    Drivers, people like this haven’t a clue. It’s these People, out of ignorance, that fear trucks. It’s OK for them to Control US through their VOTE as they only believe that WE are out here to get in their way.

    My truck WILL be Shut Down 10/31 thru 11/7. Will YOU Join Me?

  • jojo

    Just signed it. About 98,000 more.

  • jojo

    government by the wealthy.
    • a country or society governed in this way. • an elite or ruling class of people whose power derives from their wealth.

  • g

    More and More monitoring devices will be installed to Observe the criminal truck driver….the “old days” are gone……you will resign yourself to being a Roboton….or retire… will get MORE rediculous every year. CAMERAS watching the driver are next……..face it…..its over.

  • mousekiller

    Brief and to the point. Well said. Jojo

  • mousekiller

    I doubt it will take a week. Another thing to consider.If no one went to CA and no one hauled any produce in or out there would be millions of dollars of crops plowed under. That would wake up the crooks in Sacramento and then the clowns in DC would realize they are next.. Company drivers won’t / can’t sit due to losing their jobs but O/O’s have the power to do this. strives to maintain an open forum for reader opinions. Click here to read our comment policy.