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Truckers News Staff | October 01, 2011

We have enough regulations to solve our problems

The EOBR, CSA, new medical regulations, Mexican trucks. How much more is it going to take? [Our] industry has the power to do something and we do nothing.

I could write a 10-page letter and list all of my personal aggravations, but let’s just get to the point. The simple thing to do is use the regulations already in place to get the changes we want so we can get to where we can at least make a living.

Think about this: What if for the month of August everyone started their 34-hour restart Monday morning at 9 a.m.? There are five Mondays in August so what if even 60 percent of trucks sat from 9 a.m. Monday to 9 p.m. Tuesday for their 34-hour restart? What are they going to do, give out tickets for following the rules?

The only way to make somebody understand there’s a problem is when it costs them money. If you would have warehouses that can’t supply their customers because they only had deliveries for three days instead of five, cafes that can’t serve meals because they didn’t get their daily deliveries, and gas stations that have no gas to sell for two days, then you’re probably going to get some attention.

Actions speak louder than words. So the ATA lobbying Congress or challenging a regulation in court is all a waste of time and money. If people started to run out of everyday items, maybe they would realize what trucks do for them.

I’m not against safety, but the problem with trucking regulations is that to government it’s not about safety, it’s just a revenue source. If it was really about safety, then DOT inspectors would be mechanics or, at the very least, former truck drivers. It never ceases to amaze me that somebody who probably couldn’t move my truck 100 feet without tearing something up can tell me everything that’s wrong with it.

This is something that companies should be able to get on board with to prove your drivers follow all the rules. If this was done right, we might even be able to get a national education program to explain the concept of [highway merging] to people.

Donna Gibbons

Kuna, Idaho


Drivers responsible for industry’s decline

This is in answer to the letter published in the July issue, titled “Industry leaning too far left,” claiming the Obama administration is antibusiness, anti-oil and anti-coal and why anyone in this industry would support Obama’s policies is hard for the writer to understand. The writer of this letter must have been on sabbatical from 2000 to 2008 or he was a supporter of the Republican policies because here is what the Bush administration did for small business truckers and consumers alike:

1. They gave us $4-a-gallon gas and diesel, gave big oil $9 billion in subsidies from our tax dollars, while they were making billions of dollars in profit quarterly.

2. Were against the mandatory fuel surcharge.

3. Backed and signed the bill to enable states to toll all existing interstates. Also, enabling states to sell, to the highest bidder, our existing toll roads, like in Indiana.

4. Went all the way to the Supreme Court to get Mexican trucks into the lower 48 states.

5. Lost 7 million jobs, most in the manufacturing industry.

I could go on and on but we, as business men and women, taxpayers, and consumers, were left with quite a mess. So, if Obama is anti-big business and the Republicans are anti-small business, not only is trucking in trouble, the whole country is.

I have been driving truck for 52 years and have seen, first-hand, the decline of this industry. You can blame the regulations, the freight rates or the cost of operating, but when all is said and done, the ones responsible for this decline are the drivers themselves. There is no longer the “camaraderie of the road” among us, and we need to support our own industry before we can expect someone else to do it for us. There are far more truck drivers in this country than politicians! Politics today need not cloud good judgment nor good business.

David P. Gaibis

Owner-operator

New Castle, Pa.

SOUND OFF

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What do you think of the court’s decision to vacate the EOBR rule?

VIA FACEBOOK

The matter of privacy is one that fits our constitution until our actions infringe on the rights of others. The court will continue to get information on serious accidents.

— Jacques C.

I would be happy if it was going away permanently. I will not have a computer tell me when it is safe to drive. These safety organizations should be careful for what they wish for. There will be more trucks with less experienced drivers and probably more accidents. Some of us with 2 million plus miles will leave the OTR sector because of the loss in revenue/home time.

— James M.

The safety “clubs” will find new vocabulary words to appease the congress … In time, the [manufacturers] of all vehicles will be required to install them. If they can mandate them for trucks, they sure can mandate them for automobiles.

— Charlie N.

Believe it or not, they already have similar devices on all vehicles for the past 10 years or more. It may not give specific locations but it can tell if you’ve been sitting, idling, rolling, how fast, etc. In the event of an accident, if need be they will and do pull info off of it.

— Sean B.

I think it’s great! We have enough mandates already; just let us do our jobs! Those, like me, that are responsible, should not have to suffer for others causing it to be harder on the rest!

— Robin D.

Great news. Big brother is already in our business too much already.

— Dianna J.

I’m for anything that makes us safer! Just boot up our pay!

— Debra P.

I’ve been using PeopleNet for six months out of 10 years driving. It has not made me a safer driver but does allow for more flexibility with logs vs. cheating. Safety is a personal way of life; those who pass off any part of it will suffer at some point down the road.

— Daniel C.

Wouldn’t need EOBRs if being a driver nowadays actually paid well to live well like we did back in the ‘80s. Back then, most of the drivers were skilled, knew how to wheel a truck and were respected and paid properly. Nowadays it’s mostly a puppy mill attitude, and the big companies do everything possible to screw the driver on his paycheck. No shame nowadays in trucking. It’s pathetic. If anyone needs to be monitored it’s brokers and large carriers’ checking accounts to ensure proper pay so no one has to run eight days a week, 25 hours a day to make a living.

— Brian C.



What about CSA concerns you the most?

“All of it. They’re putting everything on the driver now.”

— Rick Brayfield,

Etowah, Tenn., Carlyle





“I just try to drive right. The point system seems a little unfair because it’s not to the trucker’s advantage.”

— Lorenzo Baker,

Memphis, Tenn., DTI



“I don’t know what that is.”

— Larry Hauck,

San Bernardino, Calif., owner-operator



“I don’t like the point system; I just don’t agree with it. It’s like a credit score. What good does it do?”

— Eugene Priest,

Tarheel, N.C., leased to Landstar




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