In an attempt to ensure truck drivers’ protections under federal anti-retaliation laws, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and the Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration have agreed to begin sharing information with one another when drivers claim their employers violate labor laws.
The Memorandum of Understanding between the two agencies follows the direction of an April-released report from the Department of Transportation that directed the two to collaborate on whistleblower claim investigations.
Whistleblower protections were also a topic at FMCSA’s Motor Carrier Safety Advisory Committee Meeting in February.
The agencies’ agreement works to bolster their response to claims of retaliation by carriers to drivers who have notified authorities of potential violations by their employer. Workers are entitled to anti-retaliation protection by the Surface Transportation Assistance Act.
Per the agreement between the FMCSA and OSHA, FMCSA will tell any driver who notifies it of potential retaliatory actions by a carrier that they should contact OSHA, and it will give drivers the right contact information.
That contact information is also available at whisteblowers.gov.
OSHA, likewise, will notify FMCSA of any complaints filed by commercial vehicle drivers and will provide complainants with FMCSA’s complaint hotline number and email address.
The two agencies will report annually on each year’s shared cases.
Overdrive interviewed Paul Taylor in May regarding the Surface Transportation Assistance Act and its protections for drivers and whistleblower claims. Click here to listen to the podcast from that interview.
Affected trucks include model year 2008-2018 Freightliner Cascadia and Western Star 4700, 4900, 5700 and 6900 trucks. DTNA says after hard brake applications, the brake light pressure switch may not activate the brake lights with the light application of the brake pedal.