OOIDA questions agency’s e-log study, says it ignores small carriers

| May 20, 2014

rand mcnally eobr e-log eldThe Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association has taken aim at a recent study released by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration that claims there are “clear safety benefit(s)” to using electronic logging devices. 


FMCSA: Study shows lower crash rates with e-logs, but ‘skewed’ to bigger carriers

Electronic logs have a beneficial impact on truck safety, according to a study posted Monday by FMCSA. The agency does, however, say the study is ...

OOIDA says the study lacks relevant data to prove its point that ELDs lower crash rates and lower preventable crash rates. FMCSA said in its study ELDs could lower crash rates by 11.7 percent and lower preventable crash rates by 5.1 percent. The agency’s conclusion is based on the premise that logging devices would boost hours of service compliance, which would reduce fatigue and therefore fatigue-related crashes. 

The agency did note in its study that its data was “skewed” toward larger carriers, and OOIDA says that the study “in no way” represents small- or mid-sized carriers, citing FMCSA’s own figures that show 97 percent of all fleets have 20 trucks or fewer and 90 percent have six trucks or fewer. 

OOIDA also contends that, not only is the data incomplete, it may have errors. “The study’s conclusion is flawed because it included all other types of crashes except those that supposedly would be prevented with electronic logging devices,” says OOIDA Executive Vice President Todd Spencer.


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OOIDA also points out the report’s researchers admit that there wasn’t enough data to find any safety benefits when comparing DOT-recordable or fatigue-related crashes. Small sample sizes limited the researches’ ability to find a significant difference between trucks with logging devices and those without, FMCSA’s report notes. 

Fewer than 12,000 of the 83,000 crashes between 2008 and 2012 were recordable by the Department of Transportation, says FMCSA in its study, and 987 of those were fatigue-related. OOIDA’s response says the high number of crashes for the study’s sample “a scary concept,” and says that “if true, these carriers do not need ELDs, they need to be removed from the road all together.”

Still, all but one of the participating carriers had low Unsafe Driving BASIC scores, though two did show high a Crash Indictor, according the 2011 CSA data presented in the study.

“The possible changes that hold the most promise in improving highway safety are things like driver training, better working environments, support systems and safe parking,” says Spencer. “We’d like to see well-trained drivers put into trucks instead of unproven technology. It is the hallmark of a bureaucracy to embrace billion-dollar mandates in the name of safety while all but ignoring the absence of even basic driver training for new drivers entering the industry.”

OOIDA’s full review of the study is linked here.

  • TomT

    You mean to tell me the government who knows what is best for us and how we sleep and work, you mean the same government that put into law a health care law written on 2 +thousand pages that nobody read and two years into the program dose not know how many people actually signed up or even paid their premiums yet? you mean that government actually cited inaccurate figures to support their position? that can`t be right. I think OOIDA might be on to something here. Only thing is, if they are trying to tell the government agency responsible for safety, things that are common sense based on knowledge and experience from years of representing O/O`s then they are, in my view, wasting their time. The only thing our government listens to are lobbyists with deep pockets full of money like say, the ATA and big carriers and of course ELDs and technology companies who stand to benefit most from all this. Let`s see now, ELD`s, in-cab cameras, more EPA regulations, speed limiters, OK boys that about raps that up. Now let`s go work on those trucks that drive themselves and get back to me with more funding requests and campaign contributions.



  • Ryan S

    If a rule is required. Work it like shift work at a mill. Keep your sleep schedule nights then after a 48 hour off period change to a day sleep schedule. It would be a challenge for dispatch but actually a safe method for a human

  • Stefan F.

    I’d like to make a point that I’m not sure anyone has addressed in these issues. the HOS mandates are in direct conflict with the labor laws regarding proper break times and lunch breaks. in the first 8 hours a driver should have 2 15 minute breaks, one half hour lunch break, and one half hour rest period per the fmcsa mandate. after that the subsequent 6 hours of work there should be at least a half hour meal break. that’s 2 hours of break time. if they incorporated that and made the 14 hour rule a 16 hour rule , I don’t think anyone would have an issue with eld’s

  • Kevin

    I agree 8 hours off is good.they got people making laws that don’t have any ideal about are job.the fmcsa highers kids right out of collage because they can get them chep. On top of that you got company’s giving a cdl to people in 3 weeks and truck driving schools are a joke I know people that went and they still can’t drive



  • Dave Nichols

    THese morons dont even have a means of establishing fault in crashes, so what data lets them believe that the hours of service viloations are such a contributing factor that we need elogs?
    In case after case the fmcsa and dot refuse to investigate crashes and assign resonsibility yet they “know for a fact” that elogs will make a reduction in said crashes?
    These peope are following the administration in lying as a policy!!

  • lastgoodusername

    i beg to differ. it does not ignore small trucking companies and independents. it was aim squarely at us from the beginning.

  • Clyde

    Unless every commercial vehicle is mandated to have a E-Log, regardless of it’s size Van, Pickup, StepVan, straight Truck,Dump Truck or Tractor/ Trailer and regardless whether they Pickup and Delivery in A City, County, State or Anywhere in the U. S. Or Canada and Mexico, The Term Discrimination will appear in a Lawsuit sooner or later. Maybe FMCSA should forget E-LOG, or expect to spend $millions in Court Costs ?????

  • Judy Keith

    Drivers , please fill out the fmcsa survey! Then call your Congressman!

  • Bruce

    hello,my thought on E logs is a JOKE.any way for our crooked evil government to take from us.THIS MUST STOP

  • Tom T

    Truck drivers are exempt from Federal labor laws. In other words, no guaranteed overtime after 40 hrs. etc. Fast food workers are monitored for violations of labor laws, but truck drivers are regulated for safety, Period. No help there.

  • jason

    Tell you I heard something the other day that made alot of since to me. If the want to regulate our hours to prevent accidents then it should go on all motor vehicles. So from the time you head to work to the time you go home you only have 14 hours no matter who you are. It’s bull that truckers are regulated so much but when it comes to it a person working any other job can drive whenever they want to. I still say if oo have to put it in our trucks we should shut them down until something changes. If all trucks shut down for a couple of weeks the would get the point.

  • Tired of CA Shit

    This is also my point. A SHUT DOWN for 4 or 5 days and most of this stupid laws will be gone. We need people to look for us on this damn detentions, brokers keeping 60% etc, etc, but not just more and more rules. We are the only 70 hrs LEGAL workers, and you know why? If they put us on 40 hrs, the number of trucks will double.

  • Tired of CA Shit

    You shouldn’t be a driver. Why you don’t try to be ANOTHER of them, i mean politicians..LOl

  • Tired of CA Shit

    They know the number trucks would double and there would be no roads for all this trucks. We are the only 70 hrs LEGAL workers. Lets stop the trucks for a few days . Easy to fix.

  • Jon McLaughlin

    You are wrong there, I would still have an issue.

  • Paul Hendrick

    An older driver at the fuel island the other day explained to me that in 20 years of driving he has never driven this tired. That is the kind of voice that needs to be amplified, and heard, so that the right regulations are in place for all drivers, and for the safety of the public. I only have a few years of experience, and I always respect the driver that lends a rookie some insight. Something that is rare among drivers, and is really unfortunate. You can’t make a driver better by telling him how to do it, but you can at least give him some insight to the right way of doing it. Trucking is cut throat, the fact that we are divided makes us weak, and at the mercy of those that seek to regulate every facet of the over the road driver’s life. Its either “US” or “Them.” Where do you stand driver?

  • Jared

    I know WAY more people affected by drunk drivers but not everyone is required to have a blow and go in there car. I’m trying to feed my family and doing so safely with a clear csa score, IM NOT A FUCKING CRIMINAL, don’t treat me like one fuck you P.A.T.T. Parents against tired truckers, and the government

  • Joker Jim

    I wonder how long it will take to connect the big electronic companies and the mega carriers to the government regulators financially and show the consumer how they’re being robbed at the cash register. This idiotic debate about elogs and safety is getting a bit old. OOIDA should do some investigative journalism and connect the dots for the consumer. I’m guessing that they’re just about fed up with all the regulations and nanny state monitoring the government is doing.

  • DavidMac

    Maybe some can’t, but did YOU drive like an expert after 3 weeks? Everybody was a rookie at the beginning.

  • DavidMac

    And the point is that society needs truckers? Yes, but society needs garbage men, teachers, doctors, salesmen, construction workers, etc., too. So shut down for 3 – 4 weeks and disrupt the entire country and prove what? Something everyone with an ounce of critical thought already knows?

  • DavidMac

    The premise that ELDs prevent crashes is illogical. Observation of something changes behavior. It’s why judges/lawyers don’t want cameras in the courtroom. I say, mandate that every vehicle (including government vehicles) have driver cams and black boxes in them. Allow cops to pull 4-wheelers into weigh stations and get a Level 1 inspection. Make it a felony to tamper with the equipment or block the cam. An armed society is a polite society and an observed society obeys the laws. (Of course, none of that will happen. The public wants everyone else to be observed, just not themselves)

  • Tom T

    You have a good attitude towards your work and I commend your willingness to never stop learning. As an older driver that you referred to (45yrs) solidarity ended with de-regulation of the industry in 79-80. It turned company against company, driver against driver and started a race to the bottom in terms of rates and buyouts and bankruptcies and extreme competition. Before de-regulation, O/Os and Teamsters stood together, not necessarily both together but in each category. Union truck drivers were covered by what is known as a National Master Freight contract and when Jimmy Hoffa, (the first Hoffa) called a Nationwide strike, nothing moved across the country. When independents went on strike they blocked highways and gains were made in both categories. Part of the purpose of de-regulation was to divide and conquer labor by never again allowing them to shut down the whole country and this effected not only truck drivers but also airline pilots, stewardesses, telephone company employees, ever heard of ‘Ma Bell’? and a whole host of other labor workers and has brought unions and any chance for a solidified approach to winning gains such as they have in Germany and the workers did in Poland when they threw out the communists are forever gone. Big companies win and middle class labor and workers lose.

  • Tom T

    That happened in the seventies. I lived through union strikes, independent shut downs and blockades, and gains were made laws were changed congress and even some governors met with truck drivers,(Shapp in Penna) however all that changed forever with de-regulation and is gone for good. What we have now is re-regulation of everything but the rates which favor the large carriers that are owned by diversified funds and holding companies with no loyalty or cares for their employees or even the level of service, in most cases. It is all about the shares, prices and views of value in the eyes of buyout speculators and corporate share holders.

  • DavidMac

    Quite true. Business procedures tend to be cold-blooded but for a good reason: the imposed fiduciary duty that requires the officers of the company to run the business responsibly and create value for shareholders. The government, on the other hand, has no obligation to insure the trucking industry is run responsibly. Sure, the law says the government must regulate safe operation of commercial vehicles, but what if it doesn’t? No one will be fired from the government. The blame is cast down upon the industry, the private companies and the drivers.

  • Roberto Febles

    Congressman and facial is send sh………

  • Tom T

    I think you just got to the heart of the problem, something we all know and feel helpless to change. It is government interference and their unending effort to gain ever more control while destroying the middle class and small companies in the process. The constitution gave congress the authority to regulate interstate commerce and with the intent, at least in my view, of maintaining a free flowing transport of goods without embargoes or unfair laws by states to restrict or interfere with same in order to favor their own state. I don’t believe for a minute the writers of the constitution ever meant for them to abdicate their control to an agency that controls every aspect of the industry. In other words an ‘out of control government agency that declares, albeit in an insidiously disguised pretense
    of public safety, to pick corporate winners and losers
    based on size and greed. The overreach of a government that uses the mantra of “public safety” to systematically eradicate our rights and replace personal responsibility with laws is, again in my view, a destruction of the republic and the freedoms on which it was founded.

  • Mind Games

    The only thing that will prevent crashes is to pay the drivers what they are truly worth instead of paying drivers so low that they spend more time in the truck boxed up instead of truly living life to its fullest.

    I posted a similar comment over at the government’s comments site regarding e logs I’m sure my little wager will raise a few eyebrows.

  • Mind Games

    And so my question to all of you is this, Are you ready to become a man and stand up for what you believe in??? Are you ready to shut America down???

    What will you do if these paid off hacks shut you down???

    Social Security will put you at the back of the line till you are 65 or even 72 as these heartless SOB proposed back a few years ago.

    Aren’t you tired of the government that you by birthright sworn to protect turning on you like a pack of wild dogs???

    Sure I could go peacefully into the night but why should I? Why should any of us just be allowed to be swept away like dirt???

    Ask any veteran does this government care if you wind up homeless and see what their response will be.

    If they don’t care about our veterans what do you think they think of you???

    Does any of your radio talk show host have a job lined up for you as he or she is pumping bull***t in your ears over XM radio????

    OK final question, Are you awake yet Mr/Ms truck driver?!?!?

    I hope you guys copy and spread this message around the good ol United States while you still have a job…

  • guest

    This Elog is just ONE component of the overall design for the NEW TRUCKING..where everything is monitored by computers and quantified and analyzed….so the RICH can get RICHER….fat hogs can get MORE. Expect MORE stifling RULES and constraints….its part of a well planned AGENDA…..these people “in charge” are appointed, paid, and ORDERED to roll out this NEW TRUCKING quickly and efficiently….CAMERAS observing the driver are next….speed limiters also…..The new Federal Approved DOCTOR for physicals went into EFFECT today….much more is on the way…..they have plans and timelines to shove this up the truck drivers butt……only good robot/automatons will drive truck.

  • DavidMac

    On 12/off 12. Way too logical for the federal government to implement, though. The 70 hours/8 day rule means the dispatcher can legally work (driving + on duty/not driving) a driver 8.75 hours per day, 7 days/week. Even if the driver exceeds the 70 hours before the end of the 8 days, the driver is still expected to work (on duty/not driving). All without overtime pay. Yes, the system needs fixed but you’ll never get it fixed without rescinding the old system and devising a new one.

  • deaf ears

    You are full of shit. I have been on elogs around 9 yrs now. Stand up for what?? What in the fuck are some of you talking about???? Stand up for you???? Get fucking real. I am not going to fight for drivers so they can continue to back log and cheat and do whatever they want to do??? I am actually laughing at some of you because you have no power to change it. None. YOU WILL NEVER GET ENOUGH DRIVERS TOGETHER TO STAND!!!! EVER!!!! No matter what you do or say elogs are here.. You can jump into a time machine and go back to how it was before but either way its still going to happen. I dont give a shit who gets rich off elogs. Who cares. No one gives a shit. I know you are 3 million miles accident free never any accidents or violations on paper logs. Whatever. Who cares. I love how some of you dipshits no everything there is to know about the goverment and all the corruption but yet you are still just driving a semi like i am. Shocker. Just shut up learn to deal with it and do your job the best you can do without the fucking crying. I sware i am ashamed and embarrassed at alot of you winers. And i love how some of you “experianced” truck drivers think only the rookie companies are electronic now. Shows how little you know. I for one cannot wait until the mandate happens at all you scum of the trucking industry quit. Its about damn time they clean it up.

  • jerry banner

    8 hours is great resting time. The problem is the shippers and recievers not respecting the drivers time. Waiting to get loaded 4-6 hours in rediculous. This is where the problem starts. Hire more warehouse workers.

  • deaf ears

    You are so full of shit and have alot to learn. I have been on the road 21 yrs and on elogs. If you are tired on elogs YOU are doing something wrong.

  • deaf ears

    Teamsters can blow me. They are just pro winers. Fuck the union too. See where the union got hostess?? They were warned but they could not shut the fuck up

  • deaf ears

    Ewwww. I bet they are shaking in their boots. Stop you are scaring the jeepers creepers out of me!!!!

  • bill s

    Ok whatever. I have seen your comments on fb. Shut down shut down. Have you done it yet?

  • bill s

    Excuse me while you guys suck each other off but don’t think you have anyway to stop it. You can fool yourself and think you can but if you don’t think its a done deal your a complete fool. Should we worry about some of you after like if we walk into a crowded mall?

  • bill s

    Discrimination????? Wow are some of you drivers in some kind of dream world. Explain to me how technology is discrimination????? You drivers don’t have a clue.

  • Stewart Fisher

    He’s right … Every commercial vehicle from work van to tractor trailers must be equipped with elogs or it is Discrimination ! You can’t pick and choose who gets punished by these stupid laws that these incompetent people are making ! And to just make laws for one part of the group and exclude the other part … Discrimination at work !

  • bill s

    Fuuuuucccckkkk. You

  • confused

    Ok can someone please explain to me exactly what rights are being taken away??? I would prefer someone on elogs to explain this to me. I am just seeing alot of things that are not true and please tell me what rights that you think are being taken away?

  • Paul Hendrick

    You can’t seem to read, how unfortunate. What quality professionals we have in trucking. I never said that “I” drove tired. This is the kind of ‘good ole boy’ attitude that makes this profession so cut throat.

  • deaf ears

    I know newbie. I was saying the older driver or anyone on elogs is tired. Just a bunch of crybabies.

  • bill s

    You are full of shit. Just trying to be able to continue to falsify logs is the bottom line. Owner ops company its all. “Commercial vehicles” i think alot of you dipshits just need to learn how to run legal and shut up.

  • public

    FMSCA and P.A.T.T. its about time someone tries to make the roads safer for america. I have seen drivers for years ignore laws and do whatever they feel like doing and bragging about how they made their “funny book look”. Its plain and simple most that are arguing over the mandate are the ones that are the most dangerous and eventually will lead to killing someone. Back logging running 2-3 log books white out etc…. i will be happy when all this comes to an end. The public has had enough of these drivers thinking they are above everyone else.

  • Dave Bradley

    therein lays the whole problem in a nutshell!!

  • Dave Bradley

    you are only partially correct regarding pay. The biggest problem needing correction is enforcement on the largest section actually causing “crashes” and that is called “4wheelers” who happen to cause 80++ percent of accidents involving trucks and other vehicles. This has been a known statistic by insurance companies for DECADES.

  • Dave Bradley

    Having been a driver, O/O, and company owner, since 1959 I know what a joke the master freight contract, teamsters union and Jimmy “Mafia” Hoffa was. Freight continued to move, albeit slower, no matter who was on strike. I surely do not recall any road blockages either. Unless you can get every truck to shut down it will do no good and that has proven true on every shutdown since I have been a trucker. If everyone would stick together that would happen but there is always going to be “a hand(s)” out there saying they can’t shut down because they have a truck or mortgage payment, etc., etc..Learn to live with that but always fight against the government and their taxes and regulations. Remember the “Boston Tea Party” and what was accomplished after that!! Never surrender, period.

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