- Trump nominee Raymond Martinez has successfully passed the first test needed to head the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration by gaining approval from the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee, the Commercial Carrier Journal reported.
- Full Senate approval is required via majority vote before Martinez can assume the post.
- Martinez affirmed his intention to enforce the Electronic Logging Device (ELD) mandate set to begin on December 18, though he also plans to hold meetings with smaller fleets and independent drivers currently opposing the measure. In addition, he supports data-driven reforms to the Compliance, Safety, and Accountability carrier rating program.
With roughly five weeks remaining before ELD enforcement begins, concern over last-minute installations are proving well-founded, with reports revealing that less than 60% of small fleets have yet to take action on adoption. The Owner Operator Independent Driver Association is on record stating that without government oversight, the ELD mandate has created a "buyer beware" situation, as neither brand nor model types of ELDs have been recommended or forbidden.
Yet Martinez, during his initial confirmation hearing, made a point of stating his intention of meeting with unhappy owner-operators. Will Martinez seek to balance ELD rules to address the concerns of independent owner operators and small fleets?
Whether this results in more flexible policies regarding hours of service rules during parking struggles or even a list of recommended ELD models remains to be seen. The fact that Martinez is not only aware of independent owner-operator's concerns but plans to take action on the matter is encouraging for the industry.