regulations

Owner-operators deliver in MATS EOBR listening sessions

If you haven't read the report my colleague James Jaillet filed from the Mid-America Trucking Show on the Friday listening sessions the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration conducted on the subject of electronic on-board recorders for hours of service compliance, find it here. Time and again, operators urged regulators to address the real problems in the industry -- some of the same problems you'll remember the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association's Todd Spencer noting as underpinning ...

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What are owner-operators’ top five problems?

Readers, I'm beginning research on a story I'm preparing for Overdrive's June issue on which I need as much owner-operator input as is possible. It's one that will probe the five biggest problems owner-operators face in the industry today, offering practical and forward-looking ideas/examples toward solutions to those problems. My main problem, at this point, is how exactly to determine what the top five problems are? There are many pressures on owner-operator businesses today, from the ...

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Hours debacle covered at news site Politico

**(Overdrive editor Max Heine is posting updates from the Truckload Carriers Association annual meeting via the OD Twitter feed and Facebook page today. Expected to be included among the news are company driver and owner-operator of the year awards. Stay tuned.)** Click through the thumbnail of the graph here for Politico writer Adam Snider's brief dissection of the debate over the new hours rule, his reporting tracking primarily in the divisions over what exactly is wrong ...

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Back to basics in apnea debate: The importance of sleep

Last night on the Truth About Trucking Live online radio program of fuel hauler Allen Smith and his wife, Donna, discussion of the FMCSA's Motor Carrier Safety Advisory Committee and Medical Review Board's joint work on the issue of sleep apnea gave way at a crucial moment to a reiteration of the reality of the sleep apnea condition. It was delivered by a driver listener who, as I've heard from many other drivers out there ...

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More than a typo? Split sleeper wishful thinking

Trans Products / Trans Services Regulatory Manager Rich Wilson, during a break between sessions of the Motor Carrier Safety Advisory Committee meeting in Alexandria, Va., early this month, pointed out a couple curious problems with the medical forms some states are using. One, he pointed out, defined stage 3 hypertension as a blood pressure reading of, yes, greater than or equal to "10/90." A typo, definitely, that could easily be fixed. In the context of the hours ...

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Language of MCSAC / Medical Review Board recommended apnea guidelines — more from D.C.

Contrasting viewpoints coming together -- or not -- made for an interesting day today at the first of four days' worth of meetings of the FMCSA's Motor Carrier Safety Advisory Committee. Today's agenda was dedicated to drafting language toward formal recommendation to the agency of potential guidance to adopt in future rulemaking relating to sleep apnea and drivers' medical qualifications. For a roundup of what's in the recommendations as issued and some of the debate ...

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Rich Wilson’s ‘state of the industry'; and MCSAC apnea update

You're likely to remember Rich Wilson (pictured), former owner-operator and current regulatory manager with the Trans Products/Trans Services company, for his part in the Truck Driver Social Media Convention last fall, where he urged the drivers and owner-operators in attendance really be a part of the regulatory process -- on the front end, in the planning stages, before the regs were written and codified and, well, gained staying power. Wilson himself was at the Motor Carrier ...

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Stiff wind to pay the toll: The 2011 Channel 19 year in review

What better way to start the new year than with a look back on the previous? I did it last year, after all, so let's make it a tradition, how bout? The Chinese Year of the Rabbit saw all manner of issues hopping in and out of the national on-highway spotlight, bookended by a proposed hours-of-service rule and its ultimate issuance, slightly reducing potential weekly work hours. Bound up in the discussion was, as any regular ...

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FMCSA’s hours rule justification includes, well, guess who…

You can imagine my surprise yesterday when, just as I'm perusing portions of the new hours rule's full text in preparation for a story or two I'm putting together for Truckers News and Overdrive, I get an email from a colleague making note of the fact that none other than my own reporting is sourced in part of the rule's justification. Sure enough, right there on the 13th page of the 55-page document, in response to ...

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Former owner-operator going after MCSAC committee representation

As I've written about here in weeks prior, former owner-operator Fred Schaffner, a man with a passion for fighting for fairness in the treatment of drivers in the face of regulatory flux and with a keen eye on the regulatory process, came out of the Truck Driver Social Media Convention last October on a mission: to do his part to make drivers' voices a part of the influential, if relatively young (established in 2006), Motor ...

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