ATA sides with agency over use of electronic logs

| February 28, 2012

American Trucking Associations is supporting the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s defense of electronic onboard recorders against a suit filed by the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association.

ATA filed an amicus brief Feb. 24 with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Washington, D.C. Seventh Circuit. “ATA supports the use of electronic logging devices, which have demonstrated the ability to improve carriers’ compliance with FMCSA’s hours-of-service regulations,” ATA President and CEO Bill Graves said. “With this filing, we urge the Court to reject the calls to prevent fleets from using these powerful compliance tools.”

OOIDA had filed a motion Jan. 19 asking the court to direct FMCSA to “cease and desist from authorizing, sanctioning or in any way encouraging” using the devices to increase hours of service compliance until the agency issues a rule ensuring the devices will not be used to harass drivers.

The same court ruled for OOIDA last August, vacating the agency’s 2010 rule that would have mandated EOBRs on all trucks used by certain non-compliant carriers. It stated the rule had not met statutory requirements, namely, a federal regulation stipulating FMCSA ensure these devices are not used to “harass vehicle operators.”

  • Barry J. Zeringue


  • John S

    I think electronic logs are a good thing to put everyone on the same level. Trouble is that level is probably not a very profitable one for many. I myself prefer to run legal. But I accept the fact that running legal means a significant drop in income at times. it also means turning down a decent paying load because of hours not available. Not every driver can simply do this. Many drivers only way to make more money is to run more miles. legally or not.

  • Gordon A

    We have to remember that the ATA is an organizations made up of dues paying members NO different than OOIDA is for DRIVERS.
    The ATA is looking out for their members too.So they say. The difference is that we do not as members of OOIDA have 10’s of millions of dollars to work with. Just smarter people behind us. More vocal and more involved.
    Ray LaHood spouts that the EOBR’s will make our highways safer. I don’t see how, as that will not stop tailgating, speeding, improper lane changes and other unsafe driving practices. It will however restrict your earnings and BIG brother is going to see your EVERY move. Stop for 5 minutes to pee. They will know it. To do on board logging as they want is to have you under complete surveillance. Don’t believe me? go back to the beginning of this EOBR fiasco and you will see that they “the ATA & FMCSA” want to have cameras installed in the truck cab to watch you the whole time you are behind the wheel and on duty.
    You don’t hear much about that do you?
    If it is a company truck your driving they can do it and you either except it or find some other line of employment.

  • Eric Polhill

    Not necassarily true. Refrigerated LTL delivers 24 hours a day and you get in when the receiver gives you an appointment, not when it’s conveniant for the carrier. A more flexible and user and friendly HOS rule is all that is needed for most to comply. Say a split sleeper birth rule. A one size fits all rule will never work for such a broad industry. Some how the general public and FMCSA think all trucks run from coast to coast only stopping once to load and once to unload. Not so. All the EOBR’s in the world can’t cure that. I personaly only run about 2500 miles a week in 5 days but make 10 to 12 stops. 2500 miles, easy to log legaly. 10 to 12 stops, not so much

  • Gordon A

    Eric Polhill ,
    You make a very good point.
    Driving is one thing but the other duties are a different item all together. Split sleeper berth solves a multitude of potential problems.
    Good post .

  • Danie Stepanic

    I drove across US for many years and i loved it. I m in Europe from 2009 and electronic logs are bed for small company no money. U fight for your right

  • Kevin P

    EOBR are just another way to infringe on our right to privacy. If we sit back and do nothing, BIG government will slowly take away every right we have. The trucking industry is the safest it has ever been. Please leave us alone and let us do our job, so you will have all the things you need at home and on the dinner table to sustain you !!!

  • Brett Schmidt

    EOBRs should only be required for Carriers that have had repeated safety issues. This is just 1 more push by Pro Union organizations to force there employers to pay drivers for time sitting in a coffee shop

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