- The Owner Operator Independent Drivers Association appealed the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration's (FMCSA) final rule on electronic logging devices (ELD) before a federal court on Monday, according to various news outlets.
- The rule requires all drivers to install the device by 2017, which according to drivers could lead to a 20% rate hike and would invade drivers' privacy rights. However, an Overdrive analyst expects the court to side with the feds as the battle continues.
- On a separate note, the American Trucking Association asked the FMCSA to extend the comment period for their proposed rule mandating speed limiters on heavy duty trucks, claiming the rule consisted of "a dramatic departure" from what the association had petitioned for in 2007, Overdrive reports.
Although the two trucking groups are often not in agreement, their opposition to the two rules represents a classic struggle between managing federal concerns over highway safety and drivers' concerns over privacy and delivering goods on time.
But why should supply chain managers care about the rules?
For one, the safety regulations could have a large impact on both roadway capacity, rates, and speed of delivery as they address drivers' ability to manage their workload.
The ELD rule was passed to force increased compliance with hours of service regulations, meaning drivers would have to take increased breaks and end-of-day stoppage or face compliance issues. Meanwhile, the speed limiter rule would make highway transit generally slower, which is far from popular for a variety of reasons. The results from an Overdrive poll shows 45% of respondents completely oppose speed limiters while another 47% were in favor of the rule but at speeds above those proposed by the FMCSA (up to 80mph).
As to the prospects of the two rules: much is still in flux with the speed limiter proposal, but the ELD rule appears likely to stay which may force fleet managers to bear additional costs and a temporary capacity crunch while the freight agencies bring their vehicles into compliance, which is unlikely to happen until all legal proceedings are finalized.