Electronic log rule on the horizon, says FMCSA admin

| March 14, 2013

eobr electronic logA new electronic log rule could be proposed by September, said Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration head Anne Ferro Thursday, March 14, at a congressional hearing, testifying to a House subcommittee.

The Highways and Transit Subcommittee — part of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure — questioned Department of Transportation administration heads for two and a half hours wanting updates on progress made to rules and initiatives in the MAP-21 highway funding law from last summer.

The law requires that an electronic onboard recorder (electronic log) rule be made by the time the law expires in mid-2014.

Ferro was questioned by the subcommittee’s chairman Rep. Thomas Petri (R-Ore.) about potential issues of trying to squeeze every driver’s schedule into what he called 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 said uniformity has been a big issue for FMCSA in making the rule, but that uniformity is a must to “ensure a level playing field.” She also said that most companies who switch find electronic logs to be “effective and profitable,” and that most drivers “over time” prefer EOBRs to paper logs.

She was also pressed by Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.) about the problems presented by detention time to hours of service rules and what the agency plans to do about it.

A study is underway, Ferro said, and the agency is expecting results by 2015.

For the full story on the hearing — including more on questions about hours of service, EOBRs and truck weight and size limits — see Overdrive sister site CCJ‘s article.

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  • http://www.facebook.com/michael.ridley.90 Michael Ridley

    less freedom as the only way to insure profit is teams or slipseat operations pretty much kills the lone o/o

  • Vee

    Wonder how much money she’s getting to spout off such statements as “Ensure a level playing field”??

  • http://www.facebook.com/william.mckelvie William McKelvie

    Well she is back to her old bagatricks …………. not much new here to see or hear …….. wonder if we will ever get back to real trucking ……… she is gonna get a hellofa shock when her two periods of 1 am to 5 am rule goes into effective enforcement, just as the rest of the sheep who believe this is best for trucking as well ………….

  • EF

    My prior criticisms of all current EOBR proposals have not be refuted or even addressed. As for Anne Ferro and her ”level playing field’ comment…… yeah that’s right it’s not really about safety is it A.Ferro? It’s a business propostion, not safety, and you’re admitting it everytime you say ”level playing field.” Wow! How stupid are these congressmen? O wait, they’re all just a bunch of actors pretending like they’re sincerely trying to address the issue! Truth be told they’re all in on it. And who do you think Anne Ferro is? She is the former head of the Maryland Trucking Association. And what do all these state associations fall under? Answer; the American Trucking Association! Now you know who writing your rule and regulations….. Just like Enron wrote cap&trade and the insurance companies wrote obamacare, the truck lobbies are writing transportation policy. And it goes on and on whether the democrates or republicans are in charge!!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/jwebb.kline J Webb Kline

    I had a Verizon Wireless sales lady visit my office trying to sell us on EOBRS. Her sales pitch was, “You may as well get on board, because it will be law in 2014.” I explained to her that there was still much opposition and debate. She told me, “Verizon has invested $1.2 billion in EOBR technology. I can promise you that this didn’t happen without a guarantee from the federal government.” Safety, my butt. When are people going to realize that cronyism is the problem, and the only thing that is going to stop this madness is to throw all 545 of them out and start over with new rules that include long-term incarceration of any politician caught taking a bribe or bribing, from one another or from corporate lobbyists in exchange for policy votes? When was the last time a new regulation was instituted solely upon its merits? 50 years ago, perhaps?

  • John Ryan

    I had about convinced my wife to buy another truck and get back on the road. Will I now have no interest in trucking again with the EOBRS about to go into every truck on the road. When we stopped driving we had then never obeyed the HOS. We had a very simple rule on our truck, when we were tired we pulled over, End of story. We as you know could drive as a team up to 22 hrs. A day. Sounds good till you understand it has to be done in a specific time frame. I said in the beginning we would follow our own time frame and would stop when we tire and to helll with the DOT. So yes we cheated on our logs, but not to drive more, to rest more. Nothing we ever hauled was worth our lives or killing someone else. Fatigue comes at any time in the driver’s day, it may come after 1 hr. or 10 hr. that’s something no one has any control over. It simply has to be up to the driver to know when to get off the road. No one in Gov. or anywhere else can make a rule to force the few morons who keep going in spite of the risk to stop. If teams could go back to 5 on 5 off driving would be a lot less tiring and less tiring means safer for everyone. So back to the EOBRS what the helll do u do when your out of time and you’re in one of those many truck stops that’s full and running over?? Your EOBS is counting your time spent running around and around the lot trying to find a space to park. These EOBRS will cost the whole industry a lot less drive time and remember less drive time for all means increased freight cost for everyone. Freight will not go up and the big cos. Will get more Gov. Incentives and the big businesses will take all control. And this will be done through you’re great Gov. of the people, by the people, for the people. Hahahaha what a joke there gonna use your tax dollars to help run you outta business. Pissssss on trucking!!!!

  • Vocalone

    I am a single owner Motor Carrier and “Ferro -you are not speaking for me and the 100K plus single owner Motor Carrier like me that choose not to grow more that one truck, and that probably only run 1 -3 loads per week, and take a week off each month.” Single owner Motor Carrier like me maintain our trucks better than the Big Bot trucking companies. We also have a better driver/MC safety record. So “Ferro” before you open your mouth do your research (are you not leaving your post? What were your accomplishments for that big paycheck you get? Did you do anything to make a positive impact on my single owner Motor Carrier company?) -I cannot afford a EBOR system. I rather put that money into maintaining my truck. Why don’t you make a positive impact and EXEMPT all single owner operator Motor Carrier companies like myself from EBOR, HOS, etc.? Why don’t you be the voice for us? If you were then we could say there’s a level playing field “exempting the small guys and regulating the big guys -just by comparing our P&L’s you could see that your actions, the FMCSA/Dot/Government, and all trucking/broker associations are forcing the small guys like me out of business. This is not fair, and it is not the American way. So the level playing field you talk about is for the Big Trucking companies that have enough money to lobby and compromise so they can rake in profits -more changes and tougher rules and enforcement don’t make them safer because they have enough money to pay for fatality lawsuits and keep rolling. For all of us single owner operator Motor Carrier companies -we need to march on Capital Hill, in front of the White House and get on TV to let our voices be heard. In the meantime while we are doing this, shippers won’t have enough capacity to move their freight, and the BIG Boy companies won’t have anywhere enough capacity to take up the slack. This is how we screw them. Make everyone including the consumer use newspaper instead of toilet paper -toilet paper is sitting on the dock waiting for the little guy to deliver it. Anyway is we did this, rates would go up, shipper will lean towards doing business with us and not the Big Trucking company/Trucking Associations courtship that tries to shut us down. Remember if there are 100K single owner Motor Carrier companies out there then that 100K single owner Motor Carrier that have a BETTER SAFETY RATING, and 0 LOSS RUN with our Insurance Carrier. Food for thought -they said there will never be a Black President, and then there was, and it is called “CHANGE.” So maybe there is a first time that single owner Motor Carrier can effect “CHANGE” by marching on Capital HIll, and letting our voices be heard we need to get up, stand up, march and let our voices be heard -that we want CHANGE. Short of that we’re the ones with a negative attitude that still say there will never be a Black President even though we have one. What reality are we living in? We can make a change and shut the Big Trucking companies down and make FMCSA back down on their elaborate ideas and bring them back to reality and let them know that trucking is about a level playing field for the small man and not the big guys. We the single owner Motor Carrier companies need to call for trucking to be regulated again rates, 40 hour work weeks, defined operating radius, and make the shippers bear the cost. Deregulation never worked for the trucking industry as it did for telecommunications.

  • Dave

    I had to sell my truck and come off the road for a while. I signed up to get Overdrive to keep up on whats going on. Thanks to the masterminds in the White House. I may have to ignore the screws in my back. And by another truck before i lose everything. But, by the looks of things. May not to be any good. I’ll be paying more fines than anything. They can stick that electronic log crap. And along with the new taxes they are wanting to add to what we already pay.And wetbacks.How about Somalians. Federal Regulations state. You must be able to read,understand,write,speak english clearly. Come to my city.The Somalians are gave money to start their own trucking company and houses.You can’t understand none of them. I’d never stick up for non American. But our American truckers need to take a page out of the Canadian Truckers book. When they want something and strike. THEY STRIKE!NOT ON A WEEKEND WHEN EVERYONES HOME. THEY SHUTDOWN THE BORDERS AND EVERYTHING ELSE. UNTIL THEY GET THE ATTENTION THEY WANT.I thank they should stay up there. But not my point.

  • Terry Massey

    I will cancel my Verizon at the end of the month. We have to vote with our dollars.

  • F U

    It already feels like jail. Y can’t u guys just leave us alone dam!!! That comes out I’m done with this gay as trucking. Go F**** ur self government. It’s all about money u shady bastards. F U

  • ilovdieselsmoke

    I picked up my first copy of OVERDRIVE in 1965 with Mike Parkhurst as the out spoken editor/publisher of this magazine. About the same time I started hauling cattle from my uncles ranch in Florida with a model H cab-over Mack, then graduated to a GMC Cracker box powered by a 238 Detroit hauling citrus to New York in a 38 foot Black Diamond trailer. Over the years I’ve hauled everything from nitro to live blue crabs! WOW, all the years , all the miles, all the changes, all the good times I’ve witnessed but NO more! Never thought I would see the day when America’s professional driver was replaced by day laborers who couldn’t speak a word of English or horrific cheap freight rates that paid only thirty cents above the cost of fuel sadly with an abundance of fools more than willing to stand in line to take those sorry loads. We’ve really disappeared down a slippery hill fellow drivers. I don’t see how trucking will ever climb back to the top ten of respected professions ever again in my lifetime. Anne Ferro is nothing more than a talking puppet for the American Trucking Association. She’s doing a jam up job for her handlers at the ATA but not for the American trucker. The real backbone of this industry who they’re determined to kill off. She’s just another who’ll retire with her government pension as most do and become one more paid consultant for the motor carrier dinner club. Transportation is in distress in this country but it never ceases to amaze me that these incredibly smart business types cannot simply figure out the reason why good people will not remain in trucking only to make minimum wages.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1269137418 Mike Jones

    Best idea is to burn your CDL so you are not tempted to go back to this idiotic industry..as you see it is becoming MORE of a pain everyday…let some sucker go fool around with all this B.S. The stress is a nightmare…and all the new “kiddies” driving..out of a school may get ya killed! Who knows what they are going to do? They cant even PARK without ripping your front end off!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1269137418 Mike Jones

    Yep it has become disgusting for sure!

  • http://www.facebook.com/dalekirschbaum Dale Kirschbaum

    fmcsa even says it’s about leveling the playing field and has nothing to do with saftey

  • Debbie54

    so true, happen to my husband, and dont forget the times that the kiddies ask for help while parking or backing up……….

  • Jimmbuds

    With the EOBR I dont see being able to make money beyond breaking even. And thats with a truck that is paid for. If you are going to mandate EOBR’s you need to address detention time, address rates and make it a level playing field for us small operators when compared to the big ones. That means we get fuel and tires as cheap as they do. Higher rates, detention time, cheap fuel and tires then sure I am for EOBR’s less work more rest and BS to deal with. But it comes as a package deal. As I mentioned at the beginning I dont see making any profit with EOBR’s, I am not going to lie I mess with my log book a LITTLE bit, and as it is now I can barely cut a 10% profit. With the EOBR you are talking about 0 or even going into the red? I am out here to make a living and have a business that suceeds. I dont mind the EOBR’s but you have to fix everything else otherwise alot of people are going to go hungry. According to that, dare I say president up there, he says “Small businesses are the backbone of America.” Well not fixing all these issues will lead to BIG BUSINESS BEING THE BACKBONE OF AMERICA!!!

  • lakestreetpete

    we voted the stupid bastards in we’ll damn sure vote em out maybe it time to pull the keys out of our rigs and show those mental midgets in washington that the truckers of america are sick and tired of there damn rules and regs. after all do they think there fancy steaks just walk to the stores and the gas there limo’s take just bubbles up from the ground at the pumps people of america don’t you think it’s time to take our country back

  • Jimmbuds

    I am all for a strike, the problem is everyone has to be a part of it. You will never get everyone to do it.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1269137418 Mike Jones

    They are all B.S. Artists….all this Jive Lingo…while they ram this crap down America’s throat…all LIES! Allways!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1269137418 Mike Jones

    Yep she is a Talking Puppet….this industry is forever changed……and is going to get Worse..not Better…

  • Dingus P

    Once again, the government has let the cat out of the bag, so that some Senator’s dumb brother, who cant make an honest living, can now make million selling these stupid things.. Just remember, “I’m from the government and I’m here to help”….

  • E B

    Funny how they say if they can save one life all is worth it. Then they say they want better economy from trucks be green. So if you slowed down to get better fuel economy and drive longer to make your daily mileage , now you will drive faster because we know the trend isnt more money for slower service. Bang the heads together

  • http://www.facebook.com/brian.dolivier Brian Dolivier

    Ask for help my ass… .. they want you to do it for them. On another note….I watched a US express driver run a pick-up pulling a trailer off the road in NE. When I called the saftey dept. They wanted the exact time of the incident inorder to make sure they addressed the right driver. I wasthen informed that it was two students driving together. Two student running team……OMFG.. .really….and they damm near killed atleast 2 people, and there’d have been a bigger mess as I was right there in the middle of it all with no where to go. All I can say is WOW this is what has become of a once great industry

  • P. McNeal

    Level playing field my ass Ann Ferro, your just another bought off politician of the ATA, and Verizon and any other Corp. who is trying to sell their million dollar products to the trucking business by calling it safety. Safety my ass, it’s a money racket. Just look at all these young kids just out of school and teaching other kids how to drive, mainly with the large ATA member carriers that don’t get pulled into the weight station, they get the bypass light, they don’t get pulled over along side of the road for random inspection either. Just go into a truckstop and walk around and look at these carriers, bald tires, chunks taken out the side walls of the steering tires, and another one I found with the brake shoes and drum missing on one of it’s trailer axles, and you call this a level playing field. Blow that smoke up somebody else’s ass. The CVSA was needed 25 years ago, I agree, but now that the trucking industry got it’s act together, it’s another government agency that got to big and out of control. So here’s another safety issue you created, you just got another driver with 35 years of driving experience and nearly 4 million miles off the road. Good luck brother’s and sister’s in trucking, I can say it use to be fun and rewarding and also respected.

  • http://www.facebook.com/daniel.kupke1 Daniel Kupke

    Yeah one of those kids out here in Vegas just the nite before last got all tanked up (drunk) n took his 18whlr down 15 going south in the north bound lane and hit a 4 whlr !!!!!!!!!!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1269137418 Mike Jones

    She told them “drivers find electro logs “Profitable”..no…they are an ignorant waste of time…..you wont make ANY money with that tattle tale in your truck…..it will incriminate the drivers in small fleets….ya need loose leaf….that ya can falsify and throw in the trash when necessary!! Freight was delivered “effectively” thruout history without a satelie monitored system…….soon they will have a Robot driving the truck…he wont have to sleep…no need for electro logs…..lol.

  • ilovdieselsmoke

    ((Ferro said uniformity has been a big issue for FMCSA in making the rule,but that uniformity is a must to “ensure a level playing field.” She also said that most companies who switch find electronic logs to be “effective and profitable,” and that most drivers “over time” prefer EOBRs to paper logs.))

    OK, the buzzzzzz word here for level playing field Ferro referred to is (volume),, That’s right, the fleet term hauling in volume where all rates are a back haul.. At the end of the day a fleet with twenty-two hundred power units makes $45.00 above all other cost including paying their driver they’ve made $99,000 in profit. How many O/Op’s can clear $45.00 at the end of the day & still be in business this time next week?

    The buzzzzzz word for ” most drivers prefer
    EOBRs to paper logs” is (Zombies-the walking brain dead-or a clear second choice preferred by most big fleets would be undocumented worker placed behind the wheel)!!!!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/jojo.klemm.1 JoJo Klemm

    Abolish Hours of Service, now. We can’t afford this load of crap, interfering with our nights+days+weeks–it never stops. All of those involved can surely find something more useful to do.

  • http://www.facebook.com/jojo.klemm.1 JoJo Klemm

    $1.2 Billion. Who’s going to pay for that?

  • http://www.facebook.com/jojo.klemm.1 JoJo Klemm

    And how did Hours of Service work for that? Abolish it forever.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1269137418 Mike Jones

    Yea..and they do Have the Ann Ferro electo logs….but they cant drive!! Too Funny….lol.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1269137418 Mike Jones

    Experts..no doubt…

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1269137418 Mike Jones

    Its more about leveling everyone OFF the playing field except the Mega Fleets……..

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1269137418 Mike Jones


  • Bob X

    Amen to that. I had a girl back into the side of my trailer in an empty, well lighted parking lot. I was the only other truck there, legally parked. Then she took off & later denied hitting anything. Go figure.

  • Bob X

    good term, electro logs

  • David

    So why didn’t the old farts stop deregulation ?hasnt o o I d a been screaming since its inception about running legal? Now that we have a chance to run legal with proof positive that we don’t have the hours and they say we don’t
    Ike the electronics. So I go back to the so called brotherhood. Did they stop deregulation, cdl transition,why didn’t they stick together? How many drivers or owner operators know there numbers? I’m on electronic logs and have no problems with them” I drove over 1900 miles from Thursday to Monday and still had 8 hrs left, then they gave me a 1200 mile to stretch over a couple of days. Why do you need to run 24 hrs a day? Lots of drivers aren’t disciplined enough to stop and take a break! We were all kids at once .

  • greek9014

    Then they should not worry about EOBRs untill they know what they well do about detention time and all the other things .;

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1269137418 Mike Jones

    Yep its alevel field for the Mega fleet…they drop trailers at the shipper..and they insist on large Windows for pu and del time……the little guy can not compete at all….he sits in the lot and the hours tick away on his electro log…..it’s not LEVEL at all……benefits the RICH and drives the small competion Out of Business. Surprise!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1269137418 Mike Jones

    They are Good at making a Run for it!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1269137418 Mike Jones

    Funny and True!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1269137418 Mike Jones

    Oh yea…shipper and receiver will hold you up forever and your electro log just keeps on ticking..soon you are totally screwed…could be out of hours when they FINALLY get it unloaded…then you are driving around hunting for a place to take a 10 hour break..and you are in violation!

  • EF

    Yes that is right and the hypocrisy irritates me to high heaven. Because there was a time they cheated and got away with it. In his book BAD SAMARITANS The Myth of Free Trade and the Secret History Of Capitalism, economist Ha-Joon Chang makes referance to ”Friedrich List” who surmised or should i say postulated the following: ”It is a very common device that when anyone has attained the summit of greatness, he kicks away the ladder by which he has climbed up in order to deprive others of the means of climbing up after him….”

  • EF

    Chang goes on to say what these corporatists are basically saying can be summed up in this calculation; ”DO AS WE SAY, NOT AS WE DID.” Another words we acheived are riches no we need to tighten the noose on others trying to get rich. ”Pull up the draw bridge.” Of course there is so much more it’s shameful!! And it should be indicated these same people loves drivers who cheat on line 4 on those EOBRs!

  • http://twitter.com/vinnie_z vince

    that is why my business of 19.5 years is downgraded to under 24,000 gvwr and don’t leave my home state, no more fmcsa,and in a non issue DOT state….all i have to do now is self inspect and a smoke test….the revenue is the same if not better(less fuel use) and no more cdl drivers..

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1269137418 Mike Jones

    Si….e-logs muy bueno…por latino……vote para Amnesty.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1269137418 Mike Jones

    Si Senyor……..Mega Fleet……

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1269137418 Mike Jones

    The mega fleets dont have much detention time…with 50.000 trailers…driver drops and hooks…if he does a Live Load…shipper doesnt take long….the LITTLE GUY..he can be kept there all day……Big Money..wink wink……

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  • Zac Franklin

    If drivers would stand up together we could throw there own laws back in their faces first they came out with no electronic devices in the drivers sight or reach 2nd they come out with the e log law now the e log is in the drivers reach and sight the companies are always texting u on those e logs and telling u stupid stuff and you are gonna reach over and read that while driving down the road . Now all these smaller mom and pop operations will be shut down due to the cost of placing these e logs in their trucks this law was only pushed by the big companies to root out all of the smaller companies and get every load

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