Discussion:
Electronic On-Board Recording Devices
(too old to reply)
TurboTrucker
2004-11-23 01:01:51 UTC
Permalink
The FMCSA is taking comments until November 30,2004 by the public on the
proposed rules that would require on-board recording devices, or black
boxes, and it is essential that our side has a chance to respond. I'm not
sure that anything can be done to prevent them from being required, but if
anyone cares, it might not hurt to get your comments on the subject heard.

http://www.regulations.gov/AGCY_FEDERALMOTORCARRIERSAFETYADMINISTRATION.cfm

The above will take you to the comment page where you can offer your
comments. Instructions are there for acceptable methods for submitting your
comments.

I am posting my comments that have been mailed to them.

"Aside from the costs that would be associated with this proposal, there is
a fundamental issue at stake here. Truck drivers would be subjected to a
vast violation of privacy by anyone granted electronic access to the
proposed recording devices.

The proposal to use these devices as a means of enforcing HOS rules is also
new ground, for I cannot think of any industry or group that would be held
to this strict a standard, as a means to monitor their day to day
activities for enforcement purposes.

I think that most people understand that standards must be set, and that
they need to be enforced, but there must be lines that are not crossed, to
insure that people do not feel that their lives are constantly under the
microscope of governmental control.

In this case, the end is not justified by the proposed means. The trucking
industry has steadily improved their safety numbers over the past decade,
and this continues to be the case. Enforcement of the HOS regulations at
roadside inspections, audits of carriers, and fines associated with
violations are effective tools of enforcement, and reason to have made me
stay compliant for many years now.

The proposal of my being subjected to a random check at any time of an
electronic device that would be required to be installed on my vehicle, by
enforcement authorities is something I am not prepared to condone or
tolerate. This is not because I expect to be found guilty of wrongdoing. It
is because it violates fundamental freedom(s) that this country was founded
on. I find it an unreasonable violation of an expected right to be able to
do my job without being subjected to an uncomfortable level of scrutiny and
mistrust.

Some will state that as drivers of commercial vehicles, we are expected to
be held to a higher standard, and I agree with that premise and in fact
have stated it myself. I operate my truck with that in mind each and every
day. We all have a responsibility to share the roads, and do our jobs in a
responsible manner, and with regard to the general public at all times.

To those that endorse or who are calling for these devices, I must ask that
each of you consider something very carefully. If this is allowed for one
group or industry, where does it lead? As with all other methods of
stemming misbehavior in our society, it routinely has spread into other
areas as a general rule.

If a truck driver is allowed to be randomly stopped and have all of the
vehicle's previous activities scrutinized over a period of time, and then
is cited for violations based on that criteria, the next logical step will
be to apply this to other groups of people with the same goal in mind.

To illustrate what I am eluding to, imagine being stopped by an officer and
having an electronic device hooked up to your automobile, and then written
citations for every instance that your vehicle was noted for being operated
over the maximum speed limit for the state you reside in, or for that
matter, just a few moments before you were stopped.

I have been a driver for 22 years, and have attained a safety record that I
am proud of. I do not operate in an unsafe manner, nor do I align myself
with people that do.

The ticket to keeping enforcement fair and equal is to use tools that are
designed to reduce misconduct, but at the same time, assure fairness and a
sense of trust extended to those that are playing by the rules. As a person
who does his level best to abide by the rules, I am not willing to continue
working in this industry if subjected to this device requirement.

Stepping up enforcement at the state level, at inspection stations will
weed out those drivers that willingly violate the rules. Stepped up
enforcement and audits of carriers and imposing strict and hefty fines in
either case, that are not negotiable when they are found guilty, will
either force these drivers and/or carriers into compliance, or put them out
of business, as they should be.

I beg of the FMCSA to take time to consider this issue carefully, and to
not be influenced by outside groups or by those that have ulterior and
misplaced goals in mind.

Inside most of those trucks that are on the roads each day, is an average
person just trying to make a living."

~Tony~
tscottme
2004-11-23 12:03:22 UTC
Permalink
Post by TurboTrucker
The FMCSA is taking comments until November 30,2004 by the public on the
proposed rules that would require on-board recording devices, or black
boxes, and it is essential that our side has a chance to respond. I'm not
sure that anything can be done to prevent them from being required, but if
anyone cares, it might not hurt to get your comments on the subject heard.
http://www.regulations.gov/AGCY_FEDERALMOTORCARRIERSAFETYADMINISTRATION.cfm
Post by TurboTrucker
The above will take you to the comment page where you can offer your
comments. Instructions are there for acceptable methods for submitting your
comments.
I am posting my comments that have been mailed to them.
"Aside from the costs that would be associated with this proposal, there is
a fundamental issue at stake here. Truck drivers would be subjected to a
vast violation of privacy by anyone granted electronic access to the
proposed recording devices.
<snip>

I think recorders are a good idea. The relevant comparison isn't between a
truck driver or truck and a passenger car, but commercial aircraft and
commercial road vehicles. Commercial aircraft, above a minimum size, have
been subject to these types of recorders for years. Locomotives are also
subject to event recorders.

I think that since most of us, and most "civilians" have been driving since
they were reckless teenagers, we all take it as our right to drive with as
little oversight as possible. Operators of commercial vehicles seem to have
no legitimate claim to avoid surveillance. Not many of us would think it a
good idea to remove data recorders from commercial aircraft just to enhance
the privacy of airlines or pilots.
--
Scott

"America's power is only an echo of Europe's impotence." - Le Monde
gpsman
2004-11-23 12:58:04 UTC
Permalink
Post by TurboTrucker
The FMCSA is taking comments until November 30,2004 by the public on
the proposed rules that would require on-board recording devices, or
black boxes, and it is essential that our side has a chance to
respond. I'm not sure that anything can be done to prevent them from
being required, but if anyone cares, it might not hurt to get your
comments on the subject heard.
http://www.regulations.gov/AGCY_FEDERALMOTORCARRIERSAFETYADMINISTR-
ATION.cfm
Post by TurboTrucker
The above will take you to the comment page where you can offer your
comments. Instructions are there for acceptable methods for
submitting
your
Post by TurboTrucker
comments.
I am posting my comments that have been mailed to them.
"Aside from the costs that would be associated with this
proposal, there
is
Post by TurboTrucker
a fundamental issue at stake here. Truck drivers would be subjected
to a vast violation of privacy by anyone granted electronic access to
the proposed recording devices.
<snip>
I think recorders are a good idea. The relevant comparison isn't
between a truck driver or truck and a passenger car, but commercial
aircraft and commercial road vehicles. Commercial aircraft, above a
minimum size, have been subject to these types of recorders for years.
Locomotives are also subject to event recorders.
I think that since most of us, and most "civilians" have been driving
since they were reckless teenagers, we all take it as our right to
drive with as little oversight as possible. Operators of commercial
vehicles seem to have no legitimate claim to avoid surveillance. Not
many of us would think it a good idea to remove data recorders from
commercial aircraft just to enhance the privacy of airlines or pilots.
--
Scott
*********
On-board recorders would be the best thing to happen for drivers since
air-ride seats. That's why it won't happen in our lifetimes.
-----

- gpsman


--
Posted at http://www.layover.com/
Trucking jobs, news, features, chat rooms, and more!
TurboTrucker
2004-11-23 17:50:32 UTC
Permalink
Post by tscottme
I think recorders are a good idea. The relevant comparison isn't
between a truck driver or truck and a passenger car, but commercial
aircraft and commercial road vehicles. Commercial aircraft, above a
minimum size, have been subject to these types of recorders for years.
Locomotives are also subject to event recorders.
Event recorders are fine and if they were going to be used in a similar
manner as they have been applied to other modes of transportation, then I
would not have objection to them, and correct me if I am wrong... but
aren't these devices used or scrutinized post incident ONLY in rail and
air?

An airplane does not land at an airport and have an FAA agent rush out on
the tarmac to plug into it to determine if the pilot made any in-flight
errors, or similarly when a train pulls into a terminal yard. They are used
to determine fault or blame when something goes wrong and AFTER something
happens that precipitates such scrutiny.

I use the comparison to other road vehicles, because that is the medium
that we share our vehicles with. Look at our history. Drug testing began
with the trucking industry, and now it has spread throughout our society
and even to the point that our children are tested in order to be allowed
to participate in school functions. Now, I don't have any objection to my
being drug tested at any point and time, because I am clean, but if this is
allowed to be used for RANDOM and ENFORCEMENT purposes, it sets up every
American to be scrutinized randomly for all kinds of misbehavior, by anyone
with a badge, in order to keep them in line.
Post by tscottme
I think that since most of us, and most "civilians" have been driving
since they were reckless teenagers, we all take it as our right to
drive with as little oversight as possible. Operators of commercial
vehicles seem to have no legitimate claim to avoid surveillance. Not
many of us would think it a good idea to remove data recorders from
commercial aircraft just to enhance the privacy of airlines or pilots.
The differences in WHEN these boxes are used to determine any wrongdoing is
at the core of my personal objection. They will be subject to scrutiny at
ANY time, rather than to determine misbehavior post incident.

If the Government is allowed to get their foot in the enforcement door
here, where will it stop?

Okay...try and see the larger picture here.

I'm not sure which terminal you work out of, but let's use Cookeville as an
example.

Two round trips from Cookeville to Smyrna each day is around 600 miles.
That can easily be done as the rules are today. You, working in a linehaul
position will complete those two round trips easily each day.

One night, across I-40 on your second trip back, an hour from Cookeville,
encounter a horrible wreck just in front of you, where you are detained
sitting still for 4 hours, until you are allowed to squeak by the carnage.

At the point you begin driving again, you are past the two hour extension
that is afforded drivers when conditions prevent a driver from completing
his normal run, and still an hour away from home.

Now...I don't know too many drivers that would not finish the run and do
what must be done to finish their day, especially knowing that there is
almost no chance that they will be detained by an officer across that
stretch of highway at night for a DOT inspection.

The black box, as proposed is going to take that completely out of the mix.
Every time you start your day, you will log-on and your entire time will be
recorded. For the next eight days (who knows? it may be 30 days if they
get it passed), that potential problem will be there to be cited for, if
you take it on in late.

If you don't, and are driving a day cab....it's motel room hunting time, or
you will have to await a relief driver to come to you and finish the run
and get you home....far later in the day, and then...you face the problem
of being in violation AGAIN a mere few hours later, if you remain
absolutely true to the regulations, because you will not have been off-duty
the required hours because of the immense delays. Your next night is now
screwed up.

That's just one example, and how it can affect one segment of the industry
and one driver. Take this across the board and multiply it 3 million times,
2-3 times a week when drivers encounter delays....

Yep...we'll be legal alright...and the country will be safer...right?

Are you sure you are 100% behind this proposal?

~Tony~
tscottme
2004-11-23 21:02:44 UTC
Permalink
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by tscottme
I think recorders are a good idea. The relevant comparison isn't
between a truck driver or truck and a passenger car, but commercial
aircraft and commercial road vehicles. Commercial aircraft, above a
minimum size, have been subject to these types of recorders for years.
Locomotives are also subject to event recorders.
Event recorders are fine and if they were going to be used in a similar
manner as they have been applied to other modes of transportation, then I
would not have objection to them, and correct me if I am wrong... but
aren't these devices used or scrutinized post incident ONLY in rail and
air?
An airplane does not land at an airport and have an FAA agent rush out on
the tarmac to plug into it to determine if the pilot made any in-flight
errors, or similarly when a train pulls into a terminal yard. They are used
to determine fault or blame when something goes wrong and AFTER something
happens that precipitates such scrutiny.
Drug-testing didn't start with trucking, it started well before that. In
fact there were high school athletes taking school district drug screens
years before workers under DOT regs were tapped for that privilege.

Without EOBRs too many people in and out of the industry are able to pretend
the HOS are being complied with. Customers are able to ignore the HOS
impact of their long delays, trucking companies and dispatchers are able to
say "we follow the HOS sctrictly", wink, wink, and then punish you for doing
exactly that.

The way trucks and their drivers operate on public roads is a matter of
public safety and public concern. The public has a right to expect the laws
affecting our industry will be enforced.

Cockpit Voice Recorders (CVR) and Flight Data Recorders (FDR) are routinely
used for non-accident related activities. For example, it's quite normal
for the FDR to be reviewed after some aircraft upset, hard landing, bad
turbulence, engine anomoly, etc. The limitation on the uses of FDR and CVR
are usually the matter of union contract and not FAA regulation. One
example in the news recently is another turbulence encounter involving an
Airbus A300. Shortly after Sept 11, 2001 an Airbus A300 crashed outside of
NYC. It appears that during a wake turbulence encounter shortly after
takeoff one crewmember applied the rudder too abruptly and the vertical part
of the tail broke off leading to a crash. This year another A300 was
invloved in something similar and the FDR was reviewed to discover that the
aircraft was not in-fact subject to excessive side-loads. When engines have
problems, or the aircraft lands too hard, the FDR is routinely examined.
CVRs are used less frequently simply because they are usually over-written
before they can be examined. CVRs are only required to record the last 30
minutes of audio. NASA and the aircraft industry make routine use of FDR
data.

Pilot's are subject to random or specific FAA exam, including the example
you cited of an FAA agent rushing out to examine either the pilot's records
or his activity. It's called a "ramp check". Rather than an FAA Inspector
plugging in is data logger, he will simply ask the airline to turn over FDR
data to their local designated FAA officer.

We could use EOBR surveillance to cut back on the many hours of wasted time
and some of the other unscrupulous practices drivers are presented with so
that the "suits" can pretend everyone is following the HOS.

It's these types of issues we could use to improve our working conditions,
but we have to get involved and get them implemented in such a way to help
us, not just give more false impressions.

The Airline Pilot's Association is in the forefront of research and lobbying
to make working conditions better in their industry. ALPA represents the
unionized pilots, not the airlines or the aircraft manufacturers. Everytime
ALPA speaks they have clean professionals represent their members in a sane
and cautious manner. They present specific improvements and explain the
benefits. In trucking we just seek to be able to wear ripped sweatpants and
pour piss in the parking lot while blaring our hillbilly slang across a 1000
watt kicker with roger-beep, echo, and reverb. I say we're lucky we aren't
forced to drive under police escort. If our problems were mostly the fault
of cars and bad bosses, wouldn't the truck stop be the nicest part of our
day. They are boss-free, cars are segregated from trucks, and the rest of
the traffic are fellow CDL drivers. Instead, the truck stop is a bubbling
sewer with every driver attempting to park 19 deep on the end of the last
fuel pump.
--
Scott

"America's power is only an echo of Europe's impotence." - Le Monde
TurboTrucker
2004-11-23 23:17:37 UTC
Permalink
Post by tscottme
Drug-testing didn't start with trucking, it started well before that.
Actually, I checked up on that. We all fell under the law that President
Reagan signed in 1986, which mandated testing programs be implimented for
Federal workers, transportation workers, and other industries with Federal
oversight.
Post by tscottme
In fact there were high school athletes taking school district drug
screens years before workers under DOT regs were tapped for that
privilege.
However, it is STILL not a FEDERAL requirement that they do so. Any
business or local Government (including school systems) may institute a
drug free "zone".
Post by tscottme
Without EOBRs too many people in and out of the industry are able to
pretend the HOS are being complied with. Customers are able to ignore
the HOS impact of their long delays, trucking companies and
dispatchers are able to say "we follow the HOS sctrictly", wink, wink,
and then punish you for doing exactly that.
The way trucks and their drivers operate on public roads is a matter
of public safety and public concern. The public has a right to expect
the laws affecting our industry will be enforced.
Think about what you are saying, Scott. We live in a society where people
violate all kinds of laws, regulations, and rules on a daily basis, but do
we want to live our entire lives under scrutiny in a transparent existence,
where EVERY single move we make is watched by someone?

What's next? Video cameras to monitor every inch of our streets, yards, and
even our homes, to make sure that we are not committing infractions? Will
tapping devices be placed on all our phones to find evidence of misconduct?

Okay...you and I know that there are people out there that run constantly
in violation, and there are carriers that use varying amounts of pressure
to nudge drivers to run non-compliant, and they absolutely need to be
brought under control, but this is not the way to do it.
Post by tscottme
Cockpit Voice Recorders (CVR) and Flight Data Recorders (FDR) are
routinely used for non-accident related activities. For example, it's
quite normal for the FDR to be reviewed after some aircraft upset,
hard landing, bad turbulence, engine anomoly, etc. The limitation on
the uses of FDR and CVR are usually the matter of union contract and
not FAA regulation.
Pilots are not cited, suspended, or fined based upon anything that the CVR
or the FDR reveals in those situations, and the FAA would only be involved
if there was some reason to review it. They do not randomly pull CVR's or
FDR's and try to find problems.

Don't you see the difference? Don't you see the danger to all of us? I'm
not speaking of just trucking...where does it stop? Our entire system of
law decides cases based upon past court rulings, and comparisons are made
all the time to what is allowed within our nation, to determine legality of
practically everything.
Post by tscottme
Pilot's are subject to random or specific FAA exam, including the
example you cited of an FAA agent rushing out to examine either the
pilot's records or his activity. It's called a "ramp check". Rather
than an FAA Inspector plugging in is data logger, he will simply ask
the airline to turn over FDR data to their local designated FAA
officer.
A quote from AV Web:
http://www.avweb.com/news/avlaw/181897-1.html

"Upon request, a properly credentialed FAA official may demand to see a
pilot's license and medical certificate and a copy of the pilot's logbook
(if he has it with him). An inspector cannot normally gain entry to search
an aircraft operated under FAR Part 91 without authorization from the owner
or operator, but he may examine the aircraft from the outside and look
through unshaded windows. Exceptions may exist where there is probable
cause that a crime has been committed or in "border crossing" situations".

That is pretty much in line as it is today with us.
Post by tscottme
We could use EOBR surveillance to cut back on the many hours of wasted
time and some of the other unscrupulous practices drivers are
presented with so that the "suits" can pretend everyone is following
the HOS.
Do you really think that this will happen? If the government had any stake
or concern with wasted time, pay issues, or realistic compliance, then they
would have addressed this long ago. They will not. To do so, will upset too
many apple carts.

Think about it. If they were to simply institute a pay system requirement
that would overturn the present-day production oriented system of pay for
drivers, then what driver would have reason to violate HOS?
Post by tscottme
It's these types of issues we could use to improve our working
conditions, but we have to get involved and get them implemented in
such a way to help us, not just give more false impressions.
I'll tell you how this is going to play out. IF they actually get the boxes
in the trucks, and nothing is done in terms of pay for drivers, you're
going to see a mass defection of drivers into other careers. The driver
shortage that they think they have now will be nothing. They might as well
skip that process, and figure out how to make the damn trucks drive
themselves.

I'm quite prepared to do just exactly that, because enough is enough. I'm
extremely safety conscience, and I do consider myself to be one of the good
guy's out there each and every day, but this is not something I can live
with. My objection is not with to the law enforcement community. My
objection is with the government, who somehow wants to find the most
intrusive way possible to enforce regulations, in order to appease safety
advocates.

I have seen my liberties slowly eroded over the past two decades to the
point that the apprehension of dealing with enforcement bodies is not worth
the job.

Notice...I use the word LIBERTIES....not rights. I fully understand that
the rights that I have in my home, do not extend to my vehicle on the road.

I expect to be held to a higher standard. I expect to be scrutinized more
closely. I don't think that the involvement that the trucking industry has
in the highway accident and crash statistics has come anywhere near to the
point that we need to be the MOST closely scrutinized people of any
industry, or to be required to open my left door whenever an officer comes
up to me with a computer cord.
Post by tscottme
In trucking we just
seek to be able to wear ripped sweatpants and pour piss in the parking
lot while blaring our hillbilly slang across a 1000 watt kicker with
roger-beep, echo, and reverb.
I say we're lucky we aren't forced to
drive under police escort. If our problems were mostly the fault of
cars and bad bosses, wouldn't the truck stop be the nicest part of our
day. They are boss-free, cars are segregated from trucks, and the
rest of the traffic are fellow CDL drivers. Instead, the truck stop
is a bubbling sewer with every driver attempting to park 19 deep on
the end of the last fuel pump.
I would never defend this type of driver. I certinly never hired one either
that remotely would fit the description.

But let's bring this into focus. You state this as if this is what the
MAJORITY of drivers are like, and it's not. What you speak of, and what we
know to be true, is that there has been a minor insurgency of this type of
driver into the industry, that do tend to leave and impression upon all of
us.

~Tony~
tscottme
2004-11-24 13:13:32 UTC
Permalink
Drug testing was already in use in various industries well before the DOT
regs which apply to pilots, A&Ps, and truck drivers. I'm not sure what
material difference it makes if you are peeing in a cup to make the Sec of
Trans happy or the Board of Directors. Like I said, drug testing didn't
start with truck drivers. In fact, in many ways we are treated with far
more freedom than others in other industries. An airline has an FAA
Principle Inspector, I think that's the term, all but working inside the
airline offices. Nearly everything other than the color of the carpet in
the employee break room is covered by an approved operating manual. It's
just like trucking, the real workings of that industry are virtually
impossible to see except after you work in it. We can kid ourselves and
pretend that if we were paid like retiring airline pilots then we wouldn't
mind their onerous regulations and being held to very high standards. Very,
very few of the people in that industry ever see big money that outsiders
think they all make. The big differences between their industry and our
industry is the type of people it attracts, the level of education of those
people, the culture of the industry, and the consequences of screwing up.
Our industry is full of people that want to be paid more like airline pilots
but act like characters in a bad Hollywood trucking movie.

Our industry is much like the commercial aviation industry and they are
subject to far more oversight than we. You keep making comments that
indicate you are comparing the rights of a *professional* and *federally
regulated* truck driver operating in common carriage with the rights and
oversight of private individuals operating private vehicles. This industry
lives on the ability to routinely operate beyond the HOS. How long would it
take for any driver to find another driver or trucking company that
routinely operates in violation of the HOS, more than 30 seconds? I think
the fact that every drop-out, PhD, teenager, and professional sees driving a
s inherent in being alive few people properly respect the skills, even many
CDL drivers.

You can imagine, rightly or wrongly, that every surveillance technique
possible will be permanently directed to every citizen at every moment, I
prefer to live in reality. If the industry has a long-term, well-deserved
reputation of operating in frequent violation of the HOS, if the proposed
measures are inline with measures already imposed on other similar
industries to great benefit, I see nothing to get upset about. I certainly
don't see any reason to become hysterical that if A is implemented than B-Z
are inevitable for all 300 million people. Panic early and avoid the rush,
I suppose.

The FAA doesn't randomly review FDR or CVR data, the airlines review the
data and use it for much the same purposes as FAA would use it. The
limitations on use of FDR/CVR data is almost always due to union/company
management, not regulation. If the FAA wanted the data, they would get it.
Typically the company will use the data for "trend monitoring" of equipment
or incident investigation. If there's question of a pilot/crew not taking
proper action the FDR very well could be reviewed, within the limitations of
the union/company agreement. Pilot's are disciplined for actions nowhere
near violations of regulations, but violation of much stricter company
procedures. Here's one big difference between airlines and trucking, they
operate far above the demands of the regulations. For example, an
entry-level airline pilot is required by law to have about 250 hours of
flight experience, the airlines will hardly ever even review the application
of a pilot with less than 1,500 hours of flight experience, unless they need
female applicants. This industry will take a professional dishwasher, spin
him around a parking lot for 3 weeeks and give him the keys, fuel card, and
a dispatch. The FAA's random checks are done in a manner different than
random checks you fear using EOBRs in trucks. The difference is there is
hardly any evidence of widespread violations in the airlines, there are
plenty of violations in trucking.

You quote from AvWeb about FAA demands for credentials and records of pilots
that fall under Part 91, that is the private pilot section of the aviation
regs. Part 121 are the comparable regulations to our FMSCR sections.
Airline crewmembers most certainly have been "ramped" by FAA Inspectors.
But once again there are seldom violations to be found during any random
checks. Most of these "ramp checks" are done for cause after someone else
in the company or alsewhere spots a violation.

I don't expect EOBR rules to include anything about our pay. As virtually
nobody in the industry seems to realize our pay is not decided by Federal
regulation. As such, the pay won't be increased by demanding it be set by
Congress. What I hope will happen is that the regulations and enforcement
will be such that virtually everyone in the industry recognizes that what
they do will be noticed. If it takes EOBRs for the customers and the
"suits" in dispatch to stop pretending that making all appointments for 6am
is possible, that's fine with me. If it takes EOBRs for customers and
drivers to stop pretending that 600 miles can be covered in 8 hours, if
nobody is looking, that's fine by me.

Having a huge number of drivers leave the industry isn't a catasrophe, it's
probably the best way to improve pay and conditions. If the regulations can
be tweaked so that the outlaws leave, then that's an unqualified success.

I don't try place a number or percentage on the number of bad actors with a
CDL, the reason I don't is because each bad actor can have such a horrible
impact. How many times does a car have to get pushed down the road by a big
truck, before they support more strict regulations? How many urine bombs do
you have to knock over on your shoes before you question the quality of
drivers? How many truckstops have to be bottlenecked by the last fuel pump
can't-parkers before it's indicative of the industry? How many years does a
CDL driver have to drive before he's even heard of the "kingpin law" or
whatever term it's called in his neck of the woods?

If some driver of real quality can honestly claim that it's hard for them to
see CDL drivers doing these things, or worse, I'm all ears. Not a day,
sometimes not an hour, goes by that I don't see such antics.
--
Scott

"Arafat remains in stable condition after dying in a Paris hospital."
TurboTrucker
2004-11-24 18:27:26 UTC
Permalink
Post by tscottme
Drug testing was already in use in various industries well before the
DOT regs which apply to pilots, A&Ps, and truck drivers. I'm not sure
what material difference it makes if you are peeing in a cup to make
the Sec of Trans happy or the Board of Directors. Like I said, drug
testing didn't start with truck drivers.
It's a minor point, and certainly not worth arguing about. You take it.
Post by tscottme
In fact, in many ways we are treated with far more freedom than others
in other industries. An
airline has an FAA Principle Inspector, I think that's the term, all
but working inside the airline offices. Nearly everything other than
the color of the carpet in the employee break room is covered by an
approved operating manual. It's just like trucking, the real workings
of that industry are virtually impossible to see except after you work
in it. We can kid ourselves and pretend that if we were paid like
retiring airline pilots then we wouldn't mind their onerous
regulations and being held to very high standards.
It's YOUR comparison. I don't happen to see it the same way. Airline pilots
DO receive a much higher salary, and they train for years to attain it. I
don't make such a comparison because of the differences that exist that do
separate the two career choices.
Post by tscottme
Very, very few of
the people in that industry ever see big money that outsiders think
they all make.
I have a brother-in-law who is a private pilot for McKee Foods, and
personally know three commercial airline pilots, and their incomes far
exceed my own. What is big money these days anyway?
Post by tscottme
The big differences between their industry and our
industry is the type of people it attracts, the level of education of
those people, the culture of the industry, and the consequences of
screwing up. Our industry is full of people that want to be paid more
like airline pilots but act like characters in a bad Hollywood
trucking movie.
You sure have a dim view of people, don't you? I don't happen to fault all
people who have lower levels of education, or paint them with a wide brush.
Post by tscottme
Our industry is much like the commercial aviation industry and they
are subject to far more oversight than we.
I totally disagree. The vast majority of pilots transport hundreds of
thousands of people on a daily basis, and when they crash, it's almost
certain death for all that are in the vicinity. The operate routinely above
the earth. Of COURSE they are to be subjected to far more oversight.
Post by tscottme
You keep making comments
that indicate you are comparing the rights of a *professional* and
*federally regulated* truck driver operating in common carriage with
the rights and oversight of private individuals operating private
vehicles.
It's an absolute valid comparison. Why? Because we share the same space
with those individuals in those private vehicles. Regulating us is fine and
dandy. I agree with it. However, we all know that those unregulated drivers
in private motor vehicles can commit actions that create the same carnage,
and this would remain the case even if every truck driver was 100%
compliant at all times. These private individuals are currently held
responsible for crashes 74% of the time when a commercial vehicle is
involved.
Post by tscottme
This industry lives on the ability to routinely operate
beyond the HOS. How long would it take for any driver to find another
driver or trucking company that routinely operates in violation of the
HOS, more than 30 seconds? I think the fact that every drop-out, PhD,
teenager, and professional sees driving a s inherent in being alive
few people properly respect the skills, even many CDL drivers.
You can slice it, dice it, mince it, or even puree it, and it all comes
down to one thing. Production based compensation is at the very core of the
problem.

Going back to your comparison to airline pilots for a minute...

A pilot is going to log only so many flight hours per month. In all but a
few cases, a pilot receives a salary. The brother-in-law I mentioned has a
far sweeter deal. He is paid a salary base for his flying time, put up in
hotels while away from home, paid around the clock for the time away from
home, and his meals are comped as well.

As an Independent Contractor, I don't have it bad either. I am aligned with
a carrier that adheres to strict detention guidelines, and they pony up the
dough without question when it occurs. I don't have to even request it.
This along with the other compensation that I receive doesn't lend me to
"make up" lost time, even though I would make more if the wheels were
turning.

I do have the ever present knowledge that the only thing I have to do in
order to make more money, is to run more miles. I could do this, if my goal
was to simply make more money. As it is, I DO take my responsibility
seriously to keep it safe, and to not take chances that would cause me to
lose what I have worked for over the past two decades. Because that is also
a reality in our present-day litigious society.

Not everyone thinks like this though. Those that do not, more than likely
have nothing to lose. Money might well be their goal. Running more
translates into making more.

So what could be done to alleviate all of this, with one swift signature?

Change the pay structure into one that takes away all incentive to violate
HOS rules. Can't anyone see how simple and effective that would be? A pilot
is not likely at all, in my estimation, to agree to violate his HOS, simply
because his pay will not be altered by doing so, unless there was some
under the table deal, which may or may not ever happen (I suppose it
could).

One theme to all of this that I do think we can agree upon, is that most of
the problem arises from the carriers. They hold practically all of the
cards in this stupid game. Much like a reverse sting operation for
prostitution, where johns are arrested for soliciting a cop posing as a
prostitute, targeting the drivers with enforcement is along the same lines
as an ineffective method of enforcement in most cases. Next week, when
temptation is back on the street, it's business time again for those that
can't resist.

We have a set of rules, where the driver is supposed to have complete
control to refuse to run illegal, and yet, how many drivers placed in
uncomfortable situations feel that they can enforce their objections?

It's not as easy to change jobs as it once was, and the bills roll on in
each month. The carriers that have a revolving door policy in regard to the
people they hire, know full and well that the driver is often left holding
the bag nearly 100% of the time. Their chances of an audit are on par with
any taxpayer being audited for their returns.
Post by tscottme
You can imagine, rightly or wrongly, that every surveillance technique
possible will be permanently directed to every citizen at every
moment, I prefer to live in reality. If the industry has a long-term,
well-deserved reputation of operating in frequent violation of the
HOS, if the proposed measures are inline with measures already imposed
on other similar industries to great benefit, I see nothing to get
upset about. I certainly don't see any reason to become hysterical
that if A is implemented than B-Z are inevitable for all 300 million
people. Panic early and avoid the rush, I suppose.
I really worry about people that hold that line of thinking. The problem
with it, is that sooner or later some of this garbage that the government
cooks up will eventually come to land at YOUR doorstep.
Post by tscottme
Here's one big difference between airlines and trucking,
they operate far above the demands of the regulations. For example,
an entry-level airline pilot is required by law to have about 250
hours of flight experience, the airlines will hardly ever even review
the application of a pilot with less than 1,500 hours of flight
experience, unless they need female applicants. This industry will
take a professional dishwasher, spin him around a parking lot for 3
weeeks and give him the keys, fuel card, and a dispatch.
Scott...driving a truck does not require a great level of skill. There are
certainly differences that are noteworthy in comparison to the automobile,
but I don't see any evidence that newbies are involved in more serious
crashes than those with years of experience. They do screw up in parking
lots, docks, and do have more MINOR incidents. Look at most of the higher
profile accidents that we read about. These drivers almost always are
experienced.
Post by tscottme
The FAA's
random checks are done in a manner different than random checks you
fear using EOBRs in trucks. The difference is there is hardly any
evidence of widespread violations in the airlines, there are plenty of
violations in trucking.
Well...let's factor in the numbers. How many planes are in the air versus
trucks on the roads? Couldn't that be used to put all of this in
perspective as well?
Post by tscottme
You quote from AvWeb about FAA demands for credentials and records of
pilots that fall under Part 91, that is the private pilot section of
the aviation regs. Part 121 are the comparable regulations to our
FMSCR sections. Airline crewmembers most certainly have been "ramped"
by FAA Inspectors. But once again there are seldom violations to be
found during any random checks. Most of these "ramp checks" are done
for cause after someone else in the company or alsewhere spots a
violation.
And in that case, it most certainly calls for a look at. This will not be
the case in what is being considered for our industry. If this happens, we
will be required to have vital and potentially incriminating information
downloaded with no such cause or reason. This is the core difference that I
object to.

It sets a new standard for law enforcement, where evidence is required to
be furnished outside of a court-of-law, and you could be tried, found
guilty, and fined with out ever having any chance to defend yourself,
because let's face it...what defense COULD be offered? The box will not
lie.
Post by tscottme
I don't expect EOBR rules to include anything about our pay.
I never said it would or should. The two separate, but related issues have
to go hand-in-hand.
Post by tscottme
As
virtually nobody in the industry seems to realize our pay is not
decided by Federal regulation. As such, the pay won't be increased by
demanding it be set by Congress.
First of all, pay standards ARE decided by federal law. Minimum wages,
overtime pay, and rules for those who are salaried are but a few examples.

Secondly, a pay raise is not what I am speaking of. I am talking about
standards that eliminate production based pay systems for drivers of
commercial vehicles, and eliminate the exemptions from the FLSA that
drivers of this industry have been subjected to for decades.

I personally don't have a problem with the system as it is today, and I
have certainly bantered this subject around with many people, as you have
witnessed yourself. I understand the system, and have made employment
decisions to work within it, and have experienced the good and bad of it.

I personally don't have any reason to call for an alteration of the pay
system, but others do, and I see their points. In regard to this issue, of
HOS violations, a re-structuring of the pay system that drivers receive
could very well be made that would take ALL incentive to violate the HOS
R&R's, if some common sense was applied.

Establishing the amount of pay is not the government's role, but they could
certainly eliminate exemptions and require methods for calculation of pay
be standardized.
Post by tscottme
What I hope will happen is that the
regulations and enforcement will be such that virtually everyone in
the industry recognizes that what they do will be noticed. If it
takes EOBRs for the customers and the "suits" in dispatch to stop
pretending that making all appointments for 6am is possible, that's
fine with me. If it takes EOBRs for customers and drivers to stop
pretending that 600 miles can be covered in 8 hours, if nobody is
looking, that's fine by me.
Theoretically, you are on target, but you are deviating from reality.
You've been out OTR, Scott. The problem is, those that are considering all
of this to be the great thing it can be, are not thinking it all the way
through.

The entire brunt of what will be lost in terms of production will fall once
again, on each and every driver's head. Will every shipper and receiver go
to a 24 hour schedule, so that trucks will be loaded or received as they
can legally be there? No. The losses to all will mount quickly. The long
lines of trucks waiting for service will be sporadic and add to the
problem. It's going to be pandemonium.

A revival of the parking issue for trucks forced to shut down will rear
it's ugly head. That box is going to litter the interstates with trucks
that cannot find a place to park, and who would not dare try and go on down
the road to find a safe place, when tomorrow they could be plugged in and
fined for doing so.

There is far too much that needs to be done BEFORE these devices are
required, to address concerns that will allow a driver to make a living,
stay safe at all times, and stay 100% compliant.
Post by tscottme
Having a huge number of drivers leave the industry isn't a catasrophe,
it's probably the best way to improve pay and conditions. If the
regulations can be tweaked so that the outlaws leave, then that's an
unqualified success.
It's not the outlaws that will leave the industry Scott. It's people like
ME, who will have had enough of being placed under a microscope BECAUSE of
the outlaws that have mucked things up.

The outlaws will simply alter their driving times and routes. They will
avoid the scales and inspection points like they do today, but to a greater
degree...plain and simple.
Post by tscottme
I don't try place a number or percentage on the number of bad actors
with a CDL, the reason I don't is because each bad actor can have such
a horrible impact. How many times does a car have to get pushed down
the road by a big truck, before they support more strict regulations?
You know I have stated many times that ONE accident is ONE too many, but
the reality of the situation is that this proposal will not do one thing to
stem the tide of accidents or "bad actors".

As I stated, and as others try to remind everyone continuously, this
industry travels millions of safe miles, and the numbers have been steadily
improving for more than a decade. Without question, more needs to be done,
and there are far more sensical solutions, outside of the desire to place
every truck under electronic surveillance, as an enforcement tool.
Post by tscottme
How many urine bombs do you have to knock over on your shoes before
you question the quality of drivers?
It's a separate issue. As disgusting as this is, there is no evidence that
people that urinate into bottles or baggies are the same people that are
violating HOS R&R's.

~Tony~
tscottme
2004-11-25 04:38:32 UTC
Permalink
Airlines are common carriers, commercial trucks are common carriers. As
such they both are reasonbly regulated in the public interest. It's the
same difference between a restaurant and your own kitchen. The Health Dept
has every right to invade the privacy of the restaurant kitchen and make
spot checks for food kept at proper temperature and cleanliness. The
restaurant owner has his privacy invaded routinely, and it doesn't mean we
live in a gulag.

If you want to persuade the Feds to get completely out of the transportation
regulation business, I'll support the effort, but it's not going to happen.
The EOBR proposal is perfectly reasonable and has already been imposed on
other common carriers, we are not being unfairely burdoned, but have been
able to avoid what others in comparable situations have already adapted to
easily.

Your pay and my pay are not the result of Federal regulation, as such it's
foolish to expect to improve HOS compliance with some Federal pay law. This
reminds me of drivers that claim they would be better drivers if only their
boss would give them a faster truck or just pay them more. That's an
excuse.

It seems bizarre to me that someone in the process of complaining about the
Feds monitoring HOS would propose the Feds get involved in our paycheck even
more than they already are involved. The HOS are a reasonable public safety
measure and those HOS ought to be monitored, not our pay. It's not a public
interest to see that my boss pays me enough to make me happy. It is a
public interest that my boss not work me so much that I fall asleep in
traffic. EOBRs monitors the performance that matters.

The proper comparison is between the common carrier airline and the common
carrier trucking company. To compare the freedom and privacy of a private
individual and a common carrier, or the professional that operates the
common carrier, is a big mistake. You don't need government certification
and oversight to remove a splinter from your hand, you do need all that to
perform open-heart surgery on patients from the community.

I don't want to get this off any more into aviation topics, but your
understanding of that industry is wrong. The vast majority of pilots fly
smaller planes. The glamourous airline pilot is a smaller portion of the
industry, not the average. Major airline pilots are paid by the flight
hour, not salary. They operate under their own HOS. The pay they earn is a
matter of private or union negotiation, not Federal regulation. The details
you mention about your brother-in-law's pay are not due to regulation but
private contract. There are many regional jet pilots flying for major
airlines, or their regioanl jet partners, that are earning less than $2,000
per month and living away from home half the month and sharing an apartment
with 4 other pilots in an expensive city the other half of the month. This
is why I try to explain the reality in aviation in here form time to time.
Most people think they understand the airlines because they saw some silly
movie or because they know a guy that retired from an airline and heard
about the huge paychecks. That's no more valid than judging trucking from
Smokey and the Bandit movies. I worked for the second largest flight school
in the nation, my roomates when I was trying to get entry in the industry
were getting the entry-level jobs. What most people think they know about
the glamarous world of flying and the truth are very different things.

EOBRs will allow the Feds to go after the trucking companies for violations.
Right now there is so much slack in the HOS and the paper logs that anyone
of us could operate as much or as little as we want and our boss could still
effectively argue he didn't know his driver was fudging his logbook. EOBRs
will take away the excuse that the driver didn't know how many hours he had
left, or how many hours he had already worked, or someone makes a "mistake"
in their math and acidentally worked too many hours.

EOBRs are perfectly reasonable, already common among other common carriers,
and monitor what is already required to be monitored in the HOS. It seems
to me all EOBRs would do is take away, or greatly reduce, the ability to
make fraudulent entries in the record. It seems to me that we drivers
should embrace a method which reduces the insane amount of hours we are
forced to work. Frankly, the 70 hours a week the Feds allow is about 10-20
hours more than I want, I'll be damned if I risk my license to find a way to
lie so my boss can get more hours out of me. A boss I know for a company I
know (plausible deniability) has recently rejuggled driver schedules using
wholly unrealistic estimates of driving times and time spent getting in and
out of various customers. What's the driver response to this? My
suggestion to everyone that will listen, which means about 1% of the
drivers, is to not rush like a maniac and take every shortcut possible to
make the unrealistic schedule work. No the answer is to drive exactly at
the speed limit, yield to everyone in sight, do the most thorough pre-trip
ever recorded, double-check the paperwork and the trailers, verify tire
inflation, etc, etc, and let the very important customer notice the loads
are late for a JIT operation. Without prompting many of these drivers will
instead rush like maniacs and try to make the schedule work, that teaches
the boss that the unrealistic schedule is OK, perhaps even has some fat to
be further trimmed.

My experience just doesn't support the notion that if the boss left drivers
alone that drivers would follow the HOS. Drivers will always have one
excuse or another, whether it's pay per mile or something else, I just don't
see large numbers of drivers using the HOS to their advantage but rather
often breaking the HOS as a matter of habit, if not pressure.

I'm highly suspicious when people make arguments which indicate that if all
of their problems were fixed first then they would of course follow the
rules. I just have never seen those people actually do that. Character is
what people do when nobody is watching. There is always an excuse for
breaking the rules and the drivers I see will break the rules when there is
no need for it. I'm sure few of the OTR drivers that came to the customer I
serviced for the last 5 years even saw one of the numerous speed limit signs
on the rural highway. They would drive as fast as the truck allowed and
depended on bear reports to keep them out of trouble. Now what possible
sense is there in risking a $100-$200 fine for speeding 10-15 MPH over a 15
mile segment of rural road? They aren't speeding enough to shave more than
2 minutes off the time required to drive legally. The length of road where
the speed was reduced from 70 to 55 mph was not long enough where the speed
reduction had any impact on delivery time, yet they must speed. Even a 1
mile segment through a rural town, where the speed dropped to 45 and the
cops were present 90% of the time was not any reason to slow down. "they
just put up the sign to collect revenue" was the call of the morons. Sure
driver, tell *me* it's just for revenue and then prove what an idiot you are
by getting a ticket in the speed zone. It happened all the time. What does
that say about where blame is placed for many of our problems?

One moron truck driver can easily wipe out, not just a few cars full of
people, but a small or medium sized trucking company by reckless operation
of one truck. An airliner has multiple other company employees present that
are able to report unsafe or illegal operation to the Feds or the company.
A sorry truck driver can rely on the fact that if he doesn't kill someone or
wreck the truck he can intimidate other drivers or behave unsafely for years
and his other drivers will even help him avoid the cops while he does it.
--
Scott

"Arafat remains in stable condition after dying in a Paris hospital."
TurboTrucker
2004-11-25 06:54:39 UTC
Permalink
Post by tscottme
Airlines are common carriers, commercial trucks are common carriers.
As such they both are reasonbly regulated in the public interest.
It's the same difference between a restaurant and your own kitchen.
The Health Dept has every right to invade the privacy of the
restaurant kitchen and make spot checks for food kept at proper
temperature and cleanliness. The restaurant owner has his privacy
invaded routinely, and it doesn't mean we live in a gulag.
You're getting off-track. A restaurant is not private in any sense of the
word. It is a business that is completely open to the public during
business hours. I don't see how there would be any expected privacy issue
to even consider, which is your point, but does not relate in a similar
manner.
Post by tscottme
If you want to persuade the Feds to get completely out of the
transportation regulation business, I'll support the effort, but it's
not going to happen. The EOBR proposal is perfectly reasonable and has
already been imposed on other common carriers, we are not being
unfairely burdoned, but have been able to avoid what others in
comparable situations have already adapted to easily.
I'm sorry to hear that you see it this way. I don't see the need to re-hash
what my points of objection are, because I think I have been quite clear.

You think it's a reasonable proposal. I do not. You will be happy to
continue on when they put them in there. I will not, and will refuse to
continue in this profession if and when they are instituted as proposed at
this point and time.
Post by tscottme
Your pay and my pay are not the result of Federal regulation, as such
it's foolish to expect to improve HOS compliance with some Federal pay
law. This reminds me of drivers that claim they would be better
drivers if only their boss would give them a faster truck or just pay
them more. That's an excuse.
I find no need for you to insult my line of thinking. If you do not
understand how the Federal Government has insinuated their authority in
other professions and regulated to some extent the way they are paid, then
what can I say? Nowhere have I proposed a "Federal pay law". What would you
term the Federal Labor Standard Act?

Scott, I know you must be a bit aware of the costs that a road driver
incurs out on the road. You also must be aware that what a driver netted 20
years ago went further than what we net today. As an Independent
Contractor, I have seen the net slide ever so slowly to a point where I can
see that I clearly made more fifteen years ago. How many people are going
be able to take a further erosion of their wages for the time they spend
away from home, and not take stock of whether or not it's worth it anymore?

I have taken many hours to think about this proposal, and I can see very
little in terms of positive outcome for the drivers, but can see a great
deal of negativity, including the way that this will affect driver pay.

In a previous post, I offered a scenario that you did not offer any
response to. I really want to see your thoughts on how you feel about it.
It is a PERFECT illustration as to how this little box will affect 2 days
out of your work week with one incident that would delay your nightly run.
If this is not an illustration as to how pay will be directly affected and
in a negative way, then nothing else ever will.
Post by tscottme
It seems bizarre to me that someone in the process of complaining
about the Feds monitoring HOS would propose the Feds get involved in
our paycheck even more than they already are involved. The HOS are a
reasonable public safety measure and those HOS ought to be monitored,
not our pay. It's not a public interest to see that my boss pays me
enough to make me happy. It is a public interest that my boss not
work me so much that I fall asleep in traffic. EOBRs monitors the
performance that matters.
I dunno Scott....you seem to be stuck in limbo and are not looking at the
big picture here. I don't know how to respond to the above without
escalating this into an argument, and I respect you too much to do that.

The reason that I include pay concerns in this issue, is because anything
that is going to limit a driver from being able to accumulate miles, which
is how most driver's pay is based, IS DIRECTLY going to affect what he
receives to spend at the end of the week.

I'm not talking about running miles in excess of expected and legal
amounts. I am talking about the miles that are lost due to extensive delays
by shippers, receivers, traffic, accidents, etc. There isn't a driver alive
or dead, who has not made up lost time in these situations, because as it
is today, we are usually NOT compensated for these delays. Even in cases
where we are compensated something for lost time, it is never the amount we
would have made if the wheels were turning. We lose money.

Absolutely and with no question, it is not the Government's role to
insinuate itself into private enterprise and dictate what an employee
makes, but they can and do regulate the STANDARDS by which compensation
must be calculated.
Post by tscottme
The proper comparison is between the common carrier airline and the
common carrier trucking company. To compare the freedom and privacy
of a private individual and a common carrier, or the professional that
operates the common carrier, is a big mistake. You don't need
government certification and oversight to remove a splinter from your
hand, you do need all that to perform open-heart surgery on patients
from the community.
We're going to have to disagree on that one too. Yes...they abide by strict
guidelines in greater percentages. They have electronic recording devices
onboard. They have higher levels of skills. They also retain a pay
structure that is in line with all of this, and it is NOT production
oriented. That alone is a difference that makes it a moot point.
Post by tscottme
I don't want to get this off any more into aviation topics, but your
understanding of that industry is wrong. The vast majority of pilots
fly smaller planes. The glamourous airline pilot is a smaller portion
of the industry, not the average. Major airline pilots are paid by
the flight hour, not salary. They operate under their own HOS. The
pay they earn is a matter of private or union negotiation, not Federal
regulation. The details you mention about your brother-in-law's pay
are not due to regulation but private contract. There are many
regional jet pilots flying for major airlines, or their regioanl jet
partners, that are earning less than $2,000 per month and living away
from home half the month and sharing an apartment with 4 other pilots
in an expensive city the other half of the month. This is why I try
to explain the reality in aviation in here form time to time. Most
people think they understand the airlines because they saw some silly
movie or because they know a guy that retired from an airline and
heard about the huge paychecks.
Without question, you bring up valid comparisons, and they too have been
subjected to the pressures of de-regulation just as we have. You know as I
do, that the lower pay amounts you quote are at the entry level. Regionals
top out near $90,000 a year, which is far less than what used to be the
norm just a decade ago. Those that fly for the big carriers are still
making six figure incomes, and will likely stay in the six figure range
despite recent concessions.

It's all moot anyway, because I don't care what an airline pilot makes. I
care what I make. I think anyone who reads this exchange will feel the
same. The concern is what these boxes will do to my compensation. I fail to
see ANYTHING associated with them that will increase my bottom line. I can
sure see how it will reduce it.
Post by tscottme
EOBRs will allow the Feds to go after the trucking companies for violations.
You can't be serious. The carriers are going to continue to get a pass. The
driver on the spot will take the heat, just like it always has been on the
road. Who do you think the ticket will be handed to? Not the carrier, I
assure you.

~Tony~
tscottme
2004-11-25 11:21:33 UTC
Permalink
I make the restaurant comparison precisely because you are using privacy
concerns to argue againt EOBRs and trucking companies are not private
anymore than a restaurant is private. They are commercial establishments
serving the public. As such they lose certain forms of privacy and their
records are subject to public or offical inspection. Likewise commercial
trucking companies are common carriers doing public business. They are
already subject to specific technical inspections in order to protect the
publics interest. All EOBRs do is change how one record of the carrier's
performance is measured.

It seems to me you main argument is against HOS record-keeping not EOBRs.
Every argument you make against the recorders stands equally well for
inspection of logbooks. The truck stop lawyers are wrong and logbooks and
license are subject to inspection precisely because we operate as common
carriers. EOBRs are simply a different manner of tracking HOS compliance.
They are nothing but more accurate or more honest recorders of what is
tracked by a logbook.

I haven't insulted your line of thinking, I've criticised what I find to be
errors in it. You did, in an earlier message in this thread, suggest that
the Feds make changes so that "pay for production" was removed. We are not
paid per mile or per hour due to Federal mandate. In fact, as you know, we
are exempt from the closest thing to a Federal mandate on pay, the FLSA.
Whether any of us is paid per mile, paid a percentage, or paid per hour is a
matter of negotiation. That negotiation is done between customer and
company or boss and employee. The Feds aren't making that decision.

I don't dispute that drivers have been saying "I made more money before X
than I do now." I assume they are telling the truth. I don't find the
point to be relevant. Nobody is guaranteed an income, or ability to buy
certains things from the job. The job pays what it pays and we chose to
accept it or go elsewhere. Thousands of drivers chosing to leave the
industry isn't a tragedy anymore than hundreds of thousands of people with
"normal jobs" chosing to change their jobs is a tragedy. It can be
personally devastating to find a need to change jobs but the people that
worked as crew members on passenger steam ships thought the same thing. We
too often intervene to keep the market from making the best use of
resources, doing it more often is only worse.

I re-read your Smyrna to Cookeville example, I'll deal with it if it
happens. Under current rules, only the vigilence he or the Safety Dept uses
will determine if any HOS violation will be captured by the company. If DOT
audits their records for that date or drivers involved they might know about
it as well. I have already had a few HOS issues and I use it to my
advantage. When an unreasonable schedule and a late customer causes me to
run out of hours I simply take the day off and he has to pay a lease driver
while I go home. When other drivers have gone over hours they also take at
least the minimum time off and the boss has to cover the early part of that
driver's schedule. I really hate it for him. A few drivers have learned
the hard way that the boss may ask, out of ignorance, for more than you are
allowed to do. Doing more than you are allowed to do will not be rewarded.
Cookeville will find the violation and both driver and boss get warned.
That didn;t have to happen too often before drivers learned to tell the boss
they don't have the hours to help him out. My boss will also have to have a
Plan B. With EOBRs I would have no ability to keep the violation from
happening, and he would have to deal with it. He could not ask me to fudge
the recorder, he couldn't yell at another driver in my presence to fudge his
recorder knowing that all the other drivers within earshot are getting the
same message. That's exactly my point about using the recorder to make the
HOS violation his problem, not my problem. A boss wouldn't be able to shop
around for the least legal driver he could find. The boss would know that
whatever driver he puts behind the wheel will have his time recorded as it
happens. So if that's the case, why would a boss hire a driver with
multiple HOS violations? A boss' options just got more safe and maybe the
pool of available drivers shrinks. What happens if there are fewer drivers
qualified to drive? Would pay go up or down if there were half as many
drivers tomorrow as today? Whatever actual decrease in driver pool would
occur, it would most likely be a decrease not an increase.

I also wouldn't hold out false hope that there will be some magic box that
will allow drivers to routinely manipulate any recorder. Since the whole
reason for being of EOBRs is to prevent the widespread tampering that
happens with logbooks, I'd bet money that the integrity of the device would
be monitored even better than companies monitor if their truck's electronics
have been tampered with. You may notice that despite the advertisements, we
don't all drive with some bogus box on the dash that lets us drive as fast
as the engine will go, many trucks are governed. We also don't all have
some othet bogus box that allows us to drive 80 in a 40 zone while the cops
shoot radar.
--
Scott

"Arafat remains in stable condition after dying in a Paris hospital."
TurboTrucker
2004-11-25 13:24:56 UTC
Permalink
Post by tscottme
I make the restaurant comparison precisely because you are using
privacy concerns to argue againt EOBRs and trucking companies are not
private anymore than a restaurant is private. They are commercial
establishments serving the public.
No they aren't Scott. The general public does not have the right to come up
to your truck, open the door, and enter your place of business, anymore
than you retain any right to open the door of their private automobile for
a look see. The general public does not have any right to open the back
doors of your trailer to see what's in there either.

Trucking companies CHOOSE the customers they serve. We are by all
standards, considered "private" enterprise. The only reason we are subject
to oversight is because we interact with the general public on the
highways.
Post by tscottme
As such they lose certain forms of privacy and their records are subject
to public or offical inspection.
You keep stating this, as if I have offered any challenge to suggest that
we are not subject to any oversight whatsoever. The fact is, I haven't.
Post by tscottme
It seems to me you main argument is against HOS record-keeping not
EOBRs. Every argument you make against the recorders stands equally
well for inspection of logbooks. The truck stop lawyers are wrong and
logbooks and license are subject to inspection precisely because we
operate as common carriers. EOBRs are simply a different manner of
tracking HOS compliance. They are nothing but more accurate or more
honest recorders of what is tracked by a logbook.
No....and this is why; If the events of the Rodney King incident had been
witnessed by a person, rather than recorded on videotape, how much
attention would have been paid to it by anyone?

People make complaints of abuse by an officer all the time, and as damaging
as the video recording appeared to be, the general public was only getting
half the story as it turned out. Those officers were tried based upon that
electronic evidence that was used by the media to convict those officers in
the court of public opinion.

The jurors in that case were the ONLY ones that eventually were presented
all the evidence and ultimately exonerated the officers involved. What was
the result of that? We witnessed on national television the aftermath.
Post by tscottme
I haven't insulted your line of thinking, I've criticised what I find
to be errors in it. You did, in an earlier message in this thread,
suggest that the Feds make changes so that "pay for production" was
removed. We are not paid per mile or per hour due to Federal mandate.
When did I ever suggest that we were?
Post by tscottme
In fact, as you know, we are exempt from the closest thing to a
Federal mandate on pay, the FLSA. Whether any of us is paid per mile,
paid a percentage, or paid per hour is a matter of negotiation. That
negotiation is done between customer and company or boss and employee.
The Feds aren't making that decision.
You're right....the Feds are not making those decisions. Tell me Scott,
when was the last time you actually "negotiated" the pay method and amount
for the job you hold? When you hired on with the carrier you currently work
for, and the pay method and amount was offered to you, did you look at the
person and state...."I can't accept that. I will only work for you if you
pay me on an hourly basis, including all time that I am held up and
performing accessorial duties." Of course not.

You did what every other driver out here has done for years. You took the
terms offered, and the only thing you negotiated in your mind was whether
or not they were acceptable to you.
Post by tscottme
I don't dispute that drivers have been saying "I made more money
before X than I do now." I assume they are telling the truth. I
don't find the point to be relevant.
They are, and I fail to see why you find it irrelevant. I can think of no
other industry or career where people make a twenty or thirty year
investment in terms of committment, and find themselves making less than
they did when they started, and are somehow not supposed to be somewhat
discouraged about that fact.

~Tony~
tscottme
2004-11-25 14:31:56 UTC
Permalink
Nobody said the general public has a right to open the truck or trailer, and
this is the last "I never said..." points I will make with you. If I didn't
say it I won't let you force me into an argument about it. Yes or no are
trucking companies common carriers? If you want to buy a Mack and a
trailer, ask your friends at church if they need their furniture moved
around the state, you may still have an expectation of operating with the
same privacy you have when driving your car. But once a trucking company
begins to operate as a common carrier, offering it's service to the public
it is subject to a whole raft of requirements, including proper inspection
of records. You can't use your privacy rights to prevent an inspection of
your logbook or the contents of your trailer when you operate as a common
carrier.

You announced this thread about EOBRs and have spent most of it complaining
about pay and how the Feds have created this pay for production economy.

I negotiate with my boss every day, just like I negotiate with my electric
company every day. When I decide to show up for work or turn on the light
switch I have accepted the terms of the negotiation. When I choose to work
here and not there I have accepted the terms of the negotiation. When the
boss changes my schedule and I quit I didn't accept the terms of the
negotiation. I did more than what other drivers do every day, I refused
work from other companies and I refused to work at this company until they
offered a job that fit my circumstance. If I did what some other drivers do
I would ask the recuiter if they planned on ripping me off and when they
answered "no, we respect our drivers" I would take the bait.

You "can think of no other industry or career where people make a twenty or
thirty year investment in terms of committment, and find themselves making
less than they did when they started"? You have heard of farmers, telephone
monopolies, Eastern AirLines, Studebaker, and others haven't you? Just
because someone stays in an industry is no guarantee of making any money or
as much money as they made before. How exactly would we have everything
we've had over the last 100 years if most people didn't stop working on
small inefficient farms? How would we have the economy he now have if AT&T
had to hired every woman in the country to work as a switchboard operator?
Somehow we managed to succeed beyond anyone else while people stopped
working on farms and AT&T overcame the switchboard. Economic change is
hard, sometimes very hard, that is normal. What was abnormal was the idea
some people have that the world today should be like the world in 1950 when
most of the world was too poor to make anything or too destroyed to make
anything and the US was the only remaining industrial supplier able to
supply the world. That was abnormal.
--
Scott

"Arafat remains in stable condition after dying in a Paris hospital."
TurboTrucker
2004-11-25 18:41:54 UTC
Permalink
Post by tscottme
Nobody said the general public has a right to open the truck or
trailer, and this is the last "I never said..." points I will make
with you. If I didn't say it I won't let you force me into an
argument about it.
???????
Post by tscottme
Yes or no are trucking companies common carriers?
No. Some are. The term "common carrier" went away, for the most part, with
the elimination of the ICC and the creation of the FMCSA. Today, most
carriers are registered as Contract Carriers, where the rates are
negotiated on a private basis with no oversight. Household movers are still
regulated and must file tariff agreements with the FMCSA. It doesn't make
any difference. Not to be short or anything, but at the wheels of each and
every truck is a taxpaying United States citizen, and I don't give a
tinker's damn what the trucking company is considered to be.
Post by tscottme
If you want to buy a Mack and a trailer, ask your friends at church if
they need their furniture moved around the state, you may still have
an expectation of operating with the same privacy you have when
driving your car. But once a trucking company begins to operate as a
common carrier, offering it's service to the public it is subject to a
whole raft of requirements, including proper inspection of records.
You can't use your privacy rights to prevent an inspection of your
logbook or the contents of your trailer when you operate as a common
carrier.
Scott, with all due respect, each and every time you reply, you seem to
insinuate that I have some problem with the enforcement actions as they
exist today. I gladly hand over my logbook when asked to, and have no
reservation in doing so. I do not expect any "right" to privacy. I have
stated clearly that I expect to retain the "Liberty" and "trust" to do my
job without unreasonable oversight, as a person with an established
personal record of working within the rules and regulations and attaining a
record of safety.
Post by tscottme
You announced this thread about EOBRs and have spent most of it
complaining about pay and how the Feds have created this pay for
production economy.
That is not at all what I have said, and I again resent your putting those
words in my mouth, so to speak.

I'm terribly sorry, but I see no reason to continue to discuss this with
you if you are going to resort to misinterpreting my comments. I'm
surprised that you have.

~Tony~
tscottme
2004-11-26 15:42:19 UTC
Permalink
How can the term common carrier have gone away yet some carriers still are?
I'm referring to the vast number of trucking companies that operate such as
Swift, US Express, Prime, Werner, Averitt, JB Hunt, Schneider, and on and
on. If a trucking company offers it's services to the public, as opposed to
offering private transportation in-house between facilities of one company,
they are operating in the sense as I use common carrier. They are operating
in the same sense as an airline, cruise ship, Greyhound bus, a restaurant,
etc are operating in public. EOBRs are nothing more but glorified, less
fraudulent, logbooks. The Feds don't need anymore of your liberty to
examine an EOBR than they need to look at your logbook. They invade not one
bit more of your privacy by looking at the EOBR as they do when they look at
your logbook. The big difference is the logbook has zero data integrity
built into it.

Quoted from your third message in this thread"
"Think about it. If they were to simply institute a pay system requirement
that would overturn the present-day production oriented system of pay for
drivers, then what driver would have reason to violate HOS?"

After that message you have made several other mentions of the Feds
insinuating themselves into the industry and that effect on driver pay.

Besides I currently work where we are on the clock, and logic or not, at
least half the drivers still rush like mad to get finished ASAP. There
isn't going to be some change in pay or regulations that causes drivers to
magically change the way they work. Drivers paid per mile think pay per
hour will solve all their problems and drivers on the clock think if they
were given more time to meet a schedule their problems would be solved.
It's nothing more than "the grass is always greener."
--
Scott

"Arafat remains in stable condition after dying in a Paris hospital."
TurboTrucker
2004-11-26 21:29:20 UTC
Permalink
Post by tscottme
How can the term common carrier have gone away yet some carriers still are?
Common Carrier's as coined in this industry, was not in reference to
serving the public. Previously, a common carrier filed rate tariffs that
were on file with the ICC, and they were bound to bill freight charges
based on those rates on file. Household movers still fall into that class,
and they do serve the public-at-large. They are the only segment of the
industry that is still regulated, and are required to file tariff rates.
Post by tscottme
I'm referring to the vast number of trucking companies that
operate such as Swift, US Express, Prime, Werner, Averitt, JB Hunt,
Schneider, and on and on. If a trucking company offers it's services
to the public, as opposed to offering private transportation in-house
between facilities of one company, they are operating in the sense as
I use common carrier. They are operating in the same sense as an
airline, cruise ship, Greyhound bus, a restaurant, etc are operating
in public.
For the second time....no they do not. In each of the examples that you
compare trucking to, there is an absolute and distinct difference. Every
one of those businesses serve the PUBLIC on a DIRECT level. They open
their doors to serve the public-at-large, and the public is the DIRECT
customer. They transport them and/or feed them.

FedEx, UPS, and others do operate planes that do not transport people, and
only freight, and those are the only valid comparisons to our industry,
with a hitch. They serve the public-at-large as well DIRECTLY in addition
to private enterprise.

The vast majority of the trucking industry, with the exception of household
goods carriers a few others that do serve the public directly in some
capacity, serves private enterprise from beginning to end. The best analogy
I can offer is to basically say that as it is, I can stand at the door of
MY business, and let in any customer I choose, and refuse entry to those
that I do not, and I do not have to have any reason for doing so. John Q.
Public has no right to my services, nor am I bound to serve anyone under
the sun. The same cannot be said for your comparison examples.
Post by tscottme
EOBRs are nothing more but glorified, less fraudulent,
logbooks.
As proposed, they are nothing of the sort, and I'm not going to repeat the
distinct difference in how they are going to use them as a means of
intrusive enforcement that differs from all others. It's been offered.
Post by tscottme
The Feds don't need anymore of your liberty to examine an
EOBR than they need to look at your logbook. They invade not one bit
more of your privacy by looking at the EOBR as they do when they look
at your logbook. The big difference is the logbook has zero data
integrity built into it.
Careful...the same could be said of the Pilot's logbook as well. As I
understand it, they don't even have to have it in their possession when
asked for it during a ramp check. They are quite free to present it at a
later time and place.
Post by tscottme
Quoted from your third message in this thread"
"Think about it. If they were to simply institute a pay system
requirement that would overturn the present-day production oriented
system of pay for drivers, then what driver would have reason to
violate HOS?"
After that message you have made several other mentions of the Feds
insinuating themselves into the industry and that effect on driver pay.
It in no way implied that I felt that the present day method of pay was the
result of any Federal intervention or creation, Scott. This is not to say
that I do not see where it might be high time that they DO intervene and
address the subject of production based income, that DOES presently give
people reason to violate HOS R&R's.

I made mention of the fact that the Fed's do insinuate themselves into
compensation for workers in OTHER lines of work. The FLSA is an example and
proof of that fact. Interstate Trucking has always been exempted from these
requirements, and you absolutely know that.
Post by tscottme
Besides I currently work where we are on the clock, and logic or not,
at least half the drivers still rush like mad to get finished ASAP.
I suspected this, and it completely explains why you are on the opposite
side of this issue. Your life as it is today, is not going to be affected
one iota, as long as you retain your position as it is today, and retain
the pay structure that you receive.

Have you considered how that might change, if EOBR's are instituted, and
they revamp the pay for linehaul drivers due to delays and pay for
additional non-productive hours that are causing them to lose money? As it
is under the exemptions that exist, they are not bound by law to pay you on
an hourly basis. They are free to make that change at any time.
Post by tscottme
There isn't going to be some change in pay or regulations that causes
drivers to magically change the way they work.
Really? Then explain why you are not out here OTR. Explain why you are not
with a carrier that compensates and calculates your pay based on mileage or
percentage. What is the core reason why you don't "rush like mad to get
finished ASAP"?

You drove OTR for a few years, and I can't help but offer a quote that has
been oft repeated time after time, although I can't attribute it to the
author...

"How soon we forget..."
Post by tscottme
Drivers paid per mile
think pay per hour will solve all their problems and drivers on the
clock think if they were given more time to meet a schedule their
problems would be solved. It's nothing more than "the grass is always
greener."
Why not strive for both?

That little black box isn't going to stop highways deaths, nor will it
improve safety numbers either. All it will do is put a little more pressure
around the throats of those that play be the rules to choke this industry a
little more, and make outlaws out of even more people than exist today.

~Tony~
tscottme
2004-11-28 01:28:08 UTC
Permalink
The cargo ailrlines are governed by exactly the same rules and regulations
as passenger airlines. About the only difference between "freight dogs" and
American and Delta are the number of seats onboard and flight attendants.
The aircraft and the crewmembers must meet exactly the same requirements as
those of passenger airlines. There is no distinction relevant to this
discussion, so far. If you recognize the comparison between trucking and
freight airlines, then you have recognized the comparison I was making to
begin with.

The only similiarity between a truck driver's logbook and a pilot's logbook
is the word "logbook." A pilot's logbook is more like a resume' or MVR than
our daily logbook. As such it's virtually never relevant to safe daily
operation of any flight what details may be in the pilot's logbook.

Once agian I marvel that you start the thread decrying the Feds intervention
into our privacy with regards to EOBRs and simultaneously want them to
intervene improve pay. My experience and what I see gives me no reason to
think that a more fair set of rules would do much to decrease drivers
violating various rules. I think a huge number of drivers enter or stay in
the industry because they want to get away or to do things their own way.
That's how I can explain people speeding when there is no benefit and people
taking other "shortcuts" to make less money.

I've read the feds ANPRM about EOBRs and I don't see where your level of
anxiety comes from. Nothing they say indicates that EOBRs will be used to
change pay details or some of the other fears expressed in this thread. But
maybe you can read minds better than I. How exactly will EOBRs change pay
for linehaul drivers? My pay is based on the contract between the auto
plant and my trucking company. It isn't set in relation to other drivers
within my company. My company has Dedicated drivers pad per hour, paid per
mile, and paid per trip. In every case they are paid based on the contract
between the customer and the company. And as any of us, I can have my pay
rate changed. And just as I decide when I show up for work, if it happens
I'll decide whether to show up afterwards.

I am no lnger OTR because I haven't found an OTR company that allows my pet
and that I trust, which pays enough more than I can make by staying where
I'm at. I was happy being OTR before Old Dominion bought out my last
company and tossed out my pet and asked me to drive a truck without benefit
of maintenance. Temperamentally, I'd prefer to be OTR than my current job.
But right now I'm pretty close to being able to take 100% of my
profit-sharing with me if I leave so it's unlikely I'll leave until that
milestone is met. When I'm at work "I don't rush like mad" because that is
when I make mistakes and I don't need the boss thinking that one particular
day when everything goes far better than normal is a normal day and shorten
my schedule. There's rarely a moment,during any of my days, when I'm not
working exactly as if my boss is in the passenger seat. My company deducts
time for a lunch period, so I make sure to take a lunch period, often at a
time which best suits my company's needs, not mine. My pay easily covers my
bills with some left over. I only ocassionaly look at my pay check, except
to see if my hours are about right.

You have no right to say my opinion is only a matter of how I am paid. I
have worked on both sides of this issue and haven't had one opinion when I
was OTR and a different opinion now. But if it makes you feel better to
think my long history of being a hard ass on trucking matters is simply a
matter of some personal advantage, go ahead. I have stated for years not
only that "all of us should work exactly as if the boss and the cops were
always watching", but have always had the view that if a driver starts
depending on being able to break the rules to survive, he's already gone. I
don't recall a time before I was trying to think like a pilot or engineer
about whatever I was doing, but ever since I got in that frame of mind
playing by the rules was primary. This isn't just a blind faith that the
rules are always right but that the collected brain power of the experts is
probably worth following unless they are proven wrong. Also as a grizzled
flight instructor told me, when you don't know whether you should or
shouldn't, think about how the accident review board will see this decision.
All that has led me to the point where my first instinct is that the easy
way is probably to be avoided and, I should do things the right way if only
so that it becomes a habit and I don't have to tense up if someone important
is watching or the situation demands it. Without constant attention to
keeping sloppiness and shortcuts away, they will creep in and get you when
you don't expect it or can least afford it. I grew up pretty poor and had
to sometimes scheme to get by. Now that I've done the things that allow me
to play by the rules, I do it every chance I get. The psychic peace of
never having to worry about who might find out what I'm doing is worth as
much as a regular paycheck. I won't allow myself to live by depending on
having the right story for the right person.
--
Scott

"Arafat remains in stable condition after dying in a Paris hospital."
TurboTrucker
2004-11-28 04:45:39 UTC
Permalink
Post by tscottme
Once agian I marvel that you start the thread decrying the Feds
intervention into our privacy with regards to EOBRs and simultaneously
want them to intervene improve pay.
You "marvel" it?

Calling for a little common sense intervention that would change a big
reason as to WHY people strive to work longer and illegally, certainly is a
better solution than to call for a "strike" to bring about the same
result...dontcha think?
Post by tscottme
My experience and what I see
gives me no reason to think that a more fair set of rules would do
much to decrease drivers violating various rules.
Why not? You are paid by the hour. You probably do not face any of the
problems that plague most OTR drivers. Your pay is consistent. Your runs
are consistent. You deal with the same people on a daily basis. You have no
incentive or reason to violate the R&R's, now do you? You are failing to be
objective on this, Scott, and it's all too transparent.

What gives you any insight into how things would be, IF such a change was
made industrywide? As it stands now, not everyone can seek the same type of
working conditions that you have, because the standard of compensation is
vastly different from the one you work under, and most are delegated to
deal with it the best way they can.
Post by tscottme
I think a huge
number of drivers enter or stay in the industry because they want to
get away or to do things their own way. That's how I can explain
people speeding when there is no benefit and people taking other
"shortcuts" to make less money.
We could sit here and list all the things that drivers do, and why they do
it, and it wouldn't mean a thing. I can't help but note that your opinion
of most drivers is very soured. I don't know why you feel this way, and why
you want to paint the industry with a wide brush, but the fact of the
matter is that most drivers are in those trucks to make a living. They have
families to clothe, feed, and shelter. While I am just as troubled about
the rogue element that has found it's way into the industry and the
problems that we are discussing, I will not forget, nor ignore that the
vast majority does operate legally and safely.

There is no secret whatsoever that trucking involves a certain amount of
freedom compared to a job where you have a supervisor hanging over your
shoulder all the time. That used to be a very good side benefit of
exchanging all that time away from home to make what was once a very fine
living. That cannot be said any longer for far too many. What a driver
banks each week has absolutely been whittled down, and it HAS to be a
consideration. We don't work for the fun of it, Scott.

De-regulation was the catalyst that began all of this, and it is why we are
here today debating this very issue. It did what it was supposed to do,
which was to break the ranks of the unions, and allow market forces into
the industry to drive down the cost of moving freight.

The rogue element, as bad as it may be, or as bad as it tarnishes us, is
still minute when all is brought into focus. Our industry, with over
6,000,000 CDL holders, is involved in around 5000 deaths a year, with only
1400 or so being directly laid at the feet of a truck driver. 97,000 people
die each year in road accidents where no truck at all is involved. On
average, each one of those trucks that are used in an OTR capacity averages
driving eight times the amount of miles, compared to the average automobile
driver, in that same year.

In the same period of time, 700,000 die of heart disease. 550,000 die of
cancer. 400,000 die each year from smoking tobacco. 167,000 die of stroke.
29,000 take their own lives. 17,000 are murdered.

The case can almost be made that a BIG MAC is more deadly than a truck
driver. Americans encounter hundreds, if not thousands of trucks each day,
but they might eat one or two Big Macs a week. Which is more likely to kill
them first? The Big Mac.
Post by tscottme
I've read the feds ANPRM about EOBRs and I don't see where your level
of anxiety comes from. Nothing they say indicates that EOBRs will be
used to change pay details or some of the other fears expressed in
this thread.
Good God, Scott. Can you resist twisting my words? When did I EVER offer
that an EOBR would change a pay "detail"?

Can you not see that if a driver is delayed for any reason, and it forces
him to shut down before he would have had he NOT been delayed, and he is
forced by that box to remain 100% true to the rules, that he will lose
money? Less miles....less money. It's inevitable.

If the box records every little detail of a driver's day, and he is
detained and the information downloaded and is cited for each and every
little violation that occured in the previous eight days, that he will THEN
be forced to part with money?

There is no possible way that a driver can operate within every little
provision of those rules 100% of the time, and this has been no secret to
anyone. It doesn't take a genius to understand all the little things that
drivers fudges a little here and there to make his day work out. I am not
referring to those that drive 20 hours straight or who cover 5000 miles in
a week.

The scenario I posed as a problem that you could very well encounter was
one of many that we face on a daily basis. Your response was "I'd deal with
it". I don't know how you will "deal" with it post insertion of an EOBR,
but I'll bet my left arm as to how you would handle it if it happened
tomorrow. You'd drive that one hour in violation and log it legally.

The rules as they exist do not coincide with the average day of the average
driver. They never have, and there isn't a driver alive or dead that
doesn't or didn't know that to be a fact. If the box forces complete and
undeviated compliance with the R&R's as they exist today, drivers are going
to be making less. There is no question about it. Making up a little here
and there, that EVERY driver has done to salvage the good out of a bad
circumstance, will not be an option any longer.

From where you sit, you will not likely lose very much, if anything at all.
From where I sit, I might lose a little or a lot. Many will likely lose far
more than I could even imagine, because they work in conditions that I
would never touch, and are not paid for much that I am. I don't know about
you, but I want the maximum worth possible, paid to me for the time I
dedicate to the job. I want it to be worth my while to stay away from home
for weeks at a time, and accumulate something for the enjoyment of life,
when I take time to enjoy it. As I have often written into this group...."I
work to live. I don't live to work".
Post by tscottme
But maybe you can read minds better than I. How exactly
will EOBRs change pay for linehaul drivers? My pay is based on the
contract between the auto plant and my trucking company. It isn't set
in relation to other drivers within my company. My company has
Dedicated drivers pad per hour, paid per mile, and paid per trip. In
every case they are paid based on the contract between the customer
and the company. And as any of us, I can have my pay rate changed.
And just as I decide when I show up for work, if it happens I'll
decide whether to show up afterwards.
Averitt pays you that way voluntarily. They are not bound to do so. If they
begin losing money due to paying you more hours, and Nissan refuses to fork
over more on an hourly basis as well, then your pay structure may be
changed by Averitt to allow Averitt to make as much as they always have.
You're not under any illusion that they will lose money and allow you to
make more, are you?

You're right....you'll have a decision to make if it ever comes to that,
and it may or may not happen. You might feel quite snug presently. I have
no doubt that management is already kicking this issue around and weighing
what they will do, if and when it comes down the pike.
Post by tscottme
You have no right to say my opinion is only a matter of how I am paid.
We are each expressing our opinions. The fact that you are currently paid
on an hourly basis is a factor that is likely to be influencing your stance
that your pay will not be affected negatively by an EOBR. I just happen to
believe that it goes a bit deeper than that.

You've already admitted that if you were to finish early on your runs, that
your "schedule" would be changed to reflect less hours allowed for you to
finish your runs. Why would they do that? Nissan pays them "X" amount of
hours for your run, contractually, so why would they take anything away if
you happened to finish a little early each day? It puts more in their
pocket if they do. The incentive is not there to finish early, because you
WOULD lose money. You are on the clock...right? Finish early, and you clock
out early. You make less. By the same token, I'm sure that if you are
delayed for circumstances outside of your control, you remain on the clock
and are currently paid the extra hours until you finish....right? Are you
paid overtime, over 40 hours per week? I'll bet not. Thank that little
exemption from the FLSA for that one too.

You were around when I bantered the group on pay issues. I was on the odd
end of that, and took insult after insult for taking the side that you
currently find yourself standing. I know that the pay structure has been
what it is for years, and why it is what it is. I defended it. I didn't
come uncorked over the new HOS R&R's and have found them to work much
better for me, although I cannot attribute any credit to affecting my net
income one way or another. When the CDL was implemented, I was among the
first Georgians to obtain one. I've responded to new and improved
regulations rather well and without reservation.

The pay changes, be they up or down as the case may be over the past two
decades, have been due to market forces and been done by the industry
within itself to address shortages of drivers/lessors, or try and retain
the good ones.

This proposed issue is one that I see as a change that will not do anything
it is supposed to accomplish and will drive compensation down for EVERY
facet of the industry that is doing this for profit or income. That's issue
number one.

Number two, I see a bold new frontier on the horizon, where Americans will
no longer be given a sense of trust, and will be monitored continuously for
misbehavior, then metaphorically burned at the stake. Regardless of any
"right" or "expectations", I find it this proposed idea a violation in the
extreme to an expected amount of privacy and freedom that this country was
founded on.

Now, as painful as those two words are to some, I only have to look back
into history a few hundred years, to understand that the people that
"founded" this country, came here to escape an overbearing government, that
was persecuting it's people relentlessly for their religious beliefs and/or
taxing them to the hilt to feed the government that was making their lives
unbearable. How many people DIED to allow us to call ourself "free"?

What lines are going to be crossed before we find ourselves in the same
situation? Don't we learn anything? Maybe I am making a big deal about
this, but I do it because I SEE the danger in it.

Why not just find a trio of higher intelligence beings, throw them in a
pool of water, let them "see" the crime before it happens, give our
overburdened court system a break, and put people away before they have a
chance to commit a crime? "Pre-Crime" worked very well in the movie, didn't
it?
Post by tscottme
I have worked on both sides of this issue and haven't had one opinion
when I was OTR and a different opinion now. But if it makes you feel
better to think my long history of being a hard ass on trucking
matters is simply a matter of some personal advantage, go ahead.
Scott, we share basically the same opinions and the same hard line stances
most of the time. I'm not trying to FIGHT you on this. You seem to think
that I am. I'm trying to look at this issue, and discuss it as a rational
person, and am trying desperately to look at it like I look at everything
else before I take a stance on it....from all sides. You know that I am all
about safety. I live it, breath it, and defend it. This proposal, standing
alone, will complicate the trucking industry to an extremely frustrating
level and we are at the boiling point already, unless there are other
common sense changes that go along with it.
Post by tscottme
I have stated for years not only that "all of us should work exactly as
if the boss and the cops were always watching", but have always had
the view that if a driver starts depending on being able to break the
rules to survive, he's already gone.
Don't you see that there are circumstances where people feel as if they
have no choice? There are those that place themselves in bad situations,
and there are those that do not see the sense in what they are limited to.
Again, I'm not speaking of extreme examples of misbehavior. I'm talking
about something that will affect a day's pay, where one will have worked
for literally nothing by sticking to the letter of the law. If breaking a
rule will eliminate that from happening, who in their right mind would not
set their morals aside to accomplish their goals?

Look at our tax code. Now there's a set of rules that just ACHES to be
taken apart and examined for common sense. The people that are charged with
enforcing them do not even understand them. How many people violate the
rules each April? Millions, if each and every return was measured against
something equal to a black box. Some do it ignorantly, some doubtfully, and
some blatantly.

We agree that the R&R's are needed. Do you agree with, or see the sense in
every last one? Who could? One of the most maddening things that has always
been in place, is the ever present legalese written into ever law...these
bits of wisdom are created and meant to keep the common person in line, and
yet, how many people can completely understand a law as it is written? Only
those that write them have a chance of ever doing so.

~Tony~
Amy D
2004-11-28 05:02:25 UTC
Permalink
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by tscottme
Once agian I marvel that you start the thread decrying the Feds
intervention into our privacy with regards to EOBRs and simultaneously
want them to intervene improve pay.
You "marvel" it?
Calling for a little common sense intervention that would change a big
reason as to WHY people strive to work longer and illegally, certainly is a
better solution than to call for a "strike" to bring about the same
result...dontcha think?
Post by tscottme
My experience and what I see
gives me no reason to think that a more fair set of rules would do
much to decrease drivers violating various rules.
Why not? You are paid by the hour. You probably do not face any of the
problems that plague most OTR drivers. Your pay is consistent. Your runs
are consistent. You deal with the same people on a daily basis. You have no
incentive or reason to violate the R&R's, now do you? You are failing to be
objective on this, Scott, and it's all too transparent.
What gives you any insight into how things would be, IF such a change was
made industrywide? As it stands now, not everyone can seek the same type of
working conditions that you have, because the standard of compensation is
vastly different from the one you work under, and most are delegated to
deal with it the best way they can.
Post by tscottme
I think a huge
number of drivers enter or stay in the industry because they want to
get away or to do things their own way. That's how I can explain
people speeding when there is no benefit and people taking other
"shortcuts" to make less money.
We could sit here and list all the things that drivers do, and why they do
it, and it wouldn't mean a thing. I can't help but note that your opinion
of most drivers is very soured. I don't know why you feel this way, and why
you want to paint the industry with a wide brush, but the fact of the
matter is that most drivers are in those trucks to make a living. They have
families to clothe, feed, and shelter. While I am just as troubled about
the rogue element that has found it's way into the industry and the
problems that we are discussing, I will not forget, nor ignore that the
vast majority does operate legally and safely.
There is no secret whatsoever that trucking involves a certain amount of
freedom compared to a job where you have a supervisor hanging over your
shoulder all the time. That used to be a very good side benefit of
exchanging all that time away from home to make what was once a very fine
living. That cannot be said any longer for far too many. What a driver
banks each week has absolutely been whittled down, and it HAS to be a
consideration. We don't work for the fun of it, Scott.
De-regulation was the catalyst that began all of this, and it is why we are
here today debating this very issue. It did what it was supposed to do,
which was to break the ranks of the unions, and allow market forces into
the industry to drive down the cost of moving freight.
The rogue element, as bad as it may be, or as bad as it tarnishes us, is
still minute when all is brought into focus. Our industry, with over
6,000,000 CDL holders, is involved in around 5000 deaths a year, with only
1400 or so being directly laid at the feet of a truck driver. 97,000 people
die each year in road accidents where no truck at all is involved. On
average, each one of those trucks that are used in an OTR capacity averages
driving eight times the amount of miles, compared to the average automobile
driver, in that same year.
In the same period of time, 700,000 die of heart disease. 550,000 die of
cancer. 400,000 die each year from smoking tobacco. 167,000 die of stroke.
29,000 take their own lives. 17,000 are murdered.
The case can almost be made that a BIG MAC is more deadly than a truck
driver. Americans encounter hundreds, if not thousands of trucks each day,
but they might eat one or two Big Macs a week. Which is more likely to kill
them first? The Big Mac.
Post by tscottme
I've read the feds ANPRM about EOBRs and I don't see where your level
of anxiety comes from. Nothing they say indicates that EOBRs will be
used to change pay details or some of the other fears expressed in
this thread.
Good God, Scott. Can you resist twisting my words? When did I EVER offer
that an EOBR would change a pay "detail"?
Can you not see that if a driver is delayed for any reason, and it forces
him to shut down before he would have had he NOT been delayed, and he is
forced by that box to remain 100% true to the rules, that he will lose
money? Less miles....less money. It's inevitable.
If the box records every little detail of a driver's day, and he is
detained and the information downloaded and is cited for each and every
little violation that occured in the previous eight days, that he will THEN
be forced to part with money?
There is no possible way that a driver can operate within every little
provision of those rules 100% of the time, and this has been no secret to
anyone. It doesn't take a genius to understand all the little things that
drivers fudges a little here and there to make his day work out. I am not
referring to those that drive 20 hours straight or who cover 5000 miles in
a week.
The scenario I posed as a problem that you could very well encounter was
one of many that we face on a daily basis. Your response was "I'd deal with
it". I don't know how you will "deal" with it post insertion of an EOBR,
but I'll bet my left arm as to how you would handle it if it happened
tomorrow. You'd drive that one hour in violation and log it legally.
The rules as they exist do not coincide with the average day of the average
driver. They never have, and there isn't a driver alive or dead that
doesn't or didn't know that to be a fact. If the box forces complete and
undeviated compliance with the R&R's as they exist today, drivers are going
to be making less. There is no question about it. Making up a little here
and there, that EVERY driver has done to salvage the good out of a bad
circumstance, will not be an option any longer.
From where you sit, you will not likely lose very much, if anything at all.
From where I sit, I might lose a little or a lot. Many will likely lose far
more than I could even imagine, because they work in conditions that I
would never touch, and are not paid for much that I am. I don't know about
you, but I want the maximum worth possible, paid to me for the time I
dedicate to the job. I want it to be worth my while to stay away from home
for weeks at a time, and accumulate something for the enjoyment of life,
when I take time to enjoy it. As I have often written into this group...."I
work to live. I don't live to work".
Post by tscottme
But maybe you can read minds better than I. How exactly
will EOBRs change pay for linehaul drivers? My pay is based on the
contract between the auto plant and my trucking company. It isn't set
in relation to other drivers within my company. My company has
Dedicated drivers pad per hour, paid per mile, and paid per trip. In
every case they are paid based on the contract between the customer
and the company. And as any of us, I can have my pay rate changed.
And just as I decide when I show up for work, if it happens I'll
decide whether to show up afterwards.
Averitt pays you that way voluntarily. They are not bound to do so. If they
begin losing money due to paying you more hours, and Nissan refuses to fork
over more on an hourly basis as well, then your pay structure may be
changed by Averitt to allow Averitt to make as much as they always have.
You're not under any illusion that they will lose money and allow you to
make more, are you?
You're right....you'll have a decision to make if it ever comes to that,
and it may or may not happen. You might feel quite snug presently. I have
no doubt that management is already kicking this issue around and weighing
what they will do, if and when it comes down the pike.
Post by tscottme
You have no right to say my opinion is only a matter of how I am paid.
We are each expressing our opinions. The fact that you are currently paid
on an hourly basis is a factor that is likely to be influencing your stance
that your pay will not be affected negatively by an EOBR. I just happen to
believe that it goes a bit deeper than that.
You've already admitted that if you were to finish early on your runs, that
your "schedule" would be changed to reflect less hours allowed for you to
finish your runs. Why would they do that? Nissan pays them "X" amount of
hours for your run, contractually, so why would they take anything away if
you happened to finish a little early each day? It puts more in their
pocket if they do. The incentive is not there to finish early, because you
WOULD lose money. You are on the clock...right? Finish early, and you clock
out early. You make less. By the same token, I'm sure that if you are
delayed for circumstances outside of your control, you remain on the clock
and are currently paid the extra hours until you finish....right? Are you
paid overtime, over 40 hours per week? I'll bet not. Thank that little
exemption from the FLSA for that one too.
You were around when I bantered the group on pay issues. I was on the odd
end of that, and took insult after insult for taking the side that you
currently find yourself standing. I know that the pay structure has been
what it is for years, and why it is what it is. I defended it. I didn't
come uncorked over the new HOS R&R's and have found them to work much
better for me, although I cannot attribute any credit to affecting my net
income one way or another. When the CDL was implemented, I was among the
first Georgians to obtain one. I've responded to new and improved
regulations rather well and without reservation.
The pay changes, be they up or down as the case may be over the past two
decades, have been due to market forces and been done by the industry
within itself to address shortages of drivers/lessors, or try and retain
the good ones.
This proposed issue is one that I see as a change that will not do anything
it is supposed to accomplish and will drive compensation down for EVERY
facet of the industry that is doing this for profit or income. That's issue
number one.
Number two, I see a bold new frontier on the horizon, where Americans will
no longer be given a sense of trust, and will be monitored continuously for
misbehavior, then metaphorically burned at the stake. Regardless of any
"right" or "expectations", I find it this proposed idea a violation in the
extreme to an expected amount of privacy and freedom that this country was
founded on.
Now, as painful as those two words are to some, I only have to look back
into history a few hundred years, to understand that the people that
"founded" this country, came here to escape an overbearing government, that
was persecuting it's people relentlessly for their religious beliefs and/or
taxing them to the hilt to feed the government that was making their lives
unbearable. How many people DIED to allow us to call ourself "free"?
What lines are going to be crossed before we find ourselves in the same
situation? Don't we learn anything? Maybe I am making a big deal about
this, but I do it because I SEE the danger in it.
Why not just find a trio of higher intelligence beings, throw them in a
pool of water, let them "see" the crime before it happens, give our
overburdened court system a break, and put people away before they have a
chance to commit a crime? "Pre-Crime" worked very well in the movie, didn't
it?
Post by tscottme
I have worked on both sides of this issue and haven't had one opinion
when I was OTR and a different opinion now. But if it makes you feel
better to think my long history of being a hard ass on trucking
matters is simply a matter of some personal advantage, go ahead.
Scott, we share basically the same opinions and the same hard line stances
most of the time. I'm not trying to FIGHT you on this. You seem to think
that I am. I'm trying to look at this issue, and discuss it as a rational
person, and am trying desperately to look at it like I look at everything
else before I take a stance on it....from all sides. You know that I am all
about safety. I live it, breath it, and defend it. This proposal, standing
alone, will complicate the trucking industry to an extremely frustrating
level and we are at the boiling point already, unless there are other
common sense changes that go along with it.
Post by tscottme
I have stated for years not only that "all of us should work exactly as
if the boss and the cops were always watching", but have always had
the view that if a driver starts depending on being able to break the
rules to survive, he's already gone.
Don't you see that there are circumstances where people feel as if they
have no choice? There are those that place themselves in bad situations,
and there are those that do not see the sense in what they are limited to.
Again, I'm not speaking of extreme examples of misbehavior. I'm talking
about something that will affect a day's pay, where one will have worked
for literally nothing by sticking to the letter of the law. If breaking a
rule will eliminate that from happening, who in their right mind would not
set their morals aside to accomplish their goals?
Look at our tax code. Now there's a set of rules that just ACHES to be
taken apart and examined for common sense. The people that are charged with
enforcing them do not even understand them. How many people violate the
rules each April? Millions, if each and every return was measured against
something equal to a black box. Some do it ignorantly, some doubtfully, and
some blatantly.
We agree that the R&R's are needed. Do you agree with, or see the sense in
every last one? Who could? One of the most maddening things that has always
been in place, is the ever present legalese written into ever law...these
bits of wisdom are created and meant to keep the common person in line, and
yet, how many people can completely understand a law as it is written? Only
those that write them have a chance of ever doing so.
~Tony~
LOL. Primo proof that Tony has actually started driving a truck. He
used to sound just like Scott. Not that Scott DOESN'T drive....but you
would have never have caught Tony cutting an OTR driver any "slack" for
making a living back "when".

amy
TurboTrucker
2004-11-28 05:16:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Amy D
LOL. Primo proof that Tony has actually started driving a truck. He
used to sound just like Scott. Not that Scott DOESN'T drive....but
you would have never have caught Tony cutting an OTR driver any
"slack" for making a living back "when".
I was wondering when you were going to pop up again to tweak my nipples.

Don't take any offering on this issue as an endorsement to violate the
rules in a willing manner, simply for the sake of making more money. My
stance has not changed a bit. I may have softened to the point that I look
at things without tunnel vision all the time.

Ms. Bimbette...I don't have reason or need to convince you of a thing.

I've put more miles in reverse on my trucks than you will ever have going
forward.

~Tony~
Amy D
2004-11-28 05:41:51 UTC
Permalink
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by Amy D
LOL. Primo proof that Tony has actually started driving a truck. He
used to sound just like Scott. Not that Scott DOESN'T drive....but
you would have never have caught Tony cutting an OTR driver any
"slack" for making a living back "when".
I was wondering when you were going to pop up again to tweak my nipples.
Don't take any offering on this issue as an endorsement to violate the
rules in a willing manner, simply for the sake of making more money. My
stance has not changed a bit. I may have softened to the point that I look
at things without tunnel vision all the time.
Ms. Bimbette...I don't have reason or need to convince you of a thing.
I've put more miles in reverse on my trucks than you will ever have going
forward.
~Tony~
No one is trying to "tweak your nipples", you pervert.

A big DUH on driving a truck more in reverse than me forward. I've
never claimed to drive one forward, idiot. I can drive a car in reverse
a helluva long way, though. :) Oh, BTW, Dave Smith, my Probe shows MPH
in reverse! :) I'm too old to drive that fast in reverse now, though. :)

Tony, you don't have to "convince" me of anything......

amy
Dave Smith
2004-11-28 12:38:04 UTC
Permalink
Post by TurboTrucker
Ms. Bimbette...I don't have reason or need to convince you of a thing.
I've put more miles in reverse on my trucks than you will ever have going
forward.
Yes, but she can drive faster in reverse than you can. She claims to have
driven cars at more than 80 mph in reverse. And she thinks that we should
believe her :-)
TurboTrucker
2004-11-28 15:34:20 UTC
Permalink
Post by Dave Smith
Yes, but she can drive faster in reverse than you can. She claims to
have driven cars at more than 80 mph in reverse. And she thinks that
we should believe her :-)
It would explain her scrambled brains...

~Tony~
Realitytrucker
2004-11-29 13:20:52 UTC
Permalink
Subject: Re: Electronic On-Board Recording Devices
Date: 11/28/2004 9:34 AM Central Standard Time
Post by Dave Smith
Yes, but she can drive faster in reverse than you can. She claims to
have driven cars at more than 80 mph in reverse. And she thinks that
we should believe her :-)
It would explain her scrambled brains...
~Tony~
I am a little confused. She mentioned something about her probe and MPH. I
would think that the faster she used her probe the faster the batteries would
wear out.
Amy D
2004-11-29 05:40:40 UTC
Permalink
Post by Dave Smith
Post by TurboTrucker
Ms. Bimbette...I don't have reason or need to convince you of a thing.
I've put more miles in reverse on my trucks than you will ever have going
forward.
Yes, but she can drive faster in reverse than you can. She claims to have
driven cars at more than 80 mph in reverse. And she thinks that we should
believe her :-)
Show me where I said 80. :)

amy
Dave Smith
2004-11-29 13:40:11 UTC
Permalink
Post by Amy D
Post by Dave Smith
Yes, but she can drive faster in reverse than you can. She claims to have
driven cars at more than 80 mph in reverse. And she thinks that we should
believe her :-)
Show me where I said 80. :)
From Oct 6 in the ABS thread
Post by Amy D
No John Deere. :) Farm permits even included Camaros. :)
amy <who was a pro at driving backwards down dirt roads at 80 plus >mph before
she ever took her driver's license test> :)
SLW TRK
2004-11-28 06:44:27 UTC
Permalink
Tony wrote;
Post by tscottme
<snip>
Can you not see that if a driver is delayed for
any reason, and it forces him to shut down
before he would have had he NOT been
delayed, and he is forced by that box to remain
100% true to the rules, that he will lose money?
Less miles....less money. It's inevitable.
That's exactly why they asked for comments in
this (latest) ANPRM

*(I like the last line of the second paragraph)

Question 2: May a driver who uses an automatic on-board
recording device amend his/her record of duty status during a trip?
Guidance: No. Section 395.15(i)(3) requires [that] automatic on-
board recording devices, to the maximum extent possible, be
tamperproof and preclude the alteration of information collected
concerning a driver's hours of service. If drivers who use automatic
on-board recording devices were allowed to amend their record of duty
status while in transit, legitimate amendments could not be
distinguished from falsifications. Records of duty status maintained and
generated by an automatic on-board recording device may only be amended
by a supervisory motor carrier official to accurately reflect the
driver's activity. Such supervisory motor carrier official must include
an explanation of the mistake in the remarks section of either the
original or amended record of duty status. The motor carrier must retain
both the original and amended record of duty status.

We are reevaluating this guidance in the light of current EOBR
capabilities. The guidance reflects two assumptions: that amendments
would likely be made to change information already entered; and that the
time the revision is made (and the times and duty status being revised)
would be erased from the EOBR's memory. The second assumption does not
account for the EOBR's ability (an ability probably shared by many
AOBRDs) to maintain an internal audit log.\4\ If the EOBR can accurately
record the date and time of an entry, it could be programmed to prompt
the driver to enter duty status or comments at any time the vehicle is
stopped, the driver leaves the vehicle (if the vehicle has a door
sensor), or the ignition is turned on or off. The EOBR also could prompt
the driver to enter the time the work shift began and whether it
included off-duty periods. We believe question 2 of the regulatory
guidance may need to be revised to allow the driver to amend the duty
status record, provided the system maintains both the original and
amended records.

*Seems even the fed can't do the job without two logbooks.. :-)

__
Nick
TurboTrucker
2004-11-28 08:17:34 UTC
Permalink
Post by SLW TRK
*Seems even the fed can't do the job without two logbooks.. :-)
Talk about confusing...

~Tony~
tscottme
2004-11-28 15:21:54 UTC
Permalink
You write "Good God, Scott. Can you resist twisting my words? When did I
EVER offer that an EOBR would change a pay "detail"?"

after writing: "Have you considered how that might change, if EOBR's are
instituted, and they revamp the pay for linehaul drivers due to delays and
pay for additional non-productive hours that are causing them to lose money?
As it is under the exemptions that exist, they are not bound by law to pay
you on an hourly basis. They are free to make that change at any time."

That's how I "twist your words. Your words and your emphasis on pay issues
during a thread about EOBRs is how I use my psychic powers to detect your
connection between recorders and pay.

You bet I'm sour on many people in this industry it's because I come from a
field where what is typical in this industry would get you kicked out
immediately of that industry. Unlike some in this thread that have only
worked OTR and presume to know OTR and libehaul and dedicated, I have worked
both circumstances of this argument so it's not just some theoretical notion
of how drivers paid per mile will operate, it's direct observation. I have
also worked, not just with long-term dedicated drivers but, with a constant
merry-go-round of lease drivers. And hardly without exception the lease
drivers behave exactly as the driver with which I have such low regard.
Even there is no theoretical reason why a driver paid per hour should rush
every lease driver and a fair number of long-term drivers still do it.
That's what tells me plenty of drivers will violate the rules even if there
is no good reason to do so. You know it's like seeing one driver after
another litter, 5 feet from a trash can, or a pile of litter left everywhere
trucks stop to indicate that it isn't just the rare individual that is
bringing us all down.

Now matter how many scenarios you come up with where the driver runs out of
hours 1 minute or 1 inch before completing a trip, the exact same can happen
under current logbook rules. So your argument isn't with recorders so much
as it is with any HOS limit. Because no matter what the particulars of the
HOS or EOBRs will be, anytime a definite limit is set you can always put a
driver just a moment from completing the trip and out of hours. The same
point you make about the recorders cutting driver pay can and are made with
regards to truck that only run the speed limit or even under the speed
limit. I don't see anything wrong with compliance with the law.

The Feds haven't even decided if they will use recorders, what they will
record, how they will access the data, and you have already figured that all
out for them and began to hyperventilate over those decisions.

It's very funny that without pointing to one example of when I have changed
my view, say on HOS or now on this recorder issue, you still attribute my
view on how I am paid. This is just like your unwarrented hysteria about
EOBRs, you are going to be hysterical and you will claim my views are based
on what is in your mind regardless of the facts of the matter.

You need not lecture me about how my company pays me especially when every
detail you know about the situation comes from what I tell you. If you
insist on telling me about my company you might at least pay attention when
I tell you about the situation which proves harmful to your suppositions
about drivers paid per hour.

Despite you writing "I'm trying to look at this issue, and discuss it as a
rational person", you are reading my mind and reading the minds of the Feds
about an issue that they haven't even decided if or how they will use for
the purpose of explaining why you have so much anxiety. Like Amy, you are
looking for any excuse to proclaim the Gulag is open for business. EOBRs do
nothing more than what the logbook already does, only without all the lying.
If the Feds have good reason to believe that the logbook isn't an accurate
picture of what is going on, and since you agree there are many drivers that
lie on their logbook, then a better method must be found. EOBRs seem
perfectly reasonable as they have been used in similar industries for years.
Try suggesting a better alternative. It's not as emotionally freeing as
just having a fit about something that is only a vague idea, but that would
be the rational thing to do.
--
Scott

"Arafat remains in stable condition after dying in a Paris hospital."
TurboTrucker
2004-11-29 07:04:48 UTC
Permalink
Post by tscottme
You write "Good God, Scott. Can you resist twisting my words? When did
I EVER offer that an EOBR would change a pay "detail"?"
after writing: "Have you considered how that might change, if EOBR's
are instituted, and they revamp the pay for linehaul drivers due to
delays and pay for additional non-productive hours that are causing
them to lose money? As it is under the exemptions that exist, they are
not bound by law to pay you on an hourly basis. They are free to make
that change at any time."
That's how I "twist your words. Your words and your emphasis on pay
issues during a thread about EOBRs is how I use my psychic powers to
detect your connection between recorders and pay.
I was referring to AVERITT...revamping THEIR compensation package for
linehaul drivers. Do you really think that I am so ignorant, that I do not
know who pays you and who sets those standards?
Post by tscottme
You bet I'm sour on many people in this industry it's because I come
from a field where what is typical in this industry would get you
kicked out immediately of that industry.
That may well be true, but making comparisons to the two vastly different
modes of transportation, taking into consideration the level of skills
needed to operate them, doesn't really make the cut as a valid comparison.
The differences and the stakes at hand are also vastly different.

A brain surgeon, who fixes the inner workings of the human skull is not
comparable to a mechanic, who fixes the inner workings of an automobile. A
patrol officer in the smallest of towns doesn't compare very well to that
of a Secret Service Agent. The Captain of a fishing vessel is not going to
have much in common with a man that is at the helm of a cruise ship.

Driving a class 8 truck is not on par with piloting an aircraft. I'm quite
sure that if you were to find yourself in a social setting, and began to
try and make it sound as if you were comrades of the transportation
industry, you might find the nose of the pilot pointed down at you in a
belittling manner.
Post by tscottme
Unlike some in this thread
that have only worked OTR and presume to know OTR and libehaul and
dedicated, I have worked both circumstances of this argument so it's
not just some theoretical notion of how drivers paid per mile will
operate, it's direct observation.
Why mince words, Scott? It's been basically you and I bantering this
around. My resume has never been published into this group, and you are
incorrect to make such an assumption that my views are "theoretical". The
fact is, that the operation I sold in 2000 could be aptly described
primarily as a linehaul operation. I had a staff of drivers that were paid
on an hourly, mileage, and percentage basis. Most of the drivers served one
customer that had several outlets. They were served anywhere from a once
per day to five times per day basis, as well as transferring goods from
warehouse to warehouse. There were a few trucks that did OTR.

I'm going to counter your observations with that of my own. If there is
anything at all that has to do with how a driver views or honors HOS R&R's,
it is how he is paid. Because I tried to run a clean operation, I not only
made sure that the people I hired had the utmost respect for the rules, I
always made sure that any problems that arised that would tempt one to
violate the rules, was negated by conveying at every opportunity that they
would be paid enough out of my pocket, over and above the usual if
necessary, to forgo that temptation. I absolutely paid out a bunch of money
under that policy, but I rarely had drivers caught in violation of HOS, and
NEVER for charges of falsification.

The bottom line, and what we should be able to agree on, is that it all
stems from the quality of people that one hires, as to how things are going
to turn out. I lay this deficiency at the feet of those in charge of hiring
drivers and the carriers that operate carelessly in that department. The
type of driver that you look down upon would have never graced the steps of
one of my trucks. Despite any and all laws that prevent it, I absolutely
practiced descrimination in who I hired, and on criteria of my own.
Post by tscottme
I have also worked, not just with
long-term dedicated drivers but, with a constant merry-go-round of
lease drivers. And hardly without exception the lease drivers behave
exactly as the driver with which I have such low regard.
Even there is
no theoretical reason why a driver paid per hour should rush every
lease driver and a fair number of long-term drivers still do it.
Every lease driver? There's that wide brush again. I'm quite sure that I
know far more people that own their trucks than you have, and again, I know
better. Without question, I've met several that were not respectful of any
oversight, but these are STILL a minority, Scott. I see no reason why all
the dregs of the industry lined up to parade in your arena, and avoided
mine.
Post by tscottme
That's what tells me plenty of drivers will violate the rules even if
there is no good reason to do so. You know it's like seeing one
driver after another litter, 5 feet from a trash can, or a pile of
litter left everywhere trucks stop to indicate that it isn't just the
rare individual that is bringing us all down.
Wait a minute. Are you telling me that you have had opportunity to witness
something that I know doesn't exist as a valid comparison? None of those
lease operators were paid by the hour.

I dunno....I've been out here for quite a few years, and while I am
disusted by lazy individuals that drop garbage wherever they see fit, I
have only personally witnessed a handful of times that it was done within
my eyesight. For it to be as bad as you assert, and considering how many
trucks enter and leave a truckstop each day, I would think that seeing the
asphalt or concrete would be out of the question if most of us did this.

My biggest pet peeve is the oft discussed urine bomb, and as much as I'd
like to catch someone dropping one of those and plastering their foreheads
with it when I do, I only encounter them on the ground a few times per
month.

I refuse to paint all truckers with the same sized brush you do. My
observations are far different than yours. I really hate to offer this, but
maybe your dim view of truckers has more to do with your coming from a
career that attracts a higher class of people, so to speak, and you're not
extremely happy with that descention into working along side those that you
do not feel a kinship with.

Don't take this the wrong way. I have a terrible habit of sizing people up
initially upon first glance, but I always try to delve a little deeper and
actually try to learn something about them, if the situation dictates it.
I'm not a very social person by nature, but I have found over the years,
that by actually talking to someone for a few minutes, I have been very
surprised at just how wrong my initial feelings were.

I feel superior at times, because I know that I am a cut above some or even
most in some areas, but I strive to constantly keep that in check by
attempting to understand others. Human behavior is fascinating. It can be
truly disgusting, but fascinating as well.
Post by tscottme
Now matter how many scenarios you come up with where the driver runs
out of hours 1 minute or 1 inch before completing a trip, the exact
same can happen under current logbook rules.
Yep..it can. No dispute there.
Post by tscottme
So your argument isn't
with recorders so much as it is with any HOS limit. Because no matter
what the particulars of the HOS or EOBRs will be, anytime a definite
limit is set you can always put a driver just a moment from completing
the trip and out of hours.
That's a good point, but as it is, when we do encounter these little
problems, we can fudge a little, make it all work out, and no one is the
wiser or harmed by us for doing so.

So...can't you see how a recording device, that will hold us to those same
unreasonable absolutes, and will unreasonably complicate the lives of those
that are just being reasonable?

Scott, you're no Saint, and I don't have to know a thing about you to offer
this. You've made your little "adjustments" to a log book during your
career. Would you honestly put a number the number of times that you have
done this? Is it less than 10?....less than 50?...less than 100?

Have you lived your entire life without violating a rule, regulation, or a
law? Of course not. There isn't a person alive that has not misbehaved to
some degree. Now, had there been ways to detect each and every instance of
your misbehaviors, and you were prosecuted for each and every one of those
instances, what effect would this have had on you? Would you only be out a
few bucks? Would you have a felony record? Would you be in prison today?

Me?....I can think of far too many things I've done in my youth that would
have altered the course of my life, and not in a positive way, had I been
caught doing them. I never hurt anyone as far as I know, but I did some
things that absolutely make me ask myself...."what the hell was I
thinking?". Those things are not who I am today, and because I have this in
the back of my memory to live with, I cannot sit around and take a holier-
than-thou stance on everything, or for very long.

This is EXACTLY why I do not care to see any instance where ANY group of
people, under ANY valid or imagined criteria, are so stringently monitored
to the point that no mistakes in judgment or even willing violations of a
MINOR nature, are held against people and then prosecuted for them. This is
a first step in that direction, and I happen to have the unfortunate
circumstance of being one with a personal interest, or who may be affected
initially if it is allowed to procede.

How many ways do I have to say it? This is a dangerous FIRST step, even if
completely justified (it isn't), in letting the Government control our
lives to an unreasonable level, in an attempt to accompish the goal of
correcting misbehavior.

I would be equally outraged if this were affecting any other group of
people, despite what you might think. My objections are not for selfish
reasons. I can walk away from this industry tomorrow, never look at a
another truck, and I will more likely than not, finish my life with no
problem. I need not work another day anywhere to do this.
Post by tscottme
The same point you make about the
recorders cutting driver pay can and are made with regards to truck
that only run the speed limit or even under the speed limit. I don't
see anything wrong with compliance with the law.
Another good counterpoint. I can't dispute that either. A slow truck will
to some degree, reduce the maximum amount of miles one can legally
accumulate in a period of time, over one that could go faster. However, a
person can make a personal decision to not drive that slower truck.

I must be an enigma. I never worried about what I losed by driving slower,
even when I didn't own the truck I drove. Today, I drive a truck that can
well exceed the speed limits in any area of the country. I do not know what
it's top speed is. It will never see it for as long as I own it. I have not
altered my driving patterns, despite all. I still drive at all times
between 55-60 mph. The money I save on fuel more than offsets what I would
make trying to crank out more miles by driving faster.
Post by tscottme
The Feds haven't even decided if they will use recorders, what they
will record, how they will access the data, and you have already
figured that all out for them and began to hyperventilate over those
decisions.
Unless they would be accessed as I have discerned from all that I have read
on the subject, there would be no point whatsoever to having them in the
trucks, if the justification is to eliminate falsified logging. I think
that my apprehension is right on the mark, because I know who has had the
Government's ear, and who hasn't. I have read many articles on the subject,
and what has been kicked around is absolutely what I am opposed to. They
want irrefutable proof of what each and every driver is doing. They want
on-the-spot access to this proof and immediate enforcement measures taken
place when a driver is in violation.

The only thing in question is who "they" are.

The only thing that I am hopeful about with Bush in the Whitehouse for a
second term, and as it pertains to this issue, is that for the most part,
he has been a little more behind the trucking industry than most. It's not
that he like s us. He knows how trucking affects the economy. His decision
to sign anything into law, will be carefully considered, unless he does not
care how his Presidency is viewed. He is set for life. He will basically
answer to no one ever again, and certainly not to a voter.
Post by tscottme
It's very funny that without pointing to one example of when I have
changed my view, say on HOS or now on this recorder issue, you still
attribute my view on how I am paid. This is just like your
unwarrented hysteria about EOBRs, you are going to be hysterical and
you will claim my views are based on what is in your mind regardless
of the facts of the matter.
You think I'm being hysterical....and I think you're being biased because
you don't stand to lose much if they put one in your truck, assuming you
are still where you are at that point and time. I think it safe to say that
we each disagree with the other's assessment of the other, as to why we are
taking an opposite stance on the issue. At least it's on the table.
Post by tscottme
You need not lecture me about how my company pays me especially when
every detail you know about the situation comes from what I tell you.
If you insist on telling me about my company you might at least pay
attention when I tell you about the situation which proves harmful to
your suppositions about drivers paid per hour.
Who's lecturing? Scott, I really hate to tell you this, but I am not an
idiot. I have been involved with this industry in several different facets,
with most of it OUTSIDE of a truck. My views and knowledge do not start and
end behind the wheel of a truck. I have studied many legal aspects of this
industry. There is nothing surrounding your present job with Averitt, that
is secretive or unique.

Your present pay package can be amended at any time by AVERITT, and for any
reason. Now that's the long and short of it. It's not a lecture. It's not a
theory. It's legal fact. Any factor whatsoever that affects their bottom
line may result in affecting your bottom line.
Post by tscottme
Despite you writing "I'm trying to look at this issue, and discuss it
as a rational person", you are reading my mind and reading the minds
of the Feds about an issue that they haven't even decided if or how
they will use for the purpose of explaining why you have so much
anxiety.
I'm truly disappointed. I thought you were above resorting to lashing out
when you are confronted with an alternative opinion. Apparently I was
mistaken.

Despite YOUR assessment of any level of perceived "anxiety" that I have, I
happen to think that anything that affects us should be well discussed
BEFORE it becomes a problem.
Post by tscottme
Like Amy, you are looking for any excuse to proclaim the
Gulag is open for business.
That's a low blow, and you're capable of better. Please take note that I
have been completely civil towards you, and I won't be prodded to retorting
in kind.
Post by tscottme
EOBRs do nothing more than what the
logbook already does, only without all the lying. If the Feds have
good reason to believe that the logbook isn't an accurate picture of
what is going on, and since you agree there are many drivers that lie
on their logbook, then a better method must be found. EOBRs seem
perfectly reasonable as they have been used in similar industries for years.
As they are proposed, they will be used against this industry in a manner
that is completely and absolutely different from all other applications
where they exist presently, and unprecedented as an immediate means of
enforcement.

If you find this "reasonable", then nothing will likely change your mind,
until one is used against you in an unreasonable manner. I predict with no
reservation that if they are installed in all trucks as proposed, you will
live to eat those words.
Post by tscottme
Try suggesting a better alternative. It's not as emotionally
freeing as just having a fit about something that is only a vague
idea, but that would be the rational thing to do.
Again...a low blow. What a shame.

Thanks for the debate. I'm hitting the road for a few weeks....

~Tony~
tscottme
2004-11-29 19:34:28 UTC
Permalink
You didn't say you were talking about companies, or one particular company
changing details of pay. You mentioned recorders and then mentioned "they"
revamping pay schedules. You have spent most of this thread talking about
the Feds and how they are destroying the lives of drivers. You might try
distinguishing between Feds and companies, when you mean one and not the
other. Nothing I've seen in my company indicates that they way they pay a
driver to move freight for one account or another is based on the HOS. As
various company reps have stated, and what fits what I've seen, is that my
company decides how to pay a driver based on the details of whatever
customer contract applies. Most of the dedicated customers pay the trucking
company a fixed amount per trip, but the trucking company pays some drivers
per mile, some driver per hour, and some drivers per trip. The trucking
company has even changed from one manner to another manner, in addition to
paying more or less as the account changes. I suggest drivers do as
companies do, adapt to changing situations not greet every change as the end
of the industry.

The comparisons I've made between the relevant segments of aviation and
trucking are right on the money and instructive if anyone cares to read
them. Most of those comparisons are dealing with the regulatory and safety
aspects that are most similar. You are doing what many others have done in
this industry, when shown that others with an excellent safety atmosphere
are going above and beyond what we are expected to do, seek a way to ignore
their experience so as to remain in the good old ways. I'd ask if you
haven't piloted an aircraft how is it you know there so little commonality
between that and drving a truck? Anyone with any insight into this
industry, and many people outside this industry have every reason to look
down their nose at us, we give them lots of ammunition. I certainly never
volunteer I drive a truck unless I know very well who will hear. I take
pride in what I do, the way I do it, but don't have any desire for people
that don't know me very well to think I'm like many of the other drivers I
see.

You may have been an excellent manager of drivers but the effort to made to
take out the incentive to break the rules sounds very foreign to any company
I've ever heard about. I've worked for a couple of hard-ass companies and
one "do-what-you want" company and I see driver performance as relatively
stable. There is some variation in HOS compliance due to company policy,
but the array of other short-cuts and bad habits I've detailed are stable
across those companies.

I've mentioned my contempt for "lease drivers" several times. I refer to
temp-drivers or drivers working for driver-leasing companies. Almost
without exception they are of the lowest quality I've ever had the
misfortune of working with. Hardly a one of them can be trusted with the
easiest task, they behave well below even the most minimally professional
manner, and seem to take great pride in being able to take more risks than
anyone else, not to mention their great skill in breaking a truck within
seconds of closing the door. My company and other trucking companies use
these lease-drivers to meet their driver shortfall. How these trucking
companies think badly serving a customer with drivers falling well below the
trucking company's minimum standard is a benefit is beyond me.

The difference between what you may see and what I see I think is a
difference between looking for somthing and only noticing the most extreme
example, maybe even witnessing it by accident. You tell me over the next
few weeks if you don't see a huge number of drivers doing the following once
I point these out to you: drivers pouring their remaining coffee out of the
driver side window so it puddles where the next driver will have to step;
approaching intersections and setting up the truck to take the turn as if
there will never be any other vehicle sitting at their proper waiting
location, the truck drivers will aim to hit the apex of a turn, even driving
on the wrong side of the road for the purpose of getting around a corner at
a higher speed; drivers parking their truck in the way at a customer only
for the purpose of minimizing their walk to where they guess the office is,
without regard to who else might they be blocking, "me first"; blocking
other trucks to open their doors when they had a better option out of the
way. I could name many others but those are the ones you will see, if you
look.

I don't see how this industry is to improve if we all just take turns
expressing why we shouldn't be held to higher standards or why we would meet
higher standards but not now, I'm in a hurry, or nobody is watching. My
general disgust with drivers in this industry is precisely because I have
seen people from the same or better background rise to a very high level of
professionalism, even when they were paid worse than us, got far less
consideration than us, or when they valued far less than us. In that
industry, form the first day being safe was not just a phrase a few people
were smart enough to utter from time to time, it was the minimum required of
even the lowest level participant. That industry has become the gold
standard for operating safely in a complex environment and has contributed
to a wide range of other industries. Our industry on the other hand seems
to offer little but excuses and low standards and complaints. When someone
tells you they would be better if the situation were different, they are
telling you a lie.

Your preemptive hysteria abut recorders is no different than all those on
the radio that have heard about the thousands of 1mph speeding ticket
violators. There is nothing presently published that indicates the Feds are
going to violate drivers based on the tiny infractions you've mentioned.
There is nothing to indicate every moment of every day will be searched for
violations of the picky nature you anticipate. Nothing in current practice
indicates to me that the same people that pick and choose which violations
they pursue vigourously and those that are noted before moving on will also
become human robots following EOBR records with no discretion. Yet one
notice by the Feds asking for comment on a sensible EOBR proposal and its
the end of the world and the industry.

I've already told you about my previous life and specifically mentioned the
great freedom I now enjoy because I will not depend on keeping what I do
private from authorities. You don't have to be perfect to recognize the
benefits of not breaking the rules. But if someone is desperate for
permission to avoid following the rules this sort of point might be useful.
Since the government allows us to operate vehicles far in excess of what
relatively unmonitored private individuals can operate, reasonable
monitoring is warranted. There is nothing in the EOBR request that
indicates they are taking one more thing from you or I. The Feds are
entitled to monitor and CDL drivers's HOS complaince, test for drugs, and
inspect their vehicle and cargo. EOBRs only change how they will inspect
HOS. If the paper logbook had been demonstrated to be reliable and accurate
we wouldn't be discussing the remedy for their shortcomings.

A restaurant, a doctor, a hospital, an airline, a cop are all subject to
some small manner or lessened privacy precisely because they operate in the
public's interest and various mistakes by them are so costly. I don't see
why we should be exempt from similar reasonable measures, when we have
plenty that we've been hiding. If a chain of restaurants had been
systematically forging Health Dept inspections for the last 30 years, I
doubt just taking the bogus reports out of the file would satisfy anyone.
We'd demand a more stringent inspection protocol.
--
Scott

"Arafat remains in stable condition after dying in a Paris hospital."
TurboTrucker
2004-11-29 22:10:11 UTC
Permalink
Post by tscottme
You didn't say you were talking about companies, or one particular
company changing details of pay. You mentioned recorders and then
mentioned "they" revamping pay schedules. You have spent most of this
thread talking about the Feds and how they are destroying the lives of
drivers.
No I haven't Scott, and I challenge you to quote one sentence that said
that the "Feds are destroying the lives of drivers". You don't seem to be
capable of handling alternative views or challenges very well. You are
assessing what you read, based on your own interpretation.
Post by tscottme
You might try distinguishing between Feds and companies,
when you mean one and not the other. Nothing I've seen in my company
indicates that they way they pay a driver to move freight for one
account or another is based on the HOS.
Who said they did? Your pay will be affected by what they (the carrier) can
afford to pay you, and due to any number of factors that influence profit.
Obviously, if there is no profit, they will not be able to afford to pay
you for very long. We all depend on production for profit. If production is
hindered, profit will drop in response. It's not hard mathematics.
Post by tscottme
As various company reps have
stated, and what fits what I've seen, is that my company decides how
to pay a driver based on the details of whatever customer contract
applies. Most of the dedicated customers pay the trucking company a
fixed amount per trip, but the trucking company pays some drivers per
mile, some driver per hour, and some drivers per trip. The trucking
company has even changed from one manner to another manner, in
addition to paying more or less as the account changes.
If you understand that, then why dance all around the subject without
understanding that this issue COULD affect the bottom line? Under the
Federal Truth in Leasing Act, only those that lease equipment to a carrier,
must be paid under the same standard that they bill the freight charges to
the customer. If they bill for 500 miles to move a load, then the
contractual mileage rate on those 500 miles must be paid to the lessor. If
they are contractually bound to pay a percentage to a lessor, they must be
paid the applicable percentage specified in the lease of the gross amount,
unless there are specified and contractually agreed upon exceptions, such
as the standard 2% off-the-top amount that Landstar takes to compensate an
agent who books the freight.

You, as a company driver are not afforded the same protections. They (the
carrier) can bill by flat rate, mileage, or on an hourly basis, and the
carrier can pay you by whatever standard they choose. They (the carrier)
are perfectly free to amend the pay structure, rate, and calculation method
for your compensation at any time.
Post by tscottme
I suggest
drivers do as companies do, adapt to changing situations not greet
every change as the end of the industry.
I did not say that this would be the end of the industry. The country
cannot survive without us. What I have said, and still say, is that this
will take a bite out of every driver's ass at some point and time. Now...as
to how large a bite it will take, that remains to be seen.

Will all the little mistakes be held against us, and result in citations
being handed out like candy canes at a Christmas party? That will depend on
who has access to the recordings and under what conditions they are allowed
to cite a driver.

It wouldn't make any sense to have them in the truck if they were not going
to be used to catch wrongdoing that they (the Feds) presently feel is out
of control. Random and unfettered access would be the goal of such use of
these devices to enforce R&R's.

Presently, any LEO can obtain FMCSR enforcement with a minimal amount of
effort, and the local Govermnents are jumping on that lucrative bandwagon.
Cobb County, Georgia has every one of their officers certified, and they
routinely pull over trucks on the side of I-75 and I-285 just for the
purpose of looking at paperwork. I am not opposed to what they are doing,
because the truck accident rate is terrible in that area.

What happens though, if they take this step, and every driver stopped has
his entire week right there recorded down to the last minute, and there are
five minor infractions staring them in the face, and they (the LEO'S) are
allowed to cite for each and every one of them? Presently, Cobb County has
a fine structure that is ruthless. At let's say...$100 a violation, what
does that do to a driver's bottom line?
Post by tscottme
The comparisons I've made between the relevant segments of aviation
and trucking are right on the money and instructive if anyone cares to
read them. Most of those comparisons are dealing with the regulatory
and safety aspects that are most similar. You are doing what many
others have done in this industry, when shown that others with an
excellent safety atmosphere are going above and beyond what we are
expected to do, seek a way to ignore their experience so as to remain
in the good old ways.
You know something Scott? I really don't care how we compare to the
aviation industry. I don't think many other people in this industry care
either. My Brother-in-law can work two days away from home, and he pockets
an average of $5000 for his time and the use of his plane. I don't begin to
make that kind of jack, and I don't care how pay for newbies in the airline
industry compares to us either.

They operate above the earth. I operate on the ground. They primarily carry
people. I carry freight. If they crash, almost everyone dies. If I crash,
someone MAY die. The skills for a pilot are many. The skills for a truck
driver are few.

The "good old ways", as you coin it, are an expected amount of trust to do
my job and not be subjected to intrusive oversight. Judge ME based on my
present and past performance. Do not judge ME on what others do or have
done. Punish THOSE that do violate their trust, and drive them out of the
industry if necessary, and leave ME alone to continue to do the good job I
have always done.
Post by tscottme
I'd ask if you haven't piloted an aircraft how
is it you know there so little commonality between that and drving a
truck?
Oh...give me a break. I don't have to have piloted an aircraft to have at
least a basic amount of knowledge about the skills needed or the level of
their oversight that they are subjected to.
Post by tscottme
Anyone with any insight into this industry, and many people
outside this industry have every reason to look down their nose at us,
we give them lots of ammunition.
Speak for yourself. I have a 22 year record of safety with nothing more
than minor infractions for this entire period.
Post by tscottme
I certainly never volunteer I drive
a truck unless I know very well who will hear. I take pride in what I
do, the way I do it, but don't have any desire for people that don't
know me very well to think I'm like many of the other drivers I see.
Ah...so you are ashamed of the industry you work in? I'm not surprised. I,
on the other hand am not. I find that most people have a very high interest
in what I do. I do not run across people that look down on me, or who view
truckers in a bad light, except for the occasional story of one that
tailgated them or cut them off. My wife is terrified of being next to a
truck, but she doesn't have a thing against the drivers. The SIZE of the
vehicle is what intimidates her.
Post by tscottme
You may have been an excellent manager of drivers but the effort to
made to take out the incentive to break the rules sounds very foreign
to any company I've ever heard about.
You're right. It is. I went into that venture as an experienced driver, and
one that knew what the game was all about. I'm a person that studies things
from all sides, and I'm a bean counter as well. I wouldn't be any farther
away from a calculator than I would be from my cell phone.

It is why I beat my head against the wall at the ways that most carriers do
EVERYTHING but what would work, to save a buck. They trip over dollars to
pick up dimes.
Post by tscottme
Your preemptive hysteria abut recorders is no different than all those
on the radio that have heard about the thousands of 1mph speeding
ticket violators. There is nothing presently published that indicates
the Feds are going to violate drivers based on the tiny infractions
you've mentioned. There is nothing to indicate every moment of every
day will be searched for violations of the picky nature you
anticipate. Nothing in current practice indicates to me that the same
people that pick and choose which violations they pursue vigourously
and those that are noted before moving on will also become human
robots following EOBR records with no discretion. Yet one notice by
the Feds asking for comment on a sensible EOBR proposal and its the
end of the world and the industry.
Would you care to make a wager on just how close I am to what will be
specifically proposed?
Post by tscottme
I've already told you about my previous life and specifically
mentioned the great freedom I now enjoy because I will not depend on
keeping what I do private from authorities. You don't have to be
perfect to recognize the benefits of not breaking the rules. But if
someone is desperate for permission to avoid following the rules this
sort of point might be useful. Since the government allows us to
operate vehicles far in excess of what relatively unmonitored private
individuals can operate, reasonable monitoring is warranted.
Huh? We are allowed to "operate vehicles far in excess of what relatively
unmonitored private individuals can operate"? That's news to me.
Post by tscottme
A restaurant, a doctor, a hospital, an airline, a cop are all subject
to some small manner or lessened privacy precisely because they
operate in the public's interest and various mistakes by them are so
costly. I don't see why we should be exempt from similar reasonable
measures, when we have plenty that we've been hiding. If a chain of
restaurants had been systematically forging Health Dept inspections
for the last 30 years, I doubt just taking the bogus reports out of
the file would satisfy anyone. We'd demand a more stringent inspection
protocol.
Gotta go...but I'll be researching this further. You can count on it, and
let's see where the chips fall...

Hysterical? No. VERY concerned....you bet your ass I am.

~Tony~
Dave Smith
2004-11-25 15:07:10 UTC
Permalink
Post by TurboTrucker
No....and this is why; If the events of the Rodney King incident had been
witnessed by a person, rather than recorded on videotape, how much
attention would have been paid to it by anyone?
Good point. The airing of that tape, or airing of segments of the tape, made
it impossible not to deal with the event.
Post by TurboTrucker
People make complaints of abuse by an officer all the time, and as damaging
as the video recording appeared to be, the general public was only getting
half the story as it turned out. Those officers were tried based upon that
electronic evidence that was used by the media to convict those officers in
the court of public opinion.
Most cops that I know who have the video cams love them. There have been lots
of cases of people complaining about their treatment and a review of the video
exonerates the cop,
Post by TurboTrucker
The jurors in that case were the ONLY ones that eventually were presented
all the evidence and ultimately exonerated the officers involved. What was
the result of that? We witnessed on national television the aftermath.
The problem was that the tape was severely edited. A few hundred million people
saw King getting whacked repeatedly, but not the parts where we kept swinging
and trying to get up. A few minutes of video was edited down to about 15
seconds.
TurboTrucker
2004-11-25 19:12:26 UTC
Permalink
Post by Dave Smith
Most cops that I know who have the video cams love them. There have
been lots of cases of people complaining about their treatment and a
review of the video exonerates the cop,
My Pop is one of them. He was the first on the local force to get one. It's
saved his ass more times than I can count.

A side note:....I occasionally get my own private "Cops" episode
preview....
Post by Dave Smith
The problem was that the tape was severely edited. A few hundred
million people saw King getting whacked repeatedly, but not the parts
where we kept swinging and trying to get up. A few minutes of video
was edited down to about 15 seconds.
Yep....our wonderful "unbiased" media at work.

~Tony~
tscottme
2004-11-25 10:36:35 UTC
Permalink
BTW your brother-in-law can't be a "private pilot for McKee Foods."
"Private pilot" is the equavalent to passenger car driver. He can't use
that license and be employed as a pilot, anymore than you can use your
passenger car license to drive a truck. If he's earning a paycheck using
his pilot's license, he's a commercial pilot and his license will say
"commercial pilot" in addition to any type-rating for any jet aircraft and
class-rating if he flys single or twin-engine aircraft.
--
Scott

"Arafat remains in stable condition after dying in a Paris hospital."
TurboTrucker
2004-11-25 12:21:50 UTC
Permalink
Post by tscottme
BTW your brother-in-law can't be a "private pilot for McKee Foods."
"Private pilot" is the equavalent to passenger car driver. He can't
use that license and be employed as a pilot, anymore than you can use
your passenger car license to drive a truck. If he's earning a
paycheck using his pilot's license, he's a commercial pilot and his
license will say "commercial pilot" in addition to any type-rating for
any jet aircraft and class-rating if he flys single or twin-engine
aircraft.
Hhhmm....

Gee...I guess you may have me on that one...

Pardon me for not knowing EXACTLY how to phrase the description of his
position in the world of aviation.

What would he be if he owned the craft that he flies?

~Tony~
tscottme
2004-11-25 13:31:27 UTC
Permalink
I'm not jumping on you for not knowing exactly what is the precise technical
term to use about your relative. The point I am making is that aviation is
governed by rules similar and more strict to those that we operate under.
And the most comparable rules that we both operate under are the rules that
goverern the major airlines. We are both common carriers and subject to far
more scrutiny than an individual should expect. Because it takes relatively
little to change from being a passenger car driver to truck owner-operator I
think people are mistakenly applying privacy expectations due an individual
to a common carrier. To make the apples to appples comparison it's not
relevant that people in cars have more or fewer accidents than trucks. It's
not relevant if cars are subject to searches with a higher or lower
threshold than trucks It's more relevant, I argue exactly relevant, that
airline pilots have virtually no privacy right at work and their records are
available for inspection by proper authorities. What privacy rights they do
have with respect to recorders is a matter of union negotiation with the
company not the Feds. The Feds will get any data they want. The difference
in speed between their "truck" and our truck, or the difference in the
number of seats in their "truck" and our truck is not relevant for this
argument. In some ways we should expect more regulation since we get down
and operate in and amongst the public to a much greater degree than an
airline pilot. They operate in a more "sterile" safety environment since
very few members of the public have the slightest possibility of swerving in
front of their "truck" and slamming on the brakes.

Whether your relative owns the aircraft he operates is not key to the type
operation and the rules that govern that operation. He could own a 2-seat,
single-engine training Cessna and have it operate as a Part 121 aircraft.
Part 121 are the rules that apply to all airline type operators. He could
own a Boeing Business Jet, a corporate version of the B-737 airliner, and
possibly operate it under Part 91, which are the rules that would apply to
someone with a 2-seat, single-engine Cessna. It's what he does with the
aircraft and, for him, if he is paid to do it that determines what rules he
must live by. As for the aircraft there are too many things to list them.

There are 3 types of pilot's license, besides the flavors of student pilot
license. You can be a Private pilot, which means you pay for the flight
time or are permitted to equally split the cost of flight time with other
passengers. There are Commercial pilots, which is not necessarily qualified
to fly for any airline. They are one step above a pleasure pilot or the
doctor that flies himself between home and a vacation home. The Commercial
pilot can earn money teaching flight students, if he's appropriately
qualified, he can tow advertising banners, he can fly medical samples, or
checks, he can be hired to fly passengers in aircraft for which he is
qualified. However most airline pilots are the next type, they are Airline
Transport Pilots (ATP). The Captain in an airliner is an ATP, the
"co-pilot" or First Officer, depending on experience may or may not be an
ATP. It's confusing but what most "civilians" think of when they think
"commercial pilot" is actually not a Commercial Pilot but an ATP.
Technically speaking you can have only the 250 hours of experience, a
multi-engine rating, and a rating to fly the aircraft without outside visual
reference, "flying in the clouds" and work as an First Officer with a Delta
or United. However there have always been such a glut of pilots that the
real-life minimum qualification is closer to 1,500 hours of experience and
500 hours in multi-engine aircraft. That's a very high hurdle. Typically
that means 5-7 years of experience to get the 1500 hours and the hardest
part is getting the 500 hours, 1-3 years, in the multi-engine aircraft.
Almost nobody can get those 500 except they get hired by someone far down
the food chain to fly twins, and they survive the experience. In small
aircraft two engines is not necessarily safer than one engine, it can be
more dangerous.

Corporate aviation is a murky area. I'm not implying that it's risky or
shady just that many flight dept. operate under the same rules as the
airlines, many operate so as to stay within Part 91 due to the increased
flexibility it offers. Believe it or not, you can operate a Part 91 "puddle
jumper" in weather so bad that the best-equipped airliners are grounded. My
point was that if he actually is a pilot for his company, is paid as such,
and not a recreational pilot that happens to use his airplane for occasional
company use he's not a Private pilot but a Commercial pilot at a minimum.
If he is a Commercial pilot he is also required to get his medical exam
yearly. The ATP is medically examined every 6 months, if he's over 40 he
also receives an EKG exam, and must receive recurrent training every 6
months. How does that compare with us lowly truck drivers? We have
terrible health, die at work as often as any other profession, even the best
of us is likely to get a ticket in our career and we will likely never take
another road test with someone that could revoke out license. Relatively
speaking, we are getting a free ride compared to others.
--
Scott

"Arafat remains in stable condition after dying in a Paris hospital."
TurboTrucker
2004-11-25 14:03:44 UTC
Permalink
Post by tscottme
I'm not jumping on you for not knowing exactly what is the precise
technical term to use about your relative.
Okay....thank you for clearing that up,
Post by tscottme
The point I am making is
that aviation is governed by rules similar and more strict to those
that we operate under. And the most comparable rules that we both
operate under are the rules that goverern the major airlines. We are
both common carriers and subject to far more scrutiny than an
individual should expect.
I understand that. I don't understand the call for this much added scrutiny
of our daily lives. We agree that there are problems. We agree that
something needs to be done to correct them. Where we differ is to the
acceptable level of intrusion into our lives that should be allowed by
enforcement bodies, in order to make these corrections. I feel a line is
being crossed. You disagree.

I'm sick and tired of being punished for the actions of idiots. I can't see
it any other way. I'm one of the people that has made a two decade
investment in this industry, and have seen the worth of my working hour
eroded with the imposition of regulation after regulation, and my effort
worth less than it was when I began this venture. I know that I am not
alone in this.

What's even more amazing, is the fact that for all that has been done by
the government to make corrections in this industry that are supposed to be
positive...where's the evidence that any of it has worked at all?
Post by tscottme
Because it takes relatively little to
change from being a passenger car driver to truck owner-operator I
think people are mistakenly applying privacy expectations due an
individual to a common carrier.
I can't help but feel that you direct this comment to me, and I have never
alluded that as a driver of a commercial vehicle, I retain the same right
to privacy. I know that I don't.

I do think that as a citizen of the United States, and in comparison to all
other working people, I do have an expectation to be allowed to do my job
without the Federal Government looking over my shoulder each and every day,
poised to strike like a cobra, if I make so much as one wrong move. This is
particularly insulting, when I have an established record of safety and
respect for the general public.

~Tony~
truckinsp
2004-11-25 14:33:47 UTC
Permalink
Post by TurboTrucker
I'm sick and tired of being punished for the actions of idiots. I can't see
it any other way. I'm one of the people that has made a two decade
investment in this industry, and have seen the worth of my working hour
eroded with the imposition of regulation after regulation, and my effort
worth less than it was when I began this venture. I know that I am not
alone in this.
I agree with you and I believe the Feds agree with you on that, Tony, but
what do they do? What can they do? There are just too many companies and
drivers out there who are only interested in the dollar......

I agree, there should be a way to reward good companies and drivers and they
SHOULDN'T be held responsible for the losers......but I honestly don't know
what it is......
Post by TurboTrucker
What's even more amazing, is the fact that for all that has been done by
the government to make corrections in this industry that are supposed to be
positive...where's the evidence that any of it has worked at all?
There has been some progress.....crash rates involving large trucks are way
down from what they were in the 80's......but driver's quality of life
hasn't improved......there appears to be no way to convince companies that
the key to less regulation is to treat drivers better and to increase the
professionality of drivers......

I honestly believe that the Feds are being reactionary here and trying to
solve the problem from the wrong end. If the Feds would up the standards
for driver training and qualification thus making it harder to become a
driver, they would do much more for the industry than trying to put bandaids
on the problem......but that would be an end to "de-regulation" and no Fed
is going to go in that direction, given the political climate that exists in
this country.......and I am not talking about Republican or Democrat
here......
SloRide9430
2004-11-25 15:23:15 UTC
Permalink
Wow, a thread this long about TRUCKING.............. if this keeps up some
newbie is gonna think this is a TRUCKING newsgroup.......

Safe truckin' !

Slo
SloRide9430
2004-11-25 15:38:23 UTC
Permalink
From: "truckinsp"
there appears to be no way to convince companies that
the key to less regulation is to treat drivers better and to increase the
professionality of drivers......
Indeed, I believe they strive for the opposite. If enough drivers leave the
profession the industry will be able to petition for more H1-B visa
replacements. In my traffic lanes (southeastern US) most of the turban-wearing
drivers I encounter are H1-B visa entrants (Sikh, not Muslim, by the way).

http://uscis.gov/graphics/howdoi/h1b.htm

I don't mind the idea of EOBR, especially if it is accessed from outside the
truck or by transponder, but I'd like to see a change in the 14 hour rule. I'd
prefer limits based on calender day. It's hard for me to stay awake for 14
hours, I've been snoozing away the evening rush hours for too many years
now.....


Safe truckin' !

Slo
Richard
2004-11-25 16:34:37 UTC
Permalink
Post by SloRide9430
From: "truckinsp"
there appears to be no way to convince companies that
the key to less regulation is to treat drivers better and to increase the
professionality of drivers......
Indeed, I believe they strive for the opposite. If enough drivers leave
the profession the industry will be able to petition for more H1-B visa
replacements. In my traffic lanes (southeastern US) most of the
turban-wearing drivers I encounter are H1-B visa entrants (Sikh, not
Muslim, by the way).
http://uscis.gov/graphics/howdoi/h1b.htm
I don't mind the idea of EOBR, especially if it is accessed from outside
the truck or by transponder, but I'd like to see a change in the 14 hour
rule. I'd prefer limits based on calender day. It's hard for me to stay
awake for 14 hours, I've been snoozing away the evening rush hours for
too many years now.....
That's precisely why the 14 hour rule was amended so that a driver could get
a rest in those hours and the clock stopped when he does.
The way it was written originally, it penalized a driver who split 5/5
because the third set put him over the 14 hours.
What needs to be done is to KISS it.
Keep it simple, stupid.
12 hours of driving per day, 16 hours of work per day.
No other clocks needed.
TurboTrucker
2004-11-25 19:05:09 UTC
Permalink
Post by truckinsp
I agree with you and I believe the Feds agree with you on that, Tony,
but what do they do? What can they do? There are just too many
companies and drivers out there who are only interested in the
dollar......
Agreed. I wish I had the answers. When they began tracking safety numbers,
and then targeting carriers based upon those numbers, I saw that as a
sensible tactic. Honestly, I think more of the same is needed. But then,
states are strapped for budgeting to increase enforcement where it is
needed.

Just like homeland security, where is the sense in passing legislation to
keep us safe, if there is no money dispersed to provide the means to
enforce the laws put in place? If they are not willing to fund their end of
things, then why in hell should I be made to spend 3 to 5 grand that could
be put into my retirement portfolio, to do my damn job?
Post by truckinsp
I agree, there should be a way to reward good companies and drivers
and they SHOULDN'T be held responsible for the losers......but I
honestly don't know what it is......
I'm at a loss at this point....
Post by truckinsp
There has been some progress.....crash rates involving large trucks
are way down from what they were in the 80's......but driver's quality
of life hasn't improved......there appears to be no way to convince
companies that the key to less regulation is to treat drivers better
and to increase the professionality of drivers......
You're right, and quite honestly, I fail to understand how some of these
people get hired, and it really makes me cringe sometimes to think that
people in charge of hiring a person to take charge of upwards of $200,000
of equipment and freight can be so careless in that kind of a decision.

I don't know how they continue to survive. I knew that I did my level best
to make careful hiring decisions, yet I was constantly worried. It damn
near drove me nuts, because I knew that one bad driver could cause me more
grief than a tornado taking my home.

I don't know how some of these people sleep.....ever.
Post by truckinsp
I honestly believe that the Feds are being reactionary here and trying
to solve the problem from the wrong end. If the Feds would up the
standards for driver training and qualification thus making it harder
to become a driver, they would do much more for the industry than
trying to put bandaids on the problem......
It ought to be even harder to start up business as a carrier. A little
education in that arena wouldn't hurt either. Hard line enforcement should
be directed at the carrier, and in my personal opinion, perhaps after given
three strikes to get it right. I'm heartened that you understand that this
is where the problem begins. The drivers have had to take the blame for far
too long.
Post by truckinsp
but that would be an end to
"de-regulation" and no Fed is going to go in that direction, given the
political climate that exists in this country.......and I am not
talking about Republican or Democrat here......
Maybe we need to be regulated again. the decline began in 1980, when we
were de-regulated. That fact is not in dispute anywhere.

~Tony~
tscottme
2004-11-25 15:12:51 UTC
Permalink
The only difference between a paper logbook and a recorder is the accuracy
of the recorder within technical limits. If you run legally how will having
a recorder punish you? This industry has pretended not to notice that most
drivers learn how to lie to their logbook before they learn how to park and
this is part of the reason why paper logs aren't getting the job done. This
is why I don't just let the bad practices of other drivers go when I see
them. Because if enough bad drivers do bad things often enough then we will
all be treated as if we are bad drivers. That means we help the industry by
driving not just well enough to avoid a ticket, but exactly as we would if
the boss and the cops were always watching what we do, and when we stop
ignoring the drivers that only shape up if they get a bear report.

We can't live by "you drive your truck and he'll drive his truck" all year
and then "all work together" when the Feds come knocking. This is probably
the biggest difference between this industry and the one I was in before.
With few exceptions, everyone from the lowest worker bee to the senior man
thought it his duty to learn the best practices, teach the newbie, and
monitor his colleague. There are a wide range of ways to do all that, but
it was the expected way of working that you would always be on the lookout
for the other guy, whether that was because he slipped up or becasue he was
careless. The previous industry pioneered this way of working and today
it's called "crew resource management." Everyone is required to contribute,
not defer to the senior man or look the other way. Objections must be
raised and the problem solved, not just assume there's nothing to be done or
mind your own business. The airlines have the stunning safety reputation
they do, not because they are highly regulated but because they police
themselves even more strictly than the law requires. What percentage of
trucking companies are highly selective and far stricter than the law
requires?

Deregulation isn't about making employees happy, it's always been about
giving consumers more choices and more competitive prices. It's worked
remarkably well. More people consume trucking services than work in
trucking so the consumer impact is most important. When my last company was
bought up it was a big trauma, but life is about change and free enterprise
is about not keeping employees comfortable but making consumers happy.
Better to learn how to change than to expect to find a place to avoid
change.

If you agree with me that trucking is a common carriage business you
wouldn't have an expectation to do you job without significant government
oversight. If you want to run a common extension cord across 40 acres to
light your own barn, no problem if you have a fire extinguixher. If you
want to sell electricity to your neighbors by running an common extension
cord across 40 acres, big problem. All EOBRs mean is that what you do is
recorded not a driver's best artistic creation put on paper.

You do agree that DOT could follow you around and look at your logbook
anytime they wanted, right now, not that you would like them doing it? I
don't see any real difference between what they could do now, and what that
can do more easily later, especially for people already in compliance.
--
Scott

"Arafat remains in stable condition after dying in a Paris hospital."
truckinsp
2004-11-24 14:15:32 UTC
Permalink
Post by TurboTrucker
Okay...you and I know that there are people out there that run constantly
in violation, and there are carriers that use varying amounts of pressure
to nudge drivers to run non-compliant, and they absolutely need to be
brought under control, but this is not the way to do it.
OK.....what do you have mind? The Feds have been trying for years to find
a better way to monitor hours.......

Tony, we know you are a good driver and that you do your company proud,
however, your company suffers because you don't violate the HOS.....Scott's
right, do you think shippers care what's going on in your truck while you
are delivering the load? They just want it delivered "on-time" and as
cheaply as possible......If a company says they can deliver a load across
the country in two days and charge them less than other companies will, do
you think the shipper thinks about whether the driver's going to be tired or
not????
TurboTrucker
2004-11-24 19:31:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by truckinsp
OK.....what do you have mind? The Feds have been trying for years to
find a better way to monitor hours.......
As I stated in another post....take away the incentive to violate, and the
problem solves itself.

1) Structure fines for violation so excessive and absolute upon both
carriers and driver, that the risk does not outweigh the punishment. If
safety is a primary factor, then putting people into bankruptcy or out of
business should not be a factor of concern. They will have done it to
themselves.

2) Step up enforcement at the carrier level, with strict adherance to
policies that identify carriers publicly when they are found to be in
violation. Fines should not be negotiable as they are today.

3) Retract the exemptions for drivers from the FLSA and impose compensation
calculations that cap pay, based on the maximum hours that a driver would
be able to run. (I realize that this is a long shot and could still be
side-stepped).

4) Create a set of rules that will allow a driver to stay legal. We have a
golden opportunity to re-amend the rules to conform to differing segments
of the industry. They work very well for line haul operations, but OTR
drivers are always challenged to meet the rules as they have been written
for all of these years.

I still think that people in Washington think that trucking is all line-
haul. They don't have a clue.

For example: A die hard set of rules as they are now, lend to violations. A
sensible solution would be to limit hours available for driving or working,
but allow the driver to meet them within a 24 hour period, rather than a 14
or 15 hour period.

If they offer a SENSIBLE set of HOS rules, combined with the EOBR's, then I
will gladly stand behind it.
Post by truckinsp
Tony, we know you are a good driver and that you do your company
proud, however, your company suffers because you don't violate the
HOS.....
They might in one respect, but they have adopted a policy of quality over
quantity, and they truly do strive for 100% compliance. They know that they
have drivers that violate the rules for customer service or for themselves,
but the safety dept. checks our logs very closely, and they have no
hesitation in firing a driver or contractor who is nailed on the road or in
a log audit. Next month, they are instituting an even stricter set of
guidelines, and they know that the pink slips will increase. Our safety
numbers have slipped in the past few months, and they are going to do
whatever they must to get them back down.
Post by truckinsp
Scott's right, do you think shippers care what's going on in
your truck while you are delivering the load? They just want it
delivered "on-time" and as cheaply as possible......If a company says
they can deliver a load across the country in two days and charge them
less than other companies will, do you think the shipper thinks about
whether the driver's going to be tired or not????
Generally, that's true, but I can attest to a tide change in this regard.
Service is important these days, and there are far too many carriers out
here that have went through the "bargain basement" style of shipping
freight. Without naming names, there are so many carriers out there that
will do it cheap, but not get it there on time, or in one piece.

I had a conversation with the VP of my carrier a few weeks ago, and in that
conversation, he told me that he was in a very good position these days. We
have a 98% on time record of service, and this has allowed him to be very
picky with freight, and take only that which is profitable and driver
friendly. This has not resulted from pushing drivers to run hard. This is
due to their immense PLANNING, where they are always thinking ahead, and
having back-up plans if things go wrong.

We discussed a problem shipper I had run across, and he told me they were
dumping them as we speaked. Trailers were being pulled out, and they were
through with them. He then dropped a bomb shell on me. He said that for
every trailer he had, he had shippers willing to put ten loads on each one
of them. We apparently are well known for service and the quality of our
drivers. They are very picky about whom they hire, for the most part.

Something they are doing is right, because they broke ground last week on a
multi-million dollar terminal in Kansas City, because they have outgrown
the one that they have been in for only nine years.

I also know from personal experience when I was totally on my own, that
service does sell. I practiced it, and I planned for it constantly.

However, as I also found out, it takes alot out of a person to be in that
mode on a constant basis, which is why I am happy to be where I am today.
Downsizing is not always a bad thing....

~Tony~
Dave Smith
2004-11-24 20:26:07 UTC
Permalink
Post by TurboTrucker
As I stated in another post....take away the incentive to violate, and the
problem solves itself.
1) Structure fines for violation so excessive and absolute upon both
carriers and driver, that the risk does not outweigh the punishment. If
safety is a primary factor, then putting people into bankruptcy or out of
business should not be a factor of concern. They will have done it to
themselves.
That worked for us with equipment defects. I have used the example of brake
adjustment fines here several times. Putting them OOS and making them go to
the expense and inconvenience of road service didn't work. $90 fines didn't
work, nor did $185, or adding a surcharge making it $235. When the fines were
$500 we started to see a difference.
Post by TurboTrucker
2) Step up enforcement at the carrier level, with strict adherance to
policies that identify carriers publicly when they are found to be in
violation. Fines should not be negotiable as they are today.
That has some merit to it, but enforcement has been stepped up. However, all
governments are squeezed for money and politics come into play. Road safety
became a major political issue here more than a decade ago, and while other
government departments were being chopped, our program expanded. Then we had a
change of government last year. Education and health care were the major
concerns. Our budget got chopped big time. I got out while the getting was
good.
Post by TurboTrucker
4) Create a set of rules that will allow a driver to stay legal. We have a
golden opportunity to re-amend the rules to conform to differing segments
of the industry. They work very well for line haul operations, but OTR
drivers are always challenged to meet the rules as they have been written
for all of these years.
Good luck. You are a nation of 50 states, all of which have their own interests
in mind, and their interests vary. It is hard enough to get all of those
jurisdictions online, but then you have thousands of trucking companies, and
many thousands of businesses to deal with, all with their own issues and
agendas.
Post by TurboTrucker
I still think that people in Washington think that trucking is all line-
haul. They don't have a clue.
They do have a clue. They have all sorts of statistics at hand, and a whole lot
of lobbyists to deal with.
Post by TurboTrucker
For example: A die hard set of rules as they are now, lend to violations. A
sensible solution would be to limit hours available for driving or working,
but allow the driver to meet them within a 24 hour period, rather than a 14
or 15 hour period.
Then you are back to the old system where drivers never get a chance to get a
decent sleep and their circadian rhythms are thrown out of whack.
Post by TurboTrucker
They might in one respect, but they have adopted a policy of quality over
quantity, and they truly do strive for 100% compliance. They know that they
have drivers that violate the rules for customer service or for themselves,
but the safety dept. checks our logs very closely, and they have no
hesitation in firing a driver or contractor who is nailed on the road or in
a log audit. Next month, they are instituting an even stricter set of
guidelines, and they know that the pink slips will increase.
There is a crucial statement right there, that they come down hard on them when
they get caught on the road or in an audit. The problem is that the companies
should be auditing their drivers' records themselves, identifying problems and
deal with them at that time rather than waiting until enforcement agencies
catch them.
Post by TurboTrucker
Our safety
numbers have slipped in the past few months, and they are going to do
whatever they must to get them back down.
That sounds like something Bush would say :-)
Post by TurboTrucker
I had a conversation with the VP of my carrier a few weeks ago, and in that
conversation, he told me that he was in a very good position these days. We
have a 98% on time record of service, and this has allowed him to be very
picky with freight, and take only that which is profitable and driver
friendly. This has not resulted from pushing drivers to run hard. This is
due to their immense PLANNING, where they are always thinking ahead, and
having back-up plans if things go wrong.
All other businesses have to plan. That is one of the major problems with a lot
of trucking companies, especially the smaller guys. I encountered lots of guys
over the years who were nice guys, who were good with trucks and worked hard,
but they tended to be reactive rather than proactive. They lacked the ability
to plan and organize.
TurboTrucker
2004-11-25 02:57:47 UTC
Permalink
Post by Dave Smith
That worked for us with equipment defects. I have used the example of
brake adjustment fines here several times. Putting them OOS and
making them go to the expense and inconvenience of road service didn't
work. $90 fines didn't work, nor did $185, or adding a surcharge
making it $235. When the fines were $500 we started to see a
difference.
At $500.00 a pop, it would most certainly make me double check mine before
crossing the border.

If a driver had any chance at all that he would be caught in violation and
fined $1000.00 with no chance of reducing the fine, my bet is that he
wouldn't take that chance.

If a carrier had any chance of being caught side stepping the regs, and was
going to face a $10,000 per incident fine for falsified logs that they did
not catch, my bet is that they would immediately get their act together as
well.
Post by Dave Smith
That has some merit to it, but enforcement has been stepped up.
The figure I read the other day, stated that in the U.S., only 5% of all
registered carriers face compliance audits per year. That's a pitifully low
figure, considering the safety numbers out there that are in dire need of
improvement.
Post by Dave Smith
However, all governments are squeezed for money and politics come into
play. Road safety became a major political issue here more than a
decade ago, and while other government departments were being chopped,
our program expanded. Then we had a change of government last year.
Education and health care were the major concerns. Our budget got
chopped big time. I got out while the getting was good.
If my memory serves me correctly, under the Clinton Administration, the
FMCSA budget was increased, and has been cut under the Bush Adminstration.
I couldn't begin to quote the figures, but I'm sure that this is something
that I have read. Much of what was in place prior to 9/11 for many
departments has been skimmed for the war and homeland security.
Post by Dave Smith
Then you are back to the old system where drivers never get a chance
to get a decent sleep and their circadian rhythms are thrown out of
whack.
Personally, I think that circadian rhythm is a load of crap. I for one have
NEVER been a person that can sleep on a regular basis for eight or more
hours at a time. For the most part, I am a night person. I sleep better
during the day, and have always as a driver, slept in two periods and drove
in two periods. I cover the same ground and am very alert doing this.

Personally, if I am forced to drive a stretch of time that will be around
10 hours, and then rest for 8-10 hours, then I'm not going to make it. It's
just not something that has ever worked for me. I can do it occasionally,
but on a daily basis....no way.
Post by Dave Smith
There is a crucial statement right there, that they come down hard on
them when they get caught on the road or in an audit. The problem is
that the companies should be auditing their drivers' records
themselves, identifying problems and deal with them at that time
rather than waiting until enforcement agencies catch them.
You're right, and I did fail to mention that they do audit our logs, and
they will fire drivers based upon those internal audits as well. We are
written up for any month where we are not over 90% correct in our entries,
which includes totalling hours, signing the log, speeding, etc....basically
anything that a field agent would note.
Post by Dave Smith
That sounds like something Bush would say :-)
Ugh....you're right. I'm still trying to forget the early part of this
month. I truly haven't even been able to watch the news networks....

~Tony~
Dave Smith
2004-11-25 04:42:42 UTC
Permalink
Post by TurboTrucker
At $500.00 a pop, it would most certainly make me double check mine before
crossing the border.
That is for each incident, not each brake.
Post by TurboTrucker
If a driver had any chance at all that he would be caught in violation and
fined $1000.00 with no chance of reducing the fine, my bet is that he
wouldn't take that chance.
If a carrier had any chance of being caught side stepping the regs, and was
going to face a $10,000 per incident fine for falsified logs that they did
not catch, my bet is that they would immediately get their act together as
well.
Let's be realistic. It's a traffic offence. Fines for criminal law violations
are often less that our tickets are now, and I have difficulty with criminal
offences being penalized less than traffic offences. Bear in mind that some
really severe traffic offences can be criminal charges.
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by Dave Smith
That has some merit to it, but enforcement has been stepped up.
The figure I read the other day, stated that in the U.S., only 5% of all
registered carriers face compliance audits per year. That's a pitifully low
figure, considering the safety numbers out there that are in dire need of
improvement.
Don't get me going on audits. Some audits are generated when the operators hit
a certain threshold with their operating records. A lot of ours were generated
randomly. A lot of them were at the request of the companies. A company would
call in a consultant, clean up their act for a while and request an audit in
order to improve their safety rating. Even if they had done badly on previous
audits they could get one done again. Meanwhile, the field staff was running
into really bad operators and could not get one done on those guys.
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by Dave Smith
However, all governments are squeezed for money and politics come into
play. Road safety became a major political issue here more than a
decade ago, and while other government departments were being chopped,
our program expanded. Then we had a change of government last year.
Education and health care were the major concerns. Our budget got
chopped big time. I got out while the getting was good.
If my memory serves me correctly, under the Clinton Administration, the
FMCSA budget was increased, and has been cut under the Bush Adminstration.
I couldn't begin to quote the figures, but I'm sure that this is something
that I have read. Much of what was in place prior to 9/11 for many
departments has been skimmed for the war and homeland security.
I have to ask.... What do you think would happen if Haliburton got into the for
hire enforcement business?
:-)
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by Dave Smith
Then you are back to the old system where drivers never get a chance
to get a decent sleep and their circadian rhythms are thrown out of
whack.
Personally, I think that circadian rhythm is a load of crap. I for one have
NEVER been a person that can sleep on a regular basis for eight or more
hours at a time. For the most part, I am a night person. I sleep better
during the day, and have always as a driver, slept in two periods and drove
in two periods. I cover the same ground and am very alert doing this.
In what way do you consider it to be a load of crap. That is the sort of stuff
that I studied quite extensively in university, including courses on
physiological psychology and the physiology of sleep. I also worked shifts for
a number of years. I certainly had my share of having my circadian rhythm
messed messed up.
Post by TurboTrucker
Personally, if I am forced to drive a stretch of time that will be around
10 hours, and then rest for 8-10 hours, then I'm not going to make it. It's
just not something that has ever worked for me. I can do it occasionally,
but on a daily basis....no way.
When I was driving, my worst time was about 10 minutes after taking off after a
lunch break. I am serious. I would get back into the truck and within 10
minutes I could hardly keep my eyes open.
TurboTrucker
2004-11-25 07:02:07 UTC
Permalink
Post by Dave Smith
I have to ask.... What do you think would happen if Haliburton got
into the for hire enforcement business?
:-)
Aw..geez....I'd move to Canada for sure....
Post by Dave Smith
In what way do you consider it to be a load of crap.
As it pertains to me....I did not mean to say that there is no truth to it
for normal people. I'm far from normal.
Post by Dave Smith
I certainly had my share of having my circadian rhythm messed messed up.
Try trucking for 22 years....which might explain why I work better
splitting my sleep. I've done it for years.
Post by Dave Smith
When I was driving, my worst time was about 10 minutes after taking
off after a lunch break. I am serious. I would get back into the truck
and within 10 minutes I could hardly keep my eyes open.
Do you know what causes that? Blood sugar levels spiking. It's a symptom of
early onset of diabetes.

~Tony~
Dave Smith
2004-11-25 14:58:12 UTC
Permalink
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by Dave Smith
I certainly had my share of having my circadian rhythm messed messed up.
Try trucking for 22 years....which might explain why I work better
splitting my sleep. I've done it for years.
So then you are admitting that it took some getting used to?
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by Dave Smith
When I was driving, my worst time was about 10 minutes after taking
off after a lunch break. I am serious. I would get back into the truck
and within 10 minutes I could hardly keep my eyes open.
Do you know what causes that? Blood sugar levels spiking. It's a symptom of
early onset of diabetes.
Not so sure about that. It was more than 20 years ago and still no diabetes,
thought there is a family factor. It was just 10 minutes after eating. It was
10 minutes after starting to drive. When I made trips into our head office new
equipment section I played cards with the guys who worked there. We had a one
hour lunch break, time to eat and play a few games of cards. Then I would load
up whatever I was taking back to our yard, chain it down, hit the road, and
invariably, within 10 minutes of driving I was having trouble keeping my eyes
open.
SLW TRK
2004-11-26 21:13:42 UTC
Permalink
Tony wrote;
Post by tscottme
<snip>
Personally, if I am forced to drive a stretch of
time that will be around 10 hours, and then rest
for 8-10 hours, then I'm not going to make it. It's
just not something that has ever worked for me.
I can do it occasionally, but on a daily
basis....no way.
EOBR's wont change your ability to use split
sleeper.
Your h.o.s. aren't going to change, just how they are recorded.

__
Nick
TurboTrucker
2004-11-26 21:38:43 UTC
Permalink
Post by SLW TRK
EOBR's wont change your ability to use split
sleeper.
As I understand it, that is also one of the targets of the safety groups.
They are going after eliminating split sleeper periods for solo drivers.
Post by SLW TRK
Your h.o.s. aren't going to change, just how they are recorded.
Actually, the HOS as we know it ARE going to change...again. The new rules
were thrown out and we are operating under them temporarily until they are
remastered to satisfy Public Citizen, CRASH, and PATT. It will be several
months before we find out just how they will change, but I will guarantee
that when they are done this time, it will get the attention of every
driver this time around.

~Tony~
tscottme
2004-11-28 01:31:10 UTC
Permalink
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by SLW TRK
EOBR's wont change your ability to use split
sleeper.
As I understand it, that is also one of the targets of the safety groups.
They are going after eliminating split sleeper periods for solo drivers.
Post by SLW TRK
Your h.o.s. aren't going to change, just how they are recorded.
Actually, the HOS as we know it ARE going to change...again. The new rules
were thrown out and we are operating under them temporarily until they are
remastered to satisfy Public Citizen, CRASH, and PATT. It will be several
months before we find out just how they will change, but I will guarantee
that when they are done this time, it will get the attention of every
driver this time around.
~Tony~
And I gaurantee you that no matter what change is made to the HOS, the level
of panic and grand announcements about how they mark the death of this
industry will be exactly the same as if the HOS were reduced to 1 on and 23
off.
--
Scott

"Arafat remains in stable condition after dying in a Paris hospital."
TurboTrucker
2004-11-28 04:48:38 UTC
Permalink
Post by tscottme
And I gaurantee you that no matter what change is made to the HOS, the
level of panic and grand announcements about how they mark the death
of this industry will be exactly the same as if the HOS were reduced
to 1 on and 23 off.
I don't know about "killing" the industry, but unless they resist the
safety groups influence, it will not be a welcome change.

~Tony~
tscottme
2004-11-25 00:23:04 UTC
Permalink
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by truckinsp
OK.....what do you have mind? The Feds have been trying for years to
find a better way to monitor hours.......
As I stated in another post....take away the incentive to violate, and the
problem solves itself.
1) Structure fines for violation so excessive and absolute upon both
carriers and driver, that the risk does not outweigh the punishment. If
safety is a primary factor, then putting people into bankruptcy or out of
business should not be a factor of concern. They will have done it to
themselves.
2) Step up enforcement at the carrier level, with strict adherance to
policies that identify carriers publicly when they are found to be in
violation. Fines should not be negotiable as they are today.
3) Retract the exemptions for drivers from the FLSA and impose
compensation
Post by TurboTrucker
calculations that cap pay, based on the maximum hours that a driver would
be able to run. (I realize that this is a long shot and could still be
side-stepped).
4) Create a set of rules that will allow a driver to stay legal. We have a
golden opportunity to re-amend the rules to conform to differing segments
of the industry. They work very well for line haul operations, but OTR
drivers are always challenged to meet the rules as they have been written
for all of these years.
I think you will find that getting the government involved in daily
business/driver operations enough to catch HOS violations without EOBRs will
be far more intrusive than using EOBRs.

The HOS are already in place, those are what need to be enforced. How the
Feds are going to monitor pressure a boss puts on an employee is a bit
difficult to understand.
--
Scott

"Arafat remains in stable condition after dying in a Paris hospital."
TurboTrucker
2004-11-25 03:15:32 UTC
Permalink
Post by tscottme
I think you will find that getting the government involved in daily
business/driver operations enough to catch HOS violations without
EOBRs will be far more intrusive than using EOBRs.
But we're already dealing with that now. Each of us knows that we can get
that little yellow arrow to go around back, for a closer look at
everything. I'm accustomed to that, and am comfortable with the way that
these checks are done. The effort is concentrated on those carriers that
have the bad numbers.

Something that I have noticed involves the Pre-Pass system. I have it, and
my carrier has a pretty good ISS-2 score, so we are routinely passed. I
also note some rather high profile carriers that have some horrible scores
that are also reoutinely passed, and I'm speaking of those that are in the
90's.

It's far from me to be making decisions in this arena, but I honestly don't
understand why any carrier that has Iss-2's above the 75 mark, should be
allowed to pass a scale. Then again, there's probably a very good reason
for this. They aren't checking anything but weight most of the time.

Maybe I shouldn't even worry. It isn't likely that they will ramp up the
number of people to check the boxes....because I don't see where the
additional enforcement money is going to come from.
Post by tscottme
The HOS are already in place, those are what need to be enforced. How
the Feds are going to monitor pressure a boss puts on an employee is a
bit difficult to understand.
And from my perspective, I haven't responded to that kind of pressure for
many years now. I understand that it happens, and know that people that do
respond to it are not like I am, and have varying reasons for allowing it
to happen, but I don't think that the EOBR's are going to eliminate the
problem either.

Gunslinger has hit on something. Nothing is tamper proof.

~Tony~
Chuck U. Farley
2004-11-24 07:14:39 UTC
Permalink
Chuck U. Farley intoned thusly:
Ya know, scott, you display an intense interest in, and knowledge of,
aviation, and rightly so, IIRC, you're an airframe mechanic, or trained to
be, right?
While I'm not in complete disagreement with you on your perceptions of
truckers/trucking, I gotta wonder, why do you stay in the field? Sounds
like you'd be much better suited to an aviation career. I had to laugh at
your last couple of paragraphs, man, where do you live where your stops are
a "bubbling sewer with every driver attempting to park 19 deep on the end
of the last fuel pump."? Now, every truckstop has it's share of disgusting
weirdos, not all of them drivers, BTW, but I see a hell of a lot of
perfectly presentable guys and gals out there, too, at least out west.
You do a disservice to the many competent pros out there to characterize so
sweepingly.
Maybe you oughtta move on outta there, get yourself to a better
neighborhood.

As for the subject at hand, I'm in favor of some kind of EOBR, but limited
to the relevant data to determine factors in the event of a crash. A camera
in every truck? CVR? I don't think anybody really needs to see that much
detail of a driver's life. Pilots and train engineers stay in HOTELS at the
end of their day, not their respective vehicles.
Lastly, you hope in vain that EOBRs will bring the companies into
compliance with HOS, unless enforcement goes to them. Doncha know they'll
just find another way to finagle things, then blame the driver for it
anyway?
.
"What the f*** was that?" - Mayor of Hiroshima
Post by tscottme
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by tscottme
I think recorders are a good idea. The relevant comparison isn't
between a truck driver or truck and a passenger car, but commercial
aircraft and commercial road vehicles. Commercial aircraft, above a
minimum size, have been subject to these types of recorders for years.
Locomotives are also subject to event recorders.
Event recorders are fine and if they were going to be used in a similar
manner as they have been applied to other modes of transportation, then I
would not have objection to them, and correct me if I am wrong... but
aren't these devices used or scrutinized post incident ONLY in rail and
air?
An airplane does not land at an airport and have an FAA agent rush out on
the tarmac to plug into it to determine if the pilot made any in-flight
errors, or similarly when a train pulls into a terminal yard. They are
used
Post by TurboTrucker
to determine fault or blame when something goes wrong and AFTER something
happens that precipitates such scrutiny.
Drug-testing didn't start with trucking, it started well before that. In
fact there were high school athletes taking school district drug screens
years before workers under DOT regs were tapped for that privilege.
Without EOBRs too many people in and out of the industry are able to pretend
the HOS are being complied with. Customers are able to ignore the HOS
impact of their long delays, trucking companies and dispatchers are able to
say "we follow the HOS sctrictly", wink, wink, and then punish you for doing
exactly that.
The way trucks and their drivers operate on public roads is a matter of
public safety and public concern. The public has a right to expect the laws
affecting our industry will be enforced.
Cockpit Voice Recorders (CVR) and Flight Data Recorders (FDR) are routinely
used for non-accident related activities. For example, it's quite normal
for the FDR to be reviewed after some aircraft upset, hard landing, bad
turbulence, engine anomoly, etc. The limitation on the uses of FDR and CVR
are usually the matter of union contract and not FAA regulation. One
example in the news recently is another turbulence encounter involving an
Airbus A300. Shortly after Sept 11, 2001 an Airbus A300 crashed outside of
NYC. It appears that during a wake turbulence encounter shortly after
takeoff one crewmember applied the rudder too abruptly and the vertical part
of the tail broke off leading to a crash. This year another A300 was
invloved in something similar and the FDR was reviewed to discover that the
aircraft was not in-fact subject to excessive side-loads. When engines have
problems, or the aircraft lands too hard, the FDR is routinely examined.
CVRs are used less frequently simply because they are usually over-written
before they can be examined. CVRs are only required to record the last 30
minutes of audio. NASA and the aircraft industry make routine use of FDR
data.
Pilot's are subject to random or specific FAA exam, including the example
you cited of an FAA agent rushing out to examine either the pilot's records
or his activity. It's called a "ramp check". Rather than an FAA Inspector
plugging in is data logger, he will simply ask the airline to turn over FDR
data to their local designated FAA officer.
We could use EOBR surveillance to cut back on the many hours of wasted time
and some of the other unscrupulous practices drivers are presented with so
that the "suits" can pretend everyone is following the HOS.
It's these types of issues we could use to improve our working conditions,
but we have to get involved and get them implemented in such a way to help
us, not just give more false impressions.
The Airline Pilot's Association is in the forefront of research and lobbying
to make working conditions better in their industry. ALPA represents the
unionized pilots, not the airlines or the aircraft manufacturers. Everytime
ALPA speaks they have clean professionals represent their members in a sane
and cautious manner. They present specific improvements and explain the
benefits. In trucking we just seek to be able to wear ripped sweatpants and
pour piss in the parking lot while blaring our hillbilly slang across a 1000
watt kicker with roger-beep, echo, and reverb. I say we're lucky we aren't
forced to drive under police escort. If our problems were mostly the fault
of cars and bad bosses, wouldn't the truck stop be the nicest part of our
day. They are boss-free, cars are segregated from trucks, and the rest of
the traffic are fellow CDL drivers. Instead, the truck stop is a bubbling
sewer with every driver attempting to park 19 deep on the end of the last
fuel pump.
tscottme
2004-11-24 13:35:34 UTC
Permalink
I was trained as a pilot, switched to A&P mechanic, and worked as an A&P
before driving. I left because the pay was so lousy. In fact, I doubled my
pay by quitting aviation and driving a truck as a rookie. At the end of one
year driving I had more cash in the bank than I had earned my last year as
an A&P.

I switched from flying to twisting wrenches because the pay for pilots was
even worse than mechanics and the demand for new mechanics was much higher.
When I stopped flying you often could get a flying job only by paying a
training fee. The situation that did it for me was seeing a really shitty
job, which paid $18K, requiring a $10K training fee. I was several years
away from having even the modest requirements for that sorry job and I
hadn't seen $10k in one spot except in a movie. If after your application
was accepted, and you paid the $10K, and if you successfully passed the
evaluation period, they *might* offer you a job, no guarantees. The bottom
2/3 of the pilot career field is paying wages no better, often much worse,
than trucking. What most civilians see are the stories about the Delta
Captain that made $200K last year and only works 2 weeks per month. Most
civilians don't realize that his example includes 10-15 years of working for
$1,000-$2,000 per month and being away from home, being furloughed 2 or 3
times for a year or more at a time, and moving from one very expensive city
to another very expensive city at the drop of a hat.

Even during WWII when the US needed I don't know how many thousands of
pilots, there were far more volunteers than needed. Flying is a bit like
being a movie star or professional athlete, for every glamour job there are
hundreds or thousands of applicants and only the applicant willing to
sacrifice more than all the others is even in a position to be turned down.

You know of a truck stop somewhere that doesn't smell like a sewer after a
brief rain?
--
Scott

"Arafat remains in stable condition after dying in a Paris hospital."
Post by Chuck U. Farley
Ya know, scott, you display an intense interest in, and knowledge of,
aviation, and rightly so, IIRC, you're an airframe mechanic, or trained to
be, right?
While I'm not in complete disagreement with you on your perceptions of
truckers/trucking, I gotta wonder, why do you stay in the field? Sounds
like you'd be much better suited to an aviation career. I had to laugh at
your last couple of paragraphs, man, where do you live where your stops are
a "bubbling sewer with every driver attempting to park 19 deep on the end
of the last fuel pump."? Now, every truckstop has it's share of disgusting
weirdos, not all of them drivers, BTW, but I see a hell of a lot of
perfectly presentable guys and gals out there, too, at least out west.
You do a disservice to the many competent pros out there to characterize so
sweepingly.
Maybe you oughtta move on outta there, get yourself to a better
neighborhood.
As for the subject at hand, I'm in favor of some kind of EOBR, but limited
to the relevant data to determine factors in the event of a crash. A camera
in every truck? CVR? I don't think anybody really needs to see that much
detail of a driver's life. Pilots and train engineers stay in HOTELS at the
end of their day, not their respective vehicles.
Lastly, you hope in vain that EOBRs will bring the companies into
compliance with HOS, unless enforcement goes to them. Doncha know they'll
just find another way to finagle things, then blame the driver for it
anyway?
.
"What the f*** was that?" - Mayor of Hiroshima
Post by tscottme
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by tscottme
I think recorders are a good idea. The relevant comparison isn't
between a truck driver or truck and a passenger car, but commercial
aircraft and commercial road vehicles. Commercial aircraft, above a
minimum size, have been subject to these types of recorders for years.
Locomotives are also subject to event recorders.
Event recorders are fine and if they were going to be used in a similar
manner as they have been applied to other modes of transportation, then I
would not have objection to them, and correct me if I am wrong... but
aren't these devices used or scrutinized post incident ONLY in rail and
air?
An airplane does not land at an airport and have an FAA agent rush out on
the tarmac to plug into it to determine if the pilot made any in-flight
errors, or similarly when a train pulls into a terminal yard. They are
used
Post by TurboTrucker
to determine fault or blame when something goes wrong and AFTER something
happens that precipitates such scrutiny.
Drug-testing didn't start with trucking, it started well before that. In
fact there were high school athletes taking school district drug screens
years before workers under DOT regs were tapped for that privilege.
Without EOBRs too many people in and out of the industry are able to pretend
the HOS are being complied with. Customers are able to ignore the HOS
impact of their long delays, trucking companies and dispatchers are able to
say "we follow the HOS sctrictly", wink, wink, and then punish you for doing
exactly that.
The way trucks and their drivers operate on public roads is a matter of
public safety and public concern. The public has a right to expect the laws
affecting our industry will be enforced.
Cockpit Voice Recorders (CVR) and Flight Data Recorders (FDR) are routinely
used for non-accident related activities. For example, it's quite normal
for the FDR to be reviewed after some aircraft upset, hard landing, bad
turbulence, engine anomoly, etc. The limitation on the uses of FDR and CVR
are usually the matter of union contract and not FAA regulation. One
example in the news recently is another turbulence encounter involving an
Airbus A300. Shortly after Sept 11, 2001 an Airbus A300 crashed outside of
NYC. It appears that during a wake turbulence encounter shortly after
takeoff one crewmember applied the rudder too abruptly and the vertical part
of the tail broke off leading to a crash. This year another A300 was
invloved in something similar and the FDR was reviewed to discover that the
aircraft was not in-fact subject to excessive side-loads. When engines have
problems, or the aircraft lands too hard, the FDR is routinely examined.
CVRs are used less frequently simply because they are usually
over-written
Post by Chuck U. Farley
Post by tscottme
before they can be examined. CVRs are only required to record the last 30
minutes of audio. NASA and the aircraft industry make routine use of FDR
data.
Pilot's are subject to random or specific FAA exam, including the example
you cited of an FAA agent rushing out to examine either the pilot's records
or his activity. It's called a "ramp check". Rather than an FAA Inspector
plugging in is data logger, he will simply ask the airline to turn over FDR
data to their local designated FAA officer.
We could use EOBR surveillance to cut back on the many hours of wasted time
and some of the other unscrupulous practices drivers are presented with so
that the "suits" can pretend everyone is following the HOS.
It's these types of issues we could use to improve our working conditions,
but we have to get involved and get them implemented in such a way to help
us, not just give more false impressions.
The Airline Pilot's Association is in the forefront of research and lobbying
to make working conditions better in their industry. ALPA represents the
unionized pilots, not the airlines or the aircraft manufacturers.
Everytime
Post by Chuck U. Farley
Post by tscottme
ALPA speaks they have clean professionals represent their members in a sane
and cautious manner. They present specific improvements and explain the
benefits. In trucking we just seek to be able to wear ripped sweatpants and
pour piss in the parking lot while blaring our hillbilly slang across a 1000
watt kicker with roger-beep, echo, and reverb. I say we're lucky we aren't
forced to drive under police escort. If our problems were mostly the fault
of cars and bad bosses, wouldn't the truck stop be the nicest part of our
day. They are boss-free, cars are segregated from trucks, and the rest of
the traffic are fellow CDL drivers. Instead, the truck stop is a bubbling
sewer with every driver attempting to park 19 deep on the end of the last
fuel pump.
truckinsp
2004-11-24 14:06:54 UTC
Permalink
Post by tscottme
Drug-testing didn't start with trucking, it started well before that. In
fact there were high school athletes taking school district drug screens
years before workers under DOT regs were tapped for that privilege.
Without EOBRs too many people in and out of the industry are able to pretend
the HOS are being complied with. Customers are able to ignore the HOS
impact of their long delays, trucking companies and dispatchers are able to
say "we follow the HOS sctrictly", wink, wink, and then punish you for doing
exactly that.
The way trucks and their drivers operate on public roads is a matter of
public safety and public concern. The public has a right to expect the laws
affecting our industry will be enforced.
I couldn't agree with you more, Scott.
tscottme
2004-11-25 00:36:04 UTC
Permalink
Thanks. That's a mighty big endorsement.
--
Scott
James Ricks
2004-11-23 13:22:07 UTC
Permalink
TurboTrucker <***@bellsouth.net> wrote:

htttp://www.regulations.gov/AGCY_FEDERALMOTORCARRIERSAFETYADMINISTRATION.cfm
Post by TurboTrucker
The above will take you to the comment page where you can offer your
comments. Instructions are there for acceptable methods for submitting your
comments.
The proposal of my being subjected to a random check at any time of an
electronic device that would be required to be installed on my vehicle, by
enforcement authorities is something I am not prepared to condone or
tolerate. This is not because I expect to be found guilty of wrongdoing. It
is because it violates fundamental freedom(s) that this country was founded
on. I find it an unreasonable violation of an expected right to be able to
do my job without being subjected to an uncomfortable level of scrutiny and
mistrust.
Some will state that as drivers of commercial vehicles, we are expected to
be held to a higher standard, and I agree with that premise and in fact
have stated it myself. I operate my truck with that in mind each and every
day. We all have a responsibility to share the roads, and do our jobs in a
responsible manner, and with regard to the general public at all times.
I do not operate in an unsafe manner, nor do I align myself
with people that do.
I am not willing to continue
working in this industry if subjected to this device requirement.
Inside most of those trucks that are on the roads each day, is an average
person just trying to make a living."
~Tony~
Well said, Tony. Your comments , well reasoned as they, are echo many of my
thoughts on this. I truly don't want 'Uncle', or for that matter my employer
looking over my shoulder while I go about my daily grind.

However, as I look around the industry, it ain't the same as it was when we
apprenticed lo these many years ago. The caliber of human fodder willing to do
what we have chosen to do, in my opinion is not as high as it has been in the
past. What safety advances there have been are due as much to the technology
of speed limiters, trucks with better visibility, and motorists scared of
trucks enough to stay clear as some desire on the part of truck drivers to be
average Joes out to make a living.

Scott's comment about the proper analogy being commercial aircraft recorders,
not standard automobiles was also right on, even though those recorders
purpose is not wholly to limit operator's time in control as it seems those
proposed for trucks will be.

As stated, I don't like the oversight, but if we have to have them, lets ALL
have to have them. That would remove the reality that those of us who DO
choose to be legal have to try to compete economically with those who do not.

Jim
Dave Smith
2004-11-23 16:44:33 UTC
Permalink
Post by James Ricks
Well said, Tony. Your comments , well reasoned as they, are echo many of my
thoughts on this. I truly don't want 'Uncle', or for that matter my employer
looking over my shoulder while I go about my daily grind.
One of the benefits of driving a truck is being out on your own and not having a
boss breathing down the back of your neck. However, there are realities to be
faced. There are companies out there who push their drivers too hard and expect
them to fudge paper logs in order to appear to be in compliance. I have long
maintained that a drive should be able to make a decent wage within a reasonable
number of hours of work. As long as companies can get their drivers to doctor the
logs you can expect to have to work longer hours to make the same money because of
the people you are competing against.
Post by James Ricks
However, as I look around the industry, it ain't the same as it was when we
apprenticed lo these many years ago. The caliber of human fodder willing to do
what we have chosen to do, in my opinion is not as high as it has been in the
past.
I am not sure that I agree with that. I used to see trucks in horrendous
condition when I was inspecting them, and drivers who had no clue about how to log
their time. Deregulation led to a lot of cut throat competition, but there was
also a big change in enforcement practices. Companies stepped up their training
programs. While they may have run out of the sort of people they used to have
driving their trucks I don't think there is any evidence that the new drivers are
a lower quality. If anything, a lot of them might be considered to be
underemployed. There are a lot of people with degrees and/or management experience
driving trucks. From my experience, I would suggest that a lot of the newer
drivers are better educated and better trained than the drivers of a decade ago.
Post by James Ricks
As stated, I don't like the oversight, but if we have to have them, lets ALL
have to have them. That would remove the reality that those of us who DO
choose to be legal have to try to compete economically with those who do not.
Exactly.
TurboTrucker
2004-11-23 18:11:37 UTC
Permalink
Post by James Ricks
Well said, Tony. Your comments , well reasoned as they, are echo many
of my thoughts on this. I truly don't want 'Uncle', or for that matter
my employer looking over my shoulder while I go about my daily grind.
I am not perfect. I do practice what I preach about 99% of the time. There
are times that I do run in slight violation to make it home, or to overcome
an unexpected delay. I don't run tired. I don't take illegal dispatches.

The rules, as we all know, do not allow for every circumstance, nor every
type of run, and it is unfortunate that no one in the position of
establishing these regulations has EVER taken the differences into
consideration, to make it easier to conform the rules to the trip.

I know, like many people, that there are people out there in these trucks
that are screwing it up for all of us, and I don't consider the few times
that I have finished a run on time, fudged as it was, to be a part of the
problem that these boxes are going to address.

It's a precedent that I find completely objectionable, because they are
going to use them as a means to write citations RANDOMLY. If they were
going to be applied under the same standards as other recording devices,
and post incident to determine blame or fault, then I would be 100% and
squarely behind them.
Post by James Ricks
However, as I look around the industry, it ain't the same as it was
when we apprenticed lo these many years ago. The caliber of human
fodder willing to do what we have chosen to do, in my opinion is not
as high as it has been in the past. What safety advances there have
been are due as much to the technology of speed limiters, trucks with
better visibility, and motorists scared of trucks enough to stay clear
as some desire on the part of truck drivers to be average Joes out to
make a living.
I absolutely agree. There are some rather scummy companies, that hire
scummy drivers. I'd love to see them all out of the game.

I don't think that people realize that when a carrier is audited and found
to be in violation, that the FMCSA more often than not, will reduce fines
in a negotiation, when a carrier requests it. This is nonsense.
Post by James Ricks
Scott's comment about the proper analogy being commercial aircraft
recorders, not standard automobiles was also right on, even though
those recorders purpose is not wholly to limit operator's time in
control as it seems those proposed for trucks will be.
Exactly. This is a new frontier in the use of a recording device, if it is
implemented.
Post by James Ricks
As stated, I don't like the oversight, but if we have to have them,
lets ALL have to have them. That would remove the reality that those
of us who DO choose to be legal have to try to compete economically
with those who do not.
Here's another interesting sidenote. To my understanding, this proposal
only covers trucks. Buses, that would be carrying upwards of 70 people at a
time and whose lives are in the hands of that one driver, will not be
required to have them.

I was held up for many hours the other night when a Greyhound driver
apparently fell asleep and rearended a truck near Walton, Kentucky. 22
people were injured. Had it been a direct hit, rather than a glancing blow,
there might have been many KILLED.

~Tony~
truckinsp
2004-11-24 14:05:11 UTC
Permalink
Post by TurboTrucker
In this case, the end is not justified by the proposed means. The trucking
industry has steadily improved their safety numbers over the past decade,
and this continues to be the case. Enforcement of the HOS regulations at
roadside inspections, audits of carriers, and fines associated with
violations are effective tools of enforcement, and reason to have made me
stay compliant for many years now.
I have to disagree with you on this one, Tony........enforcement actions
HAVEN'T reduced the number of false logs that we see every day.......in
fact, if anything, it's become a game and the Feds are sick of it. There
is no way inspectors can find most of the false logs at an inspection, very
few companies ever get chosen for compliance reviews, and way too many
companies are "correcting" logs and having the drivers resign them......the
HOS regulations are treated as a joke by a lot companies and drivers......I
really can't blame the Feds for looking for a new method of enforcing the
HOS.........EOBRS are expensive, but it is a way of leveling the playing
field so that those companies that flaunt the HOS don't run those companies
that try to stay legal out of business.......
Whitelightning
2004-11-24 16:44:52 UTC
Permalink
Post by truckinsp
I have to disagree with you on this one, Tony........enforcement actions
HAVEN'T reduced the number of false logs that we see every day.......in
fact, if anything, it's become a game and the Feds are sick of it. There
is no way inspectors can find most of the false logs at an inspection, very
few companies ever get chosen for compliance reviews, and way too many
companies are "correcting" logs and having the drivers resign
them......the
Post by truckinsp
HOS regulations are treated as a joke by a lot companies and
drivers......I
Post by truckinsp
really can't blame the Feds for looking for a new method of enforcing the
HOS.........EOBRS are expensive, but it is a way of leveling the playing
field so that those companies that flaunt the HOS don't run those companies
that try to stay legal out of business.......
I've been reading and biting my tongue, but this is the straw that broke the
camels back. On one side I like the idea IF it finally forces someone to
deal with shippers and receivers who are 90% of the problem with running hot
when it comes to hours.
The other side hates it as it is micro managing to the nth degree, and
possibility for abuse is astronomical, and equipment error even larger.
There have been numerous cases involving the little black boxes in the air
bag systems on cars giving incorrect data. There was a case here three
weeks ago where the system reported the car was doing 114 mph at the time of
collision, John Force couldn't have accelerated to that speed where the
collision took place.

But what really steamed me was "games" remark. Most truckers wouldn't be
playing the game if they weren't getting screwed by shippers who don't give
a damn, receivers who care even less, and goverment agencies that are
reaching into their wallet every chance they get. The guy that has the
least say about any thing in the industry is the one held most responsible,
and that flat stinks, its worse then stinks it sucks.

Whitelightning
Dave Smith
2004-11-24 17:04:47 UTC
Permalink
Post by Whitelightning
I've been reading and biting my tongue, but this is the straw that broke the
camels back. On one side I like the idea IF it finally forces someone to
deal with shippers and receivers who are 90% of the problem with running hot
when it comes to hours.
I don't dispute that there is pressure from the shippers to get loads delivered.
They are paying for a service and they need their goods to get there on time.
However, the problem goes deeper than that. There is a social attitude to deal
with, that being the belief in competition and profit. They compete on price,
and reliability, and safety being a lesser priority. And it goes right down the
the consumers wanting to get as much as possible for the lowest price. The
truckers get squeezed. They have to bid low for the jobs, and the companies that
try to run in compliance get pushed out of the way by the companies that
undercut them by running illegally.
Post by Whitelightning
But what really steamed me was "games" remark. Most truckers wouldn't be
playing the game if they weren't getting screwed by shippers who don't give
a damn, receivers who care even less, and goverment agencies that are
reaching into their wallet every chance they get. The guy that has the
least say about any thing in the industry is the one held most responsible,
and that flat stinks, its worse then stinks it sucks.
Yes, he is ultimately responsible, because he is the one who is agreeing to do
it, knowing that if he doesn't someone else will.
Whitelightning
2004-11-25 03:06:37 UTC
Permalink
"Dave Smith" <***@sympatico.ca> wrote in message news:***@sympatico.ca...
hot
Post by Dave Smith
Post by Whitelightning
when it comes to hours.
I don't dispute that there is pressure from the shippers to get loads delivered.
They are paying for a service and they need their goods to get there on time.
Then they need to get the truck loaded in a timely manner, and except the
responsablity for the load arriving late when it was loaded late.
Post by Dave Smith
However, the problem goes deeper than that. There is a social attitude to deal
with, that being the belief in competition and profit. They compete on price,
and reliability, and safety being a lesser priority. And it goes right down the
the consumers wanting to get as much as possible for the lowest price. The
truckers get squeezed. They have to bid low for the jobs, and the companies that
try to run in compliance get pushed out of the way by the companies that
undercut them by running illegally.
How many times have you heard union drivers talk about having to doctor log
books, or skirting scale houses, or any of the other things you here many "I
can take care of myself, dont need no orginization behind me" drivers talk
about?
Post by Dave Smith
Post by Whitelightning
But what really steamed me was "games" remark. Most truckers wouldn't be
playing the game if they weren't getting screwed by shippers who don't give
a damn, receivers who care even less, and goverment agencies that are
reaching into their wallet every chance they get. The guy that has the
least say about any thing in the industry is the one held most responsible,
and that flat stinks, its worse then stinks it sucks.
Yes, he is ultimately responsible, because he is the one who is agreeing to do
it, knowing that if he doesn't someone else will.
you hit it almost square that time, if he doesnt it isnt a matter of someone
else will, its a matter of he is unemployed, his kids go hungry, and they
lose the house.

Whitelightning
gpsman
2004-11-24 17:31:50 UTC
Permalink
<snipped for brevity><
But what really steamed me was "games" remark. Most truckers wouldn't
be playing the game if they weren't getting screwed by shippers who
don't give a damn, receivers who care even less, and goverment agencies
that are reaching into their wallet every chance they get.
I gotta call Bullshit here. Drivers could end 75% of this "getting
screwed" by simple compliance with the HOS. The reduction of the
industry's efficiency would bring an about-face in 72 hours.

The fact is, drivers are screwing themselves and each other by lying
about how long it takes to do everything. They've been doing it and
teaching each other to do it for 60 years! It equates to *wanting* to
work for free. And then bitching because "other people" let us.

The guy that has the
least say about any thing in the industry is the one held most
responsible, and that flat stinks, its worse then stinks it sucks.
Bullshit again. The group held most responsible is going to take the
fall (again) for what is entirely the groups' fault.

Driver problems fall on my shoulders because I'm a driver. Drivers have
looked to someone else to solve all their problems while being unwilling
to withdraw their craniums from their rectums and take a good hard look
inward rather than outward.

Electronic monitoring is exactly what we deserve because there ain't
enough honest men in our ranks to form an infantry platoon.

Now, clear a space under the right side of your dash.
-----

- gpsman


--
Posted at http://www.layover.com/
Trucking jobs, news, features, chat rooms, and more!
Whitelightning
2004-11-25 03:39:53 UTC
Permalink
Post by gpsman
I gotta call Bullshit here. Drivers could end 75% of this "getting
screwed" by simple compliance with the HOS. The reduction of the
industry's efficiency would bring an about-face in 72 hours.
You lead the way and tell me how long you stay employed. There's 20 guys
waiting in line for your wheels, and the company could give a rats ass about
how experianced they are, only thier willingness to get the load there. And
when they get burnt out, or too many tickets, there's 20 more behind each of
them.
Post by gpsman
The fact is, drivers are screwing themselves and each other by lying
about how long it takes to do everything. They've been doing it and
teaching each other to do it for 60 years! It equates to *wanting* to
work for free. And then bitching because "other people" let us.
They dont want to work for free, they want to keep the wheels turning, cause
if they aint turning, the driver aint making no money.
Post by gpsman
The guy that has the
Post by Whitelightning
least say about any thing in the industry is the one held most
responsible, and that flat stinks, its worse then stinks it sucks.
Bullshit again. The group held most responsible is going to take the
fall (again) for what is entirely the groups' fault.
Group, you keep saying group, what group, there is no group, there hasn't
been a group in 40 years. There was just a bunch fools who had been feed a
line of Bullshit about being independent tough guys able to negotiate their
own deals that undermined the group untill it hardly exsits at all, and now
a bunch of youngsters industry wise with out a leg to stand on.
Post by gpsman
Driver problems fall on my shoulders because I'm a driver. Drivers have
looked to someone else to solve all their problems while being unwilling
to withdraw their craniums from their rectums and take a good hard look
inward rather than outward.
Electronic monitoring is exactly what we deserve because there ain't
enough honest men in our ranks to form an infantry platoon.
You take point, I'll follow.. It isnt going to change untill some one with
authority forces it to change, or like back in the 30's blood flows freely.
The latter cant happen because there is no "band of brothers" willing to go
first, nor keep their mouths shut after the fact. So that leaves those with
authority to make it happen. And those with the power don't hold steering
wheels for a living.

Whitelightning
gpsman
2004-11-25 05:28:09 UTC
Permalink
Post by Whitelightning
Post by gpsman
I gotta call Bullshit here. Drivers could end 75% of this "getting
screwed" by simple compliance with the HOS. The reduction of the
industry's efficiency would bring an about-face in 72 hours.
You lead the way and tell me how long you stay employed.
I'm taking some time off but my job is waiting for me. And if it weren't
I could get on with another carrier, easy.

There's 20 guys
Post by Whitelightning
waiting in line for your wheels, and the company could give a rats ass
about how experianced they are, only thier willingness to get the load
there. And when they get burnt out, or too many tickets, there's 20
more behind each of them.
Um... bullshit. My company has 5-10% of their 600 trucks parked at
all times.
Post by Whitelightning
Post by gpsman
The fact is, drivers are screwing themselves and each other by lying
about how long it takes to do everything. They've been doing it and
teaching each other to do it for 60 years! It equates to *wanting* to
work for free. And then bitching because "other people" let us.
They dont want to work for free, they want to keep the wheels turning,
cause if they aint turning, the driver aint making no money.
Yes. But the way to make *more* money is to turn fewer miles due to
compliance w/the HOS. It won't be in this paycheck but would make up for
it in the not too distant future.
Post by Whitelightning
Post by gpsman
The guy that has the
Post by Whitelightning
least say about any thing in the industry is the one held most
responsible, and that flat stinks, its worse then stinks it sucks.
Bullshit again. The group held most responsible is going to take the
fall (again) for what is entirely the groups' fault.
Group, you keep saying group, what group, there is no group, there
hasn't been a group in 40 years.
Affirmative. There's never been a group or brotherhood of drivers. Some
drivers toed the line for fear of getting their heads cracked but
drivers, as a rule, are willing to screw themselves and their buddy if
it means another dollar at the end of *this* pay period.

There was just a bunch fools who had been feed a
Post by Whitelightning
line of Bullshit about being independent tough guys able to negotiate
their own deals that undermined the group untill it hardly exsits at
all, and now a bunch of youngsters industry wise with out a leg to
stand on.
There's plenty of leg, just no muscle. Or brain to run it with.
Post by Whitelightning
Post by gpsman
Driver problems fall on my shoulders because I'm a driver. Drivers
have looked to someone else to solve all their problems while being
unwilling to withdraw their craniums from their rectums and take a
good hard look inward rather than outward.
Electronic monitoring is exactly what we deserve because there ain't
enough honest men in our ranks to form an infantry platoon.
You take point, I'll follow.. It isnt going to change untill some one
with authority forces it to change, or like back in the 30's blood
flows freely. The latter cant happen because there is no "band of
brothers" willing to go first, nor keep their mouths shut after the
fact. So that leaves those with authority to make it happen. And those
with the power don't hold steering wheels for a living.
I took point a long time ago. I got 999,999 on drag. Those with the
"authority" be right here, postin' and bitchin' and whinin' and postin'.

It's long past time to change our own diaper, too late probably.

Relax, recorders will never happen in our lifetime. If they did we'd all
be forced to "run legal" and the Big Money and DC ain't gonna force us
to to that. That would cut into the bottom line of the largest campaign
contributors and that ain't never gonna be allowed to happen.

Bet ya...
-----

- gpsman


--
Posted at http://www.layover.com/
Trucking jobs, news, features, chat rooms, and more!
tscottme
2004-11-25 04:51:45 UTC
Permalink
Post by Whitelightning
But what really steamed me was "games" remark. Most truckers wouldn't be
playing the game if they weren't getting screwed by shippers who don't give
a damn, receivers who care even less, and goverment agencies that are
reaching into their wallet every chance they get. The guy that has the
least say about any thing in the industry is the one held most
responsible,
Post by Whitelightning
and that flat stinks, its worse then stinks it sucks.
Whitelightning
Sorry I disagree with you that "most drivers wouldn't be playing games..."
I know for a fact that drivers that are on the clock, not pay per mile, and
have plenty of time to meet a schedule, will still speed and rush like a
maniac to get it done ASAP. Now how much sense does it make to rush when
you are paid by the hour, have time to kill, risk tickets, and only make
less money by doing so? How many of us have delayed leaving out Sunday
night until we have only enough time to drive straight through and get to a
customer on time? There are understandable reasons for leaving late, but
that doesn't indicate to me that given the chance drivers will usually
choose to put safety ahead of other considerations.

The boss doesn't fall asleep behind the wheel and run over someone, that's
the driver. To believe what so many people say about how little time
drivers have you would expect the truck stops to close up, what with nobody
having enough time to ever step in to the restaurant, the stores, and the
video poker area, those areas are crowded all the time.

What I see drivers doing about the HOS, speeding when it's unnecessary,
parking the truck in dangerous or places or blocking others just to minimize
an already short walk, shaving corners so they can get through an
intersection at a higher speed, doesn't indicate their primary concern is
being safe. It seems the primary concern is not getting caught or making
things easy.
--
Scott

"Arafat remains in stable condition after dying in a Paris hospital."
TurboTrucker
2004-11-24 18:45:21 UTC
Permalink
Post by truckinsp
I have to disagree with you on this one, Tony........enforcement
actions HAVEN'T reduced the number of false logs that we see every
day.......in fact, if anything, it's become a game and the Feds are
sick of it.
Well...you'd certainly have more of a handle on that than I ever would. I'm
not sure that I have stated that the number of false logs were in a
decline, but the industry's safety numbers have been steadily improving.

You and I know that something needs to be done, but do you think that this
is the answer?
Post by truckinsp
There is no way inspectors can find most of the false
logs at an inspection, very few companies ever get chosen for
compliance reviews, and way too many companies are "correcting" logs
and having the drivers resign them......the HOS regulations are
treated as a joke by a lot companies and drivers......I really can't
blame the Feds for looking for a new method of enforcing the
HOS.........
Granted, and shouldn't the focus be placed on those carriers that condone
this practice? Anyone with a brain and doing a little research knows who
they are. I know you do. Surely, there are ways to do this. One of the most
maddening things is for the government to place requirements upon the
people, and then fail to fund the enforcement bodies charged with insuring
that they are complied with.
Post by truckinsp
EOBRS are expensive, but it is a way of leveling the
playing field so that those companies that flaunt the HOS don't run
those companies that try to stay legal out of business.......
If I truly felt that this would be the end result, I'd probably agree with
you, but knowing the financial aspects of the industry as I do, along with
the competitive forces in play, this will break the backs of far too many
people.

It wouldn't break me, but why fight it? There comes a time when you just
can't see the enjoyment in the job anymore. I'm already looking for an exit
strategy. I'm dead serious. I'm in the planning stages of doing something
I've always wanted to do....I'm going to open a used car lot....

~Tony~
Dave Smith
2004-11-24 20:07:45 UTC
Permalink
Post by TurboTrucker
Granted, and shouldn't the focus be placed on those carriers that condone
this practice? Anyone with a brain and doing a little research knows who
they are. I know you do. Surely, there are ways to do this. One of the most
maddening things is for the government to place requirements upon the
people, and then fail to fund the enforcement bodies charged with insuring
that they are complied with.
Geeze Tony, that's downright un American of you to suggest that. The law is
enacted in a democratic manner though consultation with the parties involved
and a considerable amount of lobbying. Once it is enacted it is backed up by
penalties for those in violation. You should not have to have an army of
enforcement officers to enforce it. That is contrary to the whole political
agenda these days. We are seeing more and more things deregulated with the
understanding that industry can be and should be self regulating.
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by truckinsp
EOBRS are expensive, but it is a way of leveling the
playing field so that those companies that flaunt the HOS don't run
those companies that try to stay legal out of business.......
If I truly felt that this would be the end result, I'd probably agree with
you, but knowing the financial aspects of the industry as I do, along with
the competitive forces in play, this will break the backs of far too many
people.
How so? If they are all required to have EOBRS they will all face the same
cost. It should be only those who are currently violating the regulations who
are going to see a financial impact. They won't be able to fudge their logs in
order to make drivers work more for less. It has been suggested many times that
bringing in a system that does a better job of forcing compliance will level
the playing field, and that will give the compliant problems an edge.
Post by TurboTrucker
It wouldn't break me, but why fight it? There comes a time when you just
can't see the enjoyment in the job anymore. I'm already looking for an exit
strategy.
I know that feeling. The job wasn't fun anymore and I took the exit :-)
TurboTrucker
2004-11-25 02:36:32 UTC
Permalink
Post by Dave Smith
Post by TurboTrucker
If I truly felt that this would be the end result, I'd probably agree
with you, but knowing the financial aspects of the industry as I do,
along with the competitive forces in play, this will break the backs
of far too many people.
How so? If they are all required to have EOBRS they will all face the
same cost. It should be only those who are currently violating the
regulations who are going to see a financial impact. They won't be
able to fudge their logs in order to make drivers work more for less.
It has been suggested many times that bringing in a system that does a
better job of forcing compliance will level the playing field, and
that will give the compliant problems an edge.
That probably is very true in terms of the long run. Short term prospects
look rather dim. The industry is facing a $3,000 to $5,000 jump in the cost
of a truck to burn fuel cleaner in the next two years. EOBR's stand to add
a similar cost per truck and would be implemented right about the same
time, presumably. If all of this hit's the high end in cost figures, that's
going to pretty much eat up a year's worth of profit for most carriers, on
a per truck basis.

I don't think that most people have any idea just how thin profit margins
are for a great deal of the industry. I think that this will have a far
reaching, and negative impact on may carriers that will drive them over the
edge of insolvency. Maybe that's not such a bad thing, because it will
raise the bar for those that can weather it, but there will be a great deal
of people hurt, at least temporarily.
Post by Dave Smith
I know that feeling. The job wasn't fun anymore and I took the exit :-)
It's funny that you mention that. I look around, and witness examples of
people that have made it to retirement, and they do this comfortably today.

I read a great deal, and have noticed that the trends in corporations, and
especially in trucking, are to cut benefits, push to utilize independent
contractors, and avoid all things that used to keep a consistent workforce.

I shudder to think where all of this will end up. Retirement will not be an
option for too many people in the future, and it's a sad state of affairs
in my opinion too.

~Tony~
tscottme
2004-11-25 05:17:26 UTC
Permalink
Post by TurboTrucker
I don't think that most people have any idea just how thin profit margins
are for a great deal of the industry. I think that this will have a far
reaching, and negative impact on may carriers that will drive them over the
edge of insolvency. Maybe that's not such a bad thing, because it will
raise the bar for those that can weather it, but there will be a great deal
of people hurt, at least temporarily.
The more trucks and the more drivers that leave the industry, the more
profitable it will be for the remainder.
--
Scott

"Arafat remains in stable condition after dying in a Paris hospital."
TurboTrucker
2004-11-25 07:05:09 UTC
Permalink
Post by tscottme
The more trucks and the more drivers that leave the industry, the more
profitable it will be for the remainder.
Maybe...maybe not. If defections occur to any great degree, which it could,
it's highly possible that our economy could tank.

Of course, Bush may have a hand in that long before the boxes do.

~Tony~
tscottme
2004-11-25 11:29:06 UTC
Permalink
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by tscottme
The more trucks and the more drivers that leave the industry, the more
profitable it will be for the remainder.
Maybe...maybe not. If defections occur to any great degree, which it could,
it's highly possible that our economy could tank.
Of course, Bush may have a hand in that long before the boxes do.
~Tony~
Panic early and avoid the rush? Our growth rate is twice that of Europe.
Our unemployment rate is half that of Europe. If our economy slides any
further each of us will have a French maid and a German mechanic, of course
they will require 9 months vacation each year. <shudder>
--
Scott

"Arafat remains in stable condition after dying in a Paris hospital."
Dave Smith
2004-11-25 14:59:47 UTC
Permalink
Post by tscottme
Panic early and avoid the rush? Our growth rate is twice that of Europe.
Our unemployment rate is half that of Europe. If our economy slides any
further each of us will have a French maid and a German mechanic, of course
they will require 9 months vacation each year. <shudder>
Or the German mechanic will have you for a maid :-)
gunslinger
2004-11-24 22:55:37 UTC
Permalink
Post by truckinsp
.the
HOS regulations are treated as a joke by a lot companies and drivers......I
really can't blame the Feds for looking for a new method of enforcing the
HOS.........EOBRS are expensive, but it is a way of leveling the playing
field so that those companies that flaunt the HOS don't run those companies
that try to stay legal out of business.......
With all due respect, the HOS regulations are now and have for a long
time been, a joke. When they were first implemented, they were
designed solely to keep companies from running drivers into the
ground. They have become, however, mostly a way to extract $$ from
folks who can't manage to do a log book correctly. You know it,
drivers know it, trucking companies know it, and shippers and
receivers know it.

Now, with that said, I am fortunate enough to be in a situation where
I don't *need* to fake logs or run two log books.

Nevertheless, I am vehemently opposed to EOBR's. They are a dramatic
violation of what little privacy we have left. Trucking is already one
of the most highly ruled-and-regulated professions. Enough! Aside from
that, I see them as yet another Constitutional violation in that their
mandate would then require me to provide evidence against myself, even
if there exists no probable cause or reasonable suspicion of any
wrongdoing on my part. And I'm sorry, but just being a trucker is
neither.

Here's the basic question regarding EOBR's:

IF, for example, I am running into New England on a Sunday evening,
and am getting close to my available hours, and run up on a major
traffic incident (say, a crash with 1 or more fatalities), and my
hours expire while I'm sitting parked on the highway in traffic, WHAT
the HELL am I supposed to do, if I have an EOBR??? Just sit there?
With our current log books, I will proceed at least far enough to find
safe off-highway (as in, *not* a ramp or a shoulder) parking - which
is the only sensible solution. Would that solution be available if
were using an EOBR?

Or what if one simply can't find any place *to* park, and goes over a
few minutes while trying to do so? This is pretty common in the
northeast, especially on I-81 on Sunday night when it sometimes seems
as if every damn truck in the country is heading to NYC.

Bottom line is, EOBR's will FORCE the elimination of many hours per
week of driving time from a driver's schedule, since he will need to
be *absolutely* sure he can park before his hours expire. It will also
*force* drivers to run UNDER the speed limit, since I would imagine
there will be plenty of officious little pricks who'd just *love* to
write thousands of "unbeatable" speeding tickets. Another loss of
productivity.

It's a load of crap. If EOBR's are mandated on all trucks, I imagine I
will either find a way to disable it, or find another career.

In fact, I think I will see about finding a programmer who can put
together a "system" for us computer-enabled truckers to make an EOBR
say precisely what we *want* it to say. Should be a pretty big
money-maker!


__--Gunslinger--__

Quis custodiet ipsos custodes


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TurboTrucker
2004-11-25 03:02:15 UTC
Permalink
Post by gunslinger
I see them as yet another Constitutional violation in that their
mandate would then require me to provide evidence against myself, even
if there exists no probable cause or reasonable suspicion of any
wrongdoing on my part.
I've been loath to add this into the mix, but think about it. With your
door wide open while they hook up to the box, what's to keep them from
looking around while they are in there, again with no invitation or
permission. They wouldn't have to obtain it. The door was open....

It's just another foot in that door....literally.

~Tony~
tscottme
2004-11-25 05:20:47 UTC
Permalink
Post by TurboTrucker
I've been loath to add this into the mix, but think about it. With your
door wide open while they hook up to the box, what's to keep them from
looking around while they are in there, again with no invitation or
permission. They wouldn't have to obtain it. The door was open....
How is it any different than reviewing for your logbook or checking your
seatbelt? And why wouldn't EOBRs be read by some wireless reader or through
a jack on the outside of the truck?
--
Scott

"Arafat remains in stable condition after dying in a Paris hospital."
kc0iv
2004-11-25 13:22:54 UTC
Permalink
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by gunslinger
I see them as yet another Constitutional violation in that their
mandate would then require me to provide evidence against myself, even
if there exists no probable cause or reasonable suspicion of any
wrongdoing on my part.
I've been loath to add this into the mix, but think about it. With your
door wide open while they hook up to the box, what's to keep them from
looking around while they are in there, again with no invitation or
permission. They wouldn't have to obtain it. The door was open....
It's just another foot in that door....literally.
~Tony~
I would doubt Tony that they will have to open the door and make a
connection to the "black box". What I see happening is more on the
order of the operation of "pre-pass" as the truck drives by it will
transmit data to the scale-house and if a violation has occured during
the last 7 days the truck will be called behind. Same goes for non
scale-house checking.

Thing I see about the "black box" is I think the enforcement side
thinks it will be the answer. And for those that want to run legal it
will prove they are legal. However, for those that want to run
illegal there will be away around the "black box." I'm betting that
within a few months after they are required there will be black market
units available that will beat the "black box." Saying it in a simple
way there will be two black boxes just like there are two logbooks
now.

HOS is not the way to correct the problem. But it is the easy, feel
good approach. The FEDs can SAY they wrote a bunch of rules that
address the problem. But until they draw everyone into the circle
nothing is going to really happen.

kc0iv
TurboTrucker
2004-11-25 13:33:40 UTC
Permalink
Post by kc0iv
I would doubt Tony that they will have to open the door and make a
connection to the "black box". What I see happening is more on the
order of the operation of "pre-pass" as the truck drives by it will
transmit data to the scale-house and if a violation has occured during
the last 7 days the truck will be called behind. Same goes for non
scale-house checking.
If THAT is true, then this is even worse than I thought.
Post by kc0iv
Thing I see about the "black box" is I think the enforcement side
thinks it will be the answer. And for those that want to run legal it
will prove they are legal. However, for those that want to run
illegal there will be away around the "black box." I'm betting that
within a few months after they are required there will be black market
units available that will beat the "black box." Saying it in a simple
way there will be two black boxes just like there are two logbooks
now.
I dunno...but if history stays true, people can find a way around just
about everything that tries to keep them in line.
Post by kc0iv
HOS is not the way to correct the problem. But it is the easy, feel
good approach. The FEDs can SAY they wrote a bunch of rules that
address the problem. But until they draw everyone into the circle
nothing is going to really happen.
Which is why I offered my comments to the FMCSA, for all the good that they
might do.

One thing for sure that this has done....it's got me running to the drug
store for some Selsun Blue....because my dander has never been up as much
as it has over this issue.

~Tony~
kc0iv
2004-11-27 00:18:57 UTC
Permalink
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by kc0iv
I would doubt Tony that they will have to open the door and make a
connection to the "black box". What I see happening is more on the
order of the operation of "pre-pass" as the truck drives by it will
transmit data to the scale-house and if a violation has occured during
the last 7 days the truck will be called behind. Same goes for non
scale-house checking.
If THAT is true, then this is even worse than I thought.
Taking a guess I'd say it would cost less than $10 to add the
circuitry for the RF portion. As far as the data required to transmit
the required information a single byte of data plus an ID code is all
it would take.

A couple of years ago I looked into the design of a "black-box" and
it's wasn't really that involved. It could be done with about a half
dozen chips. Most of it could be handled by a single micro-computer
chip.
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by kc0iv
Thing I see about the "black box" is I think the enforcement side
thinks it will be the answer. And for those that want to run legal it
will prove they are legal. However, for those that want to run
illegal there will be away around the "black box." I'm betting that
within a few months after they are required there will be black market
units available that will beat the "black box." Saying it in a simple
way there will be two black boxes just like there are two logbooks
now.
I dunno...but if history stays true, people can find a way around just
about everything that tries to keep them in line.
Where there is a buck to be made there is someone that will create
what it takes to make that buck.
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by kc0iv
HOS is not the way to correct the problem. But it is the easy, feel
good approach. The FEDs can SAY they wrote a bunch of rules that
address the problem. But until they draw everyone into the circle
nothing is going to really happen.
Which is why I offered my comments to the FMCSA, for all the good that they
might do.
One thing for sure that this has done....it's got me running to the drug
store for some Selsun Blue....because my dander has never been up as much
as it has over this issue.
~Tony~
If I was a betting man I bet that the FEDs will go the route of the
"black box." And in a short time they will findout that it's not the
answer. However, I doubt that they will ever admit they were wrong.

As with right now they know the majority of offenders but they won't
go after them. They not about to upset these major carriers. To much
pressure comes into play.

The FEDs know the amount of freight that has to be moved can't be done
with the present number of trucks on the road if all trucks were to
operate 100% legal. I'd love to see what OOIDA has tried to get done
for 1 month where every driver drove 100% legal. Just think of all
the freight that wouldn't get moved. I'd like to see it done in say
Sept. or Oct. rather than June. Hit the Christmas hauling season and
then watch the fun when the stores don't have their products.

kc0iv
tscottme
2004-11-28 01:36:46 UTC
Permalink
Post by kc0iv
The FEDs know the amount of freight that has to be moved can't be done
with the present number of trucks on the road if all trucks were to
operate 100% legal. I'd love to see what OOIDA has tried to get done
for 1 month where every driver drove 100% legal. Just think of all
the freight that wouldn't get moved. I'd like to see it done in say
Sept. or Oct. rather than June. Hit the Christmas hauling season and
then watch the fun when the stores don't have their products.
kc0iv
If that's such a good idea then what in Heaven's name is everyone's big
problem with EOBRs? Nobody has really argued the recorders will be
inaccurate. If a temporary "work to the rules" effort will be as dramatic
as people pretend, then wouldn't a full-time EOBR-enforced "work to the
rule" atmoshpere be even better. No short-term strike or work slowdown is
going to be effective if everyone knows it will just last a short and
definite time. It seems to me an EOBR-enforced outbreak of HOS complaince
will force the customers, Feds, and the trucking companies to live by their
handiwork.
--
Scott

"Arafat remains in stable condition after dying in a Paris hospital."
kc0iv
2004-11-28 10:25:08 UTC
Permalink
Post by tscottme
Post by kc0iv
The FEDs know the amount of freight that has to be moved can't be done
with the present number of trucks on the road if all trucks were to
operate 100% legal. I'd love to see what OOIDA has tried to get done
for 1 month where every driver drove 100% legal. Just think of all
the freight that wouldn't get moved. I'd like to see it done in say
Sept. or Oct. rather than June. Hit the Christmas hauling season and
then watch the fun when the stores don't have their products.
kc0iv
If that's such a good idea then what in Heaven's name is everyone's big
problem with EOBRs? Nobody has really argued the recorders will be
inaccurate. If a temporary "work to the rules" effort will be as dramatic
as people pretend, then wouldn't a full-time EOBR-enforced "work to the
rule" atmoshpere be even better. No short-term strike or work slowdown is
going to be effective if everyone knows it will just last a short and
definite time. It seems to me an EOBR-enforced outbreak of HOS complaince
will force the customers, Feds, and the trucking companies to live by their
handiwork.
I really don't have a problem with EOBRs. I just don't think they
will do what everyone thinks they will. This whole thing is about
safety right? Well if it takes more trucks on the road to do the same
level of work then how can it be safer? Let alone that most of those
additional trucks will be driven by less skilled drivers.

It's odd Scott that you don't think a strike or work slowdown is
effective. Since that is the very action that unions have used for
years to get what they want.

kc0iv
MaxxCorp, INC.
2004-11-28 14:39:44 UTC
Permalink
This thread has been very interesting & amusing. I feel that the fear
that everyone has about "BLACK BOXES" is that they will be used to
stop a driver & then used to write a bunch of tickets. While I think
that anybody who continuously violates the HOS rules should be FINED &
possibly face the loss of their license if they are a rampant abuser,
I don't think this should be done by a roadside stop.

What needs to happen is when the legislation is written forcing them
on us, there is language written into it that only allows tickets &
other enforcement activities to be done from a AUDIT of the data at a
off-site location. Also there would then be avenues of appeal for
possible equipment malfunction or other possible errors.

Face it, we have brought this upon ourselves by the actions of those
that BRAG about running multiple logbooks & running illegally. While I
don't know if the HOS are correct as far as being totally safe &
everything, I think if they are written based upon medical & sleep
research & designed TOTALLY for Driver & Motorist safety, then we need
to accept them & follow them. If you don't, then you need to get out
of this business. Just because you feel you can drive longer & more
than everyone else doesn't give you th right to BREAK THE LAW. If
everyone did this, we would live in ANARACHY.

BLACK BOXES will happen & soon. All we can do is prepare for them &
make sure that the LAWS written are written fairly & properly to
protect us the best way. I would think OOIDA would be a MAJOR FORCE in
this !!!!!
Post by kc0iv
Post by tscottme
Post by kc0iv
The FEDs know the amount of freight that has to be moved can't be done
with the present number of trucks on the road if all trucks were to
operate 100% legal. I'd love to see what OOIDA has tried to get done
for 1 month where every driver drove 100% legal. Just think of all
the freight that wouldn't get moved. I'd like to see it done in say
Sept. or Oct. rather than June. Hit the Christmas hauling season and
then watch the fun when the stores don't have their products.
kc0iv
If that's such a good idea then what in Heaven's name is everyone's big
problem with EOBRs? Nobody has really argued the recorders will be
inaccurate. If a temporary "work to the rules" effort will be as dramatic
as people pretend, then wouldn't a full-time EOBR-enforced "work to the
rule" atmoshpere be even better. No short-term strike or work slowdown is
going to be effective if everyone knows it will just last a short and
definite time. It seems to me an EOBR-enforced outbreak of HOS complaince
will force the customers, Feds, and the trucking companies to live by their
handiwork.
I really don't have a problem with EOBRs. I just don't think they
will do what everyone thinks they will. This whole thing is about
safety right? Well if it takes more trucks on the road to do the same
level of work then how can it be safer? Let alone that most of those
additional trucks will be driven by less skilled drivers.
It's odd Scott that you don't think a strike or work slowdown is
effective. Since that is the very action that unions have used for
years to get what they want.
kc0iv
TurboTrucker
2004-11-28 15:33:30 UTC
Permalink
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
This thread has been very interesting & amusing.
I'm touched that you find it funny.
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
I feel that the fear
that everyone has about "BLACK BOXES" is that they will be used to
stop a driver & then used to write a bunch of tickets. While I think
that anybody who continuously violates the HOS rules should be FINED &
possibly face the loss of their license if they are a rampant abuser,
I don't think this should be done by a roadside stop.
Well...It WILL be done that way, just as we are fined based upon the
logbook today.
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
What needs to happen is when the legislation is written forcing them
on us, there is language written into it that only allows tickets &
other enforcement activities to be done from a AUDIT of the data at a
off-site location. Also there would then be avenues of appeal for
possible equipment malfunction or other possible errors.
The Federal Government turned over the vast majority of enforcing the rules
placed upon truckers years ago to the states. That will not change, and in
fact will likely even increase.

Use your noodle. What would be the benefit of placing a recording device in
a vehicle if the results will only be available with some prior notice,
demanding it be ready for inspection? No...they will want random checks
performed either at the scales, or will even equip patrol cars with reading
devices, or the device itself will print a paper record that will be
available to anyone authorized to view it. It's a complete joke to even
think that they will do otherwise.

How many people have tried to dispute the accuracy of the radar gun? How
many people lost and paid the fine?
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
Face it, we have brought this upon ourselves by the actions of those
that BRAG about running multiple logbooks & running illegally.
Now this just plain pisses me off. I didn't bring a thing upon myself. I
have been cited ONCE for a logbook violation in 22 years of operating a
commercial vehicle. That one occurance was for failing to keep it current
to the last change of duty status, and it was more than 11 years ago.
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
While I
don't know if the HOS are correct as far as being totally safe &
everything, I think if they are written based upon medical & sleep
research & designed TOTALLY for Driver & Motorist safety, then we need
to accept them & follow them.
But of course. Bureaucrats, who rarely if ever have any first hand
knowledge of the things that they regulate, are absolutely right and should
be appreciated for their fine efforts. We should offer them a raise in pay.
Whoops!...They already do that for themselves.

Do you have any idea what the word "sheeple" means?
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
If you don't, then you need to get out of this business.
Thank you for the confirmation. I am already leaning in that direction, and
will be ready to hand the keys over.
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
Just because you feel you can drive longer & more
than everyone else doesn't give you th right to BREAK THE LAW. If
everyone did this, we would live in ANARACHY.
First of all, you blooming idiot, one thing has nothing to do with the
other. Your supposition that anyone that is opposed to this proposal is a
person that is opposed to it BECAUSE they support violating the law, only
proves that you are thinking with very little brain matter upstairs.

You've read my comments. If you think that this is the way to treat people,
then you live with it. I will not. I've spent two decades insuring my
future.
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
BLACK BOXES will happen & soon. All we can do is prepare for them &
make sure that the LAWS written are written fairly & properly to
protect us the best way.
Wait and see. History is not on our side for noting laws that are written
"fairly and properly" when it comes to this industry. This is just another
extension of that fact.
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
I would think OOIDA would be a MAJOR FORCE in this !!!!!
Now why would you think that? They are only involved with this industry for
the same reason everyone else is. They want to suck as much through their
straw as they can, any way they can. Unless it benefits them monetarily,
it's not worth the trouble or time.

I haven't even taken the time to find out where they stand on this issue.

~Tony~
MaxxCorp, INC.
2004-11-28 18:15:26 UTC
Permalink
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
This thread has been very interesting & amusing.
I'm touched that you find it funny.
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
I feel that the fear
that everyone has about "BLACK BOXES" is that they will be used to
stop a driver & then used to write a bunch of tickets. While I think
that anybody who continuously violates the HOS rules should be FINED &
possibly face the loss of their license if they are a rampant abuser,
I don't think this should be done by a roadside stop.
Well...It WILL be done that way, just as we are fined based upon the
logbook today.
Well if you BREAK THE LAW, then you should be punished, dont break it
& you have nothing to fear.
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
What needs to happen is when the legislation is written forcing them
on us, there is language written into it that only allows tickets &
other enforcement activities to be done from a AUDIT of the data at a
off-site location. Also there would then be avenues of appeal for
possible equipment malfunction or other possible errors.
The Federal Government turned over the vast majority of enforcing the rules
placed upon truckers years ago to the states. That will not change, and in
fact will likely even increase.
Use your noodle. What would be the benefit of placing a recording device in
a vehicle if the results will only be available with some prior notice,
demanding it be ready for inspection? No...they will want random checks
performed either at the scales, or will even equip patrol cars with reading
devices, or the device itself will print a paper record that will be
available to anyone authorized to view it. It's a complete joke to even
think that they will do otherwise.
Granted, there will be checks at Scales & from Police. But it doesnt
mean they will be allowed to just pull you over for nothing & plug in.
There is a standard called PROBABLE CAUSE. It has already be used to
defend against other improprieties such as RACE BASED STOPS. They will
have to show that they had reasonable cause to pull you over for
something I.E. Speeding or such.
Post by TurboTrucker
How many people have tried to dispute the accuracy of the radar gun? How
many people lost and paid the fine?
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
Face it, we have brought this upon ourselves by the actions of those
that BRAG about running multiple logbooks & running illegally.
Now this just plain pisses me off. I didn't bring a thing upon myself. I
have been cited ONCE for a logbook violation in 22 years of operating a
commercial vehicle. That one occurance was for failing to keep it current
to the last change of duty status, and it was more than 11 years ago.
When I say what I did it is because of a MAJORITY of vocal drivers
that have voiced that they dont run legal. I too have never had a
LOGBOOK VIOLATION & I have had 3 level-3 checks in the last 6 weeks
alone. I dont worry about Logbook problems or Weight issues as I wont
run illegal !!!! Others however dont share our same view
unfortunately.
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
While I
don't know if the HOS are correct as far as being totally safe &
everything, I think if they are written based upon medical & sleep
research & designed TOTALLY for Driver & Motorist safety, then we need
to accept them & follow them.
But of course. Bureaucrats, who rarely if ever have any first hand
knowledge of the things that they regulate, are absolutely right and should
be appreciated for their fine efforts. We should offer them a raise in pay.
Whoops!...They already do that for themselves.
Do you have any idea what the word "sheeple" means?
Not sure who you are referring to as a SHEEPLE but I too am a Rush
Limbaugh fan & have used the term for quite awhile now.
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
If you don't, then you need to get out of this business.
Thank you for the confirmation. I am already leaning in that direction, and
will be ready to hand the keys over.
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
Just because you feel you can drive longer & more
than everyone else doesn't give you th right to BREAK THE LAW. If
everyone did this, we would live in ANARACHY.
First of all, you blooming idiot, one thing has nothing to do with the
other. Your supposition that anyone that is opposed to this proposal is a
person that is opposed to it BECAUSE they support violating the law, only
proves that you are thinking with very little brain matter upstairs.
You've read my comments. If you think that this is the way to treat people,
then you live with it. I will not. I've spent two decades insuring my
future.
Well whatever you wish to believe or think is your right. However
cause of the actions of others, the Trucking Industry is going to be
forced into a BIG BROTHER type of oversight. It is inevitable. However
you appear to be like most people out here on this argument & that is
you are opposed to change of any sort. Change is inevitable, you need
to embrace it & learn how to use it for your betterment.
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
BLACK BOXES will happen & soon. All we can do is prepare for them &
make sure that the LAWS written are written fairly & properly to
protect us the best way.
Wait and see. History is not on our side for noting laws that are written
"fairly and properly" when it comes to this industry. This is just another
extension of that fact.
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
I would think OOIDA would be a MAJOR FORCE in this !!!!!
Now why would you think that? They are only involved with this industry for
the same reason everyone else is. They want to suck as much through their
straw as they can, any way they can. Unless it benefits them monetarily,
it's not worth the trouble or time.
I haven't even taken the time to find out where they stand on this issue.
~Tony~
Well their MISSION STATEMENT & PURPOSE is to support Owner/Operators
and INDEPENDENT DRIVERS. This issue is core to these groups. I am not
sure what there stand is, but I would expect they will advocate for
the BEST POSSIBLE situation that is possible.

Face it, no matter what, Black Boxes are coming. We need to embrace
that fact & work for the best circumstances & use of them. If we dont,
you will be OUT OF BUSINESS cause of TICKETS & FINES.

Also we need to realize that they may have secondary effects also. Due
to the fact that people wont be able to cheat their hours, it may
force companies to pay more per miles to get drivers to drive their
freight. Also the new HAZ-MAT rules are going to cause companies to
pay more since it is goig to cost more & be harder to get this
endorsement.
TurboTrucker
2004-11-29 07:55:08 UTC
Permalink
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
Well if you BREAK THE LAW, then you should be punished, dont break it
& you have nothing to fear.
That's a tired and worn out argument, and when it comes to the R&R's of
this industry, it is virtually IMPOSSIBLE to remain true to them 100% of
the time.
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
Granted, there will be checks at Scales & from Police. But it doesnt
mean they will be allowed to just pull you over for nothing & plug in.
You really think so? Law officers that are granted authority as "Special
Agents" of the FMCSA have that authority today. They are absolutely allowed
to do this for any reason, including a Level 1 inspection of a driver's
paperwork.
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
There is a standard called PROBABLE CAUSE. It has already be used to
defend against other improprieties such as RACE BASED STOPS. They will
have to show that they had reasonable cause to pull you over for
something I.E. Speeding or such.
It does not apply to drivers of commercial vehicles. Probable cause is not
a right we retain.
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
Not sure who you are referring to as a SHEEPLE but I too am a Rush
Limbaugh fan & have used the term for quite awhile now.
Then I am in awe. Sheeple will willingly allow their lives to be guided by
those in power, follow along with half closed eyes, and never ask the
question..."is this something that should be allowed to happen?" I'm asking
the question.
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
Well whatever you wish to believe or think is your right. However
cause of the actions of others, the Trucking Industry is going to be
forced into a BIG BROTHER type of oversight. It is inevitable. However
you appear to be like most people out here on this argument & that is
you are opposed to change of any sort. Change is inevitable, you need
to embrace it & learn how to use it for your betterment.
I'm tired of trying to explain why this is not a simple change for our
industry, but rather I am illustrating just how it could affect every last
person in this country that have nothing to do with trucking. It is a back
door effort to insinuate enforcement techniques of an intrusive magnitude
and get them established as acceptable. Once this is done, it sets up a
precedent that can then can be used to justify using similar enforcement
techniques in other ways. Once they are allowed it, there will be no
stopping it. Technology already exists to view what each and every one of
us is up to from satellites. Would you like to see your home? You can look
at it yourself.

http://terraserver.microsoft.com/
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
Well their MISSION STATEMENT & PURPOSE is to support Owner/Operators
and INDEPENDENT DRIVERS. This issue is core to these groups. I am not
sure what there stand is, but I would expect they will advocate for
the BEST POSSIBLE situation that is possible.
If they can stand to make a buck from it.
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
Face it, no matter what, Black Boxes are coming. We need to embrace
that fact & work for the best circumstances & use of them. If we dont,
you will be OUT OF BUSINESS cause of TICKETS & FINES.
NO...the box will do that quite well for just about every driver that has
their data read by someone. No one can remain compliant to the letter of
the law 100% of the time. The added side benefit of all of this, will be
the boon to the state and local Governments, and fining a group that does
not vote in great numbers. That can't lose....
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
Also we need to realize that they may have secondary effects also. Due
to the fact that people wont be able to cheat their hours, it may
force companies to pay more per miles to get drivers to drive their
freight.
Don't bet on it. You'll lose. I'm making a safer bet. I say they will not
come down the pike at all...at least not in the near future.
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
Also the new HAZ-MAT rules are going to cause companies to
pay more since it is goig to cost more & be harder to get this
endorsement.
Don't bet on that one either.

~Tony~
MaxxCorp, INC.
2004-11-29 12:54:04 UTC
Permalink
I see we have different views & opinions. And I think this is what is
GREAT about this country that we are allowed to disagree on something
& discuss it openly. While I dont claim that I am 100% correct, I also
dont believe that you will be either. I guess we will have to wait &
see cause time will tell us the answers in the end.
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
Well if you BREAK THE LAW, then you should be punished, dont break it
& you have nothing to fear.
That's a tired and worn out argument, and when it comes to the R&R's of
this industry, it is virtually IMPOSSIBLE to remain true to them 100% of
the time.
While this is probably true, I know I have gone faster than 55 in
California which is a violation of the law. I do however believe that
some rules that directly affect safety will be enforced vigourisly. I
do however also beleive that they are not going to write you up for
goin over 15 or 20 minutes. These rules are to stop the drivers who
think they can drive 18+ hours without rest.
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
Granted, there will be checks at Scales & from Police. But it doesnt
mean they will be allowed to just pull you over for nothing & plug in.
You really think so? Law officers that are granted authority as "Special
Agents" of the FMCSA have that authority today. They are absolutely allowed
to do this for any reason, including a Level 1 inspection of a driver's
paperwork.
I believe a paperwork check is a LEVEL 3. I know I have gone thru 3 of
them in the last 6 weeks and havent had a violation or anything.
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
There is a standard called PROBABLE CAUSE. It has already be used to
defend against other improprieties such as RACE BASED STOPS. They will
have to show that they had reasonable cause to pull you over for
something I.E. Speeding or such.
It does not apply to drivers of commercial vehicles. Probable cause is not
a right we retain.
I DISAGREE with you on this. The US SUPREME COURT has upheld many
cases that have overturned MAJOR CONVICTIONS cause a officer did not
have probable cause. While I know police are good at lying about
things. They will have to have some other reason than just saying " I
wanted to use my NEW TOY & write this guy some tickets"
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
Not sure who you are referring to as a SHEEPLE but I too am a Rush
Limbaugh fan & have used the term for quite awhile now.
Then I am in awe. Sheeple will willingly allow their lives to be guided by
those in power, follow along with half closed eyes, and never ask the
question..."is this something that should be allowed to happen?" I'm asking
the question.
I AGREE. And a vast MAJORITY of the people in the world are this way.
However I am not one & I believe from your responses you are definetly
not one either. And it seems a VAST MAJORITY of Truckers are not
either. We have to be able to work Independently without Supervision
99.9% of the time. We have to make DECISIONS based on GOOD JUDGEMENT
all the time. These are factors that most SHEEPEOPLE dont have.
However we have to accept some factors that we may not agree with
(I.E. Black Boxes) and learn how to use them & work with them in the
most effective way. This will include VOICING OUR OPINIONS to those in
power.
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
Well whatever you wish to believe or think is your right. However
cause of the actions of others, the Trucking Industry is going to be
forced into a BIG BROTHER type of oversight. It is inevitable. However
you appear to be like most people out here on this argument & that is
you are opposed to change of any sort. Change is inevitable, you need
to embrace it & learn how to use it for your betterment.
I'm tired of trying to explain why this is not a simple change for our
industry, but rather I am illustrating just how it could affect every last
person in this country that have nothing to do with trucking. It is a back
door effort to insinuate enforcement techniques of an intrusive magnitude
and get them established as acceptable. Once this is done, it sets up a
precedent that can then can be used to justify using similar enforcement
techniques in other ways. Once they are allowed it, there will be no
stopping it. Technology already exists to view what each and every one of
us is up to from satellites. Would you like to see your home? You can look
at it yourself.
http://terraserver.microsoft.com/
Now then it sounds like you are a CONSPIRACY NUT. Technology can be
GOOD or BAD depending on how it is used. We have to constantly FIGHT
for our FREEDOM or it will be taken away from us. I know the ACLU will
fight for anyone & everyone when CIVIL LIBERITIES are taken away or
tried to be taken away. Once again, NO ONE is saying just to sit here
& take what is shoved at us. We have to work with the FMCSA & others
to ensure it is done in the BEST POSSIBLE WAY !!!!
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
Well their MISSION STATEMENT & PURPOSE is to support Owner/Operators
and INDEPENDENT DRIVERS. This issue is core to these groups. I am not
sure what there stand is, but I would expect they will advocate for
the BEST POSSIBLE situation that is possible.
If they can stand to make a buck from it.
Sounds like you have a GRUDGE against them. However tell me of another
ADVOCACY group for DRIVERS that dont ask ofr $$$$ to support
themselves or any other advocacy group at all.
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
Face it, no matter what, Black Boxes are coming. We need to embrace
that fact & work for the best circumstances & use of them. If we dont,
you will be OUT OF BUSINESS cause of TICKETS & FINES.
NO...the box will do that quite well for just about every driver that has
their data read by someone. No one can remain compliant to the letter of
the law 100% of the time. The added side benefit of all of this, will be
the boon to the state and local Governments, and fining a group that does
not vote in great numbers. That can't lose....
You said something there at the end which is the KEY to the whole
problem....a group that does not vote in great numbers. If we want
change & such we have to take a more ACTIVE ROLE in Politics and other
such activities. Otherwise we will get run over like a deer in the
headlights......
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
Also we need to realize that they may have secondary effects also. Due
to the fact that people wont be able to cheat their hours, it may
force companies to pay more per miles to get drivers to drive their
freight.
Don't bet on it. You'll lose. I'm making a safer bet. I say they will not
come down the pike at all...at least not in the near future.
Maybe, Maybe not......Time will tell
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
Also the new HAZ-MAT rules are going to cause companies to
pay more since it is goig to cost more & be harder to get this
endorsement.
Don't bet on that one either.
See Answer Above again.....
Post by TurboTrucker
~Tony~
TurboTrucker
2004-11-29 20:00:01 UTC
Permalink
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
I see we have different views & opinions. And I think this is what is
GREAT about this country that we are allowed to disagree on something
& discuss it openly.
I absolutely agree. We all learn something when we can do this.
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
While I dont claim that I am 100% correct, I also
dont believe that you will be either. I guess we will have to wait &
see cause time will tell us the answers in the end.
No...I am not 100% correct. This issue is one that we all need to watch
carefully, and I know that I will be doing so if no one else does.
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
While this is probably true, I know I have gone faster than 55 in
California which is a violation of the law. I do however believe that
some rules that directly affect safety will be enforced vigourisly. I
do however also beleive that they are not going to write you up for
goin over 15 or 20 minutes. These rules are to stop the drivers who
think they can drive 18+ hours without rest.
And if THAT is the target, then I might be inclined to cautiously open my
mind up to them. I don't think that this will be the case though. You
see...people that drive in gross violation already avoid the scales and
checkpoints. If a device is installed that would absolutely nail them to
the wall when caught, they will just avoid them more than they do today.

It's the honest, or the mostly honest people that suffer the most when
enforcement techniques are escalated. Honest people comply with gun laws.
They turn them in. The criminals then have free reign to escalate their own
agendas.
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
I believe a paperwork check is a LEVEL 3. I know I have gone thru 3 of
them in the last 6 weeks and havent had a violation or anything.
Oops...I did make a boo boo...You're right. Sorry.
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
Post by TurboTrucker
It does not apply to drivers of commercial vehicles. Probable cause is
not a right we retain.
I DISAGREE with you on this. The US SUPREME COURT has upheld many
cases that have overturned MAJOR CONVICTIONS cause a officer did not
have probable cause. While I know police are good at lying about
things. They will have to have some other reason than just saying " I
wanted to use my NEW TOY & write this guy some tickets"
I again offer to you, that commercial vehicles are not afforded the same
protections as private motor vehicles in this regard. We have been through
this many times in this group. An officer that is empowered by the FMCSA,
and is enforcing the R&R's is allowed to detain you at any time, for a
check of your vehicle, your paperwork, and if they present you with
identification that shows that they have been granted "Special Agent"
status by the FMCSA, they can "inspect" the inside of any truck that has a
carrier's name upon it.

http://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/rulesregs/fmcsr/regs/appnb.htm
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
I AGREE. And a vast MAJORITY of the people in the world are this way.
However I am not one & I believe from your responses you are definetly
not one either. And it seems a VAST MAJORITY of Truckers are not
either. We have to be able to work Independently without Supervision
99.9% of the time. We have to make DECISIONS based on GOOD JUDGEMENT
all the time. These are factors that most SHEEPEOPLE dont have.
I'm not quite sure that we do this 99.9% of the time, but we are not the
rogues of socety either, which is why I have to pause every now and then
and question the intent of further acts of oppression, when it is not
deserved, and this is how I happen to view this issue. The industry, for as
much as it needs to continue to do so, has made leaps and bounds from where
it was, to improve our numbers in regard to safety.
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
However we have to accept some factors that we may not agree with
(I.E. Black Boxes) and learn how to use them & work with them in the
most effective way. This will include VOICING OUR OPINIONS to those in
power.
If this industry does nothing else, we need to begin to VOTE in high
numbers. We are not taken seriously because of our deficiency in that act.
Politicians and policy makers respond to VOTERS. Then our voices will be
heard. The pressure that they are responding to is coming from those that
have nothing to do with trucking, and they use skewed numbers to make their
cases. They also contribute to political parties.
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
Now then it sounds like you are a CONSPIRACY NUT.
I know that it sounds that way, because I have often said this very thing
to others, but there is a point and time when you have to take minute or tw
o to think about these things.
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
Technology can be
GOOD or BAD depending on how it is used. We have to constantly FIGHT
for our FREEDOM or it will be taken away from us. I know the ACLU will
fight for anyone & everyone when CIVIL LIBERITIES are taken away or
tried to be taken away. Once again, NO ONE is saying just to sit here
& take what is shoved at us. We have to work with the FMCSA & others
to ensure it is done in the BEST POSSIBLE WAY !!!!
The best possible way, is to make them do their jobs, just as we do. We
live under a rule of law, where people are not supposed to have to give up
evidence of crime or misdemeanor to convict themselves. They are presumed
innocent until proven guilty, and then, and only then, in a court of law.

I find that by installing monitoring devices that track each and every
movement we make, to be a gross violation of that principle and founding
rule, WHEN such a device would be used by law enforcement to make a case
against the accused.
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
Sounds like you have a GRUDGE against them. However tell me of another
ADVOCACY group for DRIVERS that dont ask ofr $$$$ to support
themselves or any other advocacy group at all.
None, and I don't have any personal grudge against OOIDA, but I understand
what their motivation is, and it's not to "help" anyone but themselves.
They take advertisement dollars for their publications from some of the
very people that need to be drummed out of this industry. They re-sell
insurance to truckers under the premise that it is a good deal and that
they are saving them hundreds of dollars, when the fact is, that truckers
can find on their own, coverage in some cases at a 50% savings. I
personally have taken the time to verify that for myself. They are acting
as used car salesmen for the insurance industry, and taking a bite out of
trucker's asses each and every month.

Their legal department is only interested in class action cases, where
their share will be bountiful and worth the effort.

Is this to say that they have not helped an individual form time to time?
No...for I know they have, but it's much like throwing scraps to the poor,
for if you did not, they's even have less membership than they suffer
presently.
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
You said something there at the end which is the KEY to the whole
problem....a group that does not vote in great numbers. If we want
change & such we have to take a more ACTIVE ROLE in Politics and other
such activities. Otherwise we will get run over like a deer in the
headlights......
Exactly. I'm tired of seeing this industry run over like those same deer.
This proposal is a test....and if it passes the test, it sets up everyone
else for the same techniques to stem misbehavior, because it will have been
established as a tool that can be used to base further uses of across the
enforcement community.

I've always had an objection with "reverse sting operations" as well, where
law enforcement creates the temptation to violate the law, by setting up
false drug buys or prostitutes on the street, just waiting for people to
come by and give in to the temptation. Those have never affected me in the
slightest, but I consider it nothing short of creating a crime and then
busting people for partaking in it.

Some people do not know this about me, but I have law enforcement in my
background and am still a certified reserve officer for the county and city
I reside in. I'm hardly biased when I offer my thoughts on this. There are
many things that I would never defend, but I can see the danger in the way
that people can think, when they want to use the power of Government to
bring about results in circumstances of misbehavior that they deem
necessary to correct.

P.S. - I apologize for my previous loss of temper and calling you a name.

~Tony~
MaxxCorp, INC.
2004-11-29 22:15:58 UTC
Permalink
This reply is going to take some time to compose. You have stated
things very nicely & very informed. I want to offer my responses in
the same way. Also I must say this conversation is very encouraging in
that it is being kept to a courteous intellectual level.
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
I see we have different views & opinions. And I think this is what is
GREAT about this country that we are allowed to disagree on something
& discuss it openly.
I absolutely agree. We all learn something when we can do this.
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
While I dont claim that I am 100% correct, I also
dont believe that you will be either. I guess we will have to wait &
see cause time will tell us the answers in the end.
No...I am not 100% correct. This issue is one that we all need to watch
carefully, and I know that I will be doing so if no one else does.
I agree & I will be watching it with you.....
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
While this is probably true, I know I have gone faster than 55 in
California which is a violation of the law. I do however believe that
some rules that directly affect safety will be enforced vigourisly. I
do however also beleive that they are not going to write you up for
goin over 15 or 20 minutes. These rules are to stop the drivers who
think they can drive 18+ hours without rest.
And if THAT is the target, then I might be inclined to cautiously open my
mind up to them. I don't think that this will be the case though. You
see...people that drive in gross violation already avoid the scales and
checkpoints. If a device is installed that would absolutely nail them to
the wall when caught, they will just avoid them more than they do today.
I think I agree with you on this. Certain People will always violate
the law no matter what you do. All you can do is make it Harder & try
to discourage them as much as possible. While this may hurt us that
follow the law, it is still necessary sometimes for the overall good.
While Black Boxes may seem intusive to some, I believe anything that
can save at least 1 life is worth it. You mention later here that you
were in Law Enforcement. Let me ask you this, have you ever had to
make the visit to tell someone that their loved one has been killed in
a accident. Anyone who has will agree that anything that can prevent
that from happening even once is worth whatever it takes.
Post by TurboTrucker
It's the honest, or the mostly honest people that suffer the most when
enforcement techniques are escalated. Honest people comply with gun laws.
They turn them in. The criminals then have free reign to escalate their own
agendas.
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
I believe a paperwork check is a LEVEL 3. I know I have gone thru 3 of
them in the last 6 weeks and havent had a violation or anything.
Oops...I did make a boo boo...You're right. Sorry.
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
Post by TurboTrucker
It does not apply to drivers of commercial vehicles. Probable cause is
not a right we retain.
I DISAGREE with you on this. The US SUPREME COURT has upheld many
cases that have overturned MAJOR CONVICTIONS cause a officer did not
have probable cause. While I know police are good at lying about
things. They will have to have some other reason than just saying " I
wanted to use my NEW TOY & write this guy some tickets"
I again offer to you, that commercial vehicles are not afforded the same
protections as private motor vehicles in this regard. We have been through
this many times in this group. An officer that is empowered by the FMCSA,
and is enforcing the R&R's is allowed to detain you at any time, for a
check of your vehicle, your paperwork, and if they present you with
identification that shows that they have been granted "Special Agent"
status by the FMCSA, they can "inspect" the inside of any truck that has a
carrier's name upon it.
http://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/rulesregs/fmcsr/regs/appnb.htm
OK, so they can & may stop a COMMERICAL VEHICLE for a records check. I
agree now that you are correct in this. However as I stated, when
whatever LAW is written, this is a area we need to voice our opinions
to the lawmakers.
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
I AGREE. And a vast MAJORITY of the people in the world are this way.
However I am not one & I believe from your responses you are definetly
not one either. And it seems a VAST MAJORITY of Truckers are not
either. We have to be able to work Independently without Supervision
99.9% of the time. We have to make DECISIONS based on GOOD JUDGEMENT
all the time. These are factors that most SHEEPEOPLE dont have.
I'm not quite sure that we do this 99.9% of the time, but we are not the
rogues of socety either, which is why I have to pause every now and then
and question the intent of further acts of oppression, when it is not
deserved, and this is how I happen to view this issue. The industry, for as
much as it needs to continue to do so, has made leaps and bounds from where
it was, to improve our numbers in regard to safety.
I agree the industry has improved Safety & is continuing to do so. I
however believe PAPER LOGS need to go away & be replaced by a more
simpler system tied to the Drivetrain & Driver.
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
However we have to accept some factors that we may not agree with
(I.E. Black Boxes) and learn how to use them & work with them in the
most effective way. This will include VOICING OUR OPINIONS to those in
power.
If this industry does nothing else, we need to begin to VOTE in high
numbers. We are not taken seriously because of our deficiency in that act.
Politicians and policy makers respond to VOTERS. Then our voices will be
heard. The pressure that they are responding to is coming from those that
have nothing to do with trucking, and they use skewed numbers to make their
cases. They also contribute to political parties.
110% in AGREEMENT. If we dont act, all we can do is whine. I am very
active politically & will always do so. I also dont just go along with
whatever everyone else says. I question & voice my opinion in
disagreement when I dont agree.......
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
Now then it sounds like you are a CONSPIRACY NUT.
I know that it sounds that way, because I have often said this very thing
to others, but there is a point and time when you have to take minute or tw
o to think about these things.
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
Technology can be
GOOD or BAD depending on how it is used. We have to constantly FIGHT
for our FREEDOM or it will be taken away from us. I know the ACLU will
fight for anyone & everyone when CIVIL LIBERITIES are taken away or
tried to be taken away. Once again, NO ONE is saying just to sit here
& take what is shoved at us. We have to work with the FMCSA & others
to ensure it is done in the BEST POSSIBLE WAY !!!!
The best possible way, is to make them do their jobs, just as we do. We
live under a rule of law, where people are not supposed to have to give up
evidence of crime or misdemeanor to convict themselves. They are presumed
innocent until proven guilty, and then, and only then, in a court of law.
110% in Agreement. However if you have worked in law enforcement then
you should have seen how it has become far harder now to prove your
innocence once you have been accused. Supposedly this has been done ti
simplify & speed up due process.....Now I am the conspiracy nut.
Post by TurboTrucker
I find that by installing monitoring devices that track each and every
movement we make, to be a gross violation of that principle and founding
rule, WHEN such a device would be used by law enforcement to make a case
against the accused.
I dont think they will be that sophisticated. I have worked on a Basic
Model on what they should & shouldnt do. Basiclly it should track who
is logged into the POWER UNIT (I.E. Tractor) and if the Transmission
is in gear. I also believe that the HOS should be changed to allow you
to Drive for 12 hours in any continous rolling 24 hour period. This
way, you can stagger your breaks or rest anyway you wish. Also if you
take a LONG LUNCH or whatever you are always gaining on getting more
time. This would allow for 84 hours driving in a 7 day period. I also
believe that all other forms of work need to be OUTLAWED for drivers
to avoid REST issues. Too many companies expect Drivers to act as
LUMPERS off the clock to save TIME & MONEY. This needs to be OUTLAWED.
Overall the CARRIERS, SHIPPERS & RECIEVERS all need to be made part of
the new HOS Rules. Outlaw or create Penalities for SHIPPERS &
RECIEVERS that cause Drivers to break the rules. Make sure CARRIERS
arent encouraging Drivers to Break the Law & if so PUNISH THEM also.
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
Sounds like you have a GRUDGE against them. However tell me of another
ADVOCACY group for DRIVERS that dont ask ofr $$$$ to support
themselves or any other advocacy group at all.
None, and I don't have any personal grudge against OOIDA, but I understand
what their motivation is, and it's not to "help" anyone but themselves.
They take advertisement dollars for their publications from some of the
very people that need to be drummed out of this industry. They re-sell
insurance to truckers under the premise that it is a good deal and that
they are saving them hundreds of dollars, when the fact is, that truckers
can find on their own, coverage in some cases at a 50% savings. I
personally have taken the time to verify that for myself. They are acting
as used car salesmen for the insurance industry, and taking a bite out of
trucker's asses each and every month.
Their legal department is only interested in class action cases, where
their share will be bountiful and worth the effort.
Is this to say that they have not helped an individual form time to time?
No...for I know they have, but it's much like throwing scraps to the poor,
for if you did not, they's even have less membership than they suffer
presently.
Well while I personally dont have first hand knowledge, I do agree
with their GENERAL PURPOSE.
Post by TurboTrucker
Post by MaxxCorp, INC.
You said something there at the end which is the KEY to the whole
problem....a group that does not vote in great numbers. If we want
change & such we have to take a more ACTIVE ROLE in Politics and other
such activities. Otherwise we will get run over like a deer in the
headlights......
Exactly. I'm tired of seeing this industry run over like those same deer.
This proposal is a test....and if it passes the test, it sets up everyone
else for the same techniques to stem misbehavior, because it will have been
established as a tool that can be used to base further uses of across the
enforcement community.
I've always had an objection with "reverse sting operations" as well, where
law enforcement creates the temptation to violate the law, by setting up
false drug buys or prostitutes on the street, just waiting for people to
come by and give in to the temptation. Those have never affected me in the
slightest, but I consider it nothing short of creating a crime and then
busting people for partaking in it.
110% in Agreement. This Reverse Sting has become too prevalient &
needs to stop.
Post by TurboTrucker
Some people do not know this about me, but I have law enforcement in my
background and am still a certified reserve officer for the county and city
I reside in. I'm hardly biased when I offer my thoughts on this. There are
many things that I would never defend, but I can see the danger in the way
that people can think, when they want to use the power of Government to
bring about results in circumstances of misbehavior that they deem
necessary to correct.
P.S. - I apologize for my previous loss of temper and calling you a name.
APOLOGY ACCEPTED & THANK YOU
Post by TurboTrucker
~Tony~
tscottme
2004-11-28 15:30:23 UTC
Permalink
Post by kc0iv
I really don't have a problem with EOBRs. I just don't think they
will do what everyone thinks they will. This whole thing is about
safety right? Well if it takes more trucks on the road to do the same
level of work then how can it be safer? Let alone that most of those
additional trucks will be driven by less skilled drivers.
It's odd Scott that you don't think a strike or work slowdown is
effective. Since that is the very action that unions have used for
years to get what they want.
kc0iv
And unions find that they can win the battle and lose the war. Even they
can't arm-wrestle the economy and win for long. As their costs increase,
their share of the market decreases. The economy will not abide anything,
for long, that isn't economically plausible. If the cost of anything is
artifically inflated by intimidation, by regulation, or whatever, a
replacement will be found. If the industry strikes, and the more total the
strike the quicker the discovery of the alternative, an alternative will be
found.
--
Scott

"Arafat remains in stable condition after dying in a Paris hospital."
Ye Olde Dave
2004-11-26 20:03:15 UTC
Permalink
Subject: Re: Electronic On-Board Recording Devices
Date: 11/24/2004 10:02 PM Easter
It's just another foot in that door....literally.
~Tony~
I find it interesting that yesterday's paper had an article on the latest
idea from Cal. on gas taxation.... the transponders in the 4-wheeler deal so
that they can be charged by mileage. The apparent violation of the 4-wheelers
rights seem so much more important to the civil-libertarians ( and, shockingly
enough,to the 4-wheelers themselves) then how EOBRs ( a more-intrusive device
then a plain old mileage calculator) will violate truck drivers rights. The
rationalization that CMV drivers can take it in the butt, rights-wise, due to
the alleged "safety" factor excuse of wanting to know how every second of every
day is spent on that truck is so bogus (in my book) as to be laughable if it
wasn't so pathetic..... and if there weren't so many of you sheep bleating the
"if you're running legal you shouldn't care" blather. All I can say to those
using that line of thinking (?) is" Up against the wall MF for a body cavity
search for drugs, weapons or other things we don't like. If you're not holding,
you shouldn't care. The how 'bout blood tests for whatever we might feel like
testing you for? Perhaps a stray bit of DNA to try to connect ya to some
unsolved crime that you were 5,000 miles away from but, what the heck, you're a
truckdriver and we can do it so spread 'em, sweet-cheeks and give us your
samples.If you (pick any that apply) :
1) weren't there,
2) weren't born yet,
3) didn't do it,
4) were told she was over 21,
5) thought you were still in the US of A, where criminals have rights but
truckdrivers don't,not the Soviet Union circa 1950.....

That don't cut it 'cause, you're a truckdriver and, using safety as the
buzzword, we'll do whatever we damned well please with ya & to ya. 'Cause if
you are covered by 1 thru 4 above, you won't have anything to worry about and
thus, shouldn't object........ or you'll rouse our suspicions about you and
maybe make us want to delve a little bit deeper into you, you redneck,
terrorist, drug-sniffing, HOS-violating, mother-raping, truck-idling inhabitant
of the Group W bench.
If you use excuse no. 5, oh well..... you know how damned confusing those
road signs are, doncha? Anyone can make a wrong turn now & then.... eh komrad?

You're never gonna believe this sir but...
When you ship it late
It'll still be late when I get it there...
tscottme
2004-11-25 05:11:29 UTC
Permalink
Post by gunslinger
Nevertheless, I am vehemently opposed to EOBR's. They are a dramatic
violation of what little privacy we have left. Trucking is already one
of the most highly ruled-and-regulated professions. Enough! Aside from
that, I see them as yet another Constitutional violation in that their
mandate would then require me to provide evidence against myself, even
if there exists no probable cause or reasonable suspicion of any
wrongdoing on my part. And I'm sorry, but just being a trucker is
neither.
IF, for example, I am running into New England on a Sunday evening,
and am getting close to my available hours, and run up on a major
traffic incident (say, a crash with 1 or more fatalities), and my
hours expire while I'm sitting parked on the highway in traffic, WHAT
the HELL am I supposed to do, if I have an EOBR??? Just sit there?
With our current log books, I will proceed at least far enough to find
safe off-highway (as in, *not* a ramp or a shoulder) parking - which
is the only sensible solution. Would that solution be available if
were using an EOBR?
Or what if one simply can't find any place *to* park, and goes over a
few minutes while trying to do so? This is pretty common in the
northeast, especially on I-81 on Sunday night when it sometimes seems
as if every damn truck in the country is heading to NYC.
Common carriers don't have an expectation of privacy with regards to
enforcement of the regulations they are already subject to. Claming that
EOBRs violate our privacy would be as silly as a drunk pilot using 5th
Amendment claim to bypass a BAC test so he can fly to Detroit. Despote what
the truck stop lawyers claim your logbook and license is subject to
examination. What is the difference between looking at your logbook and
downloading your EOBR?

With all due respect has anyone, ever, seen another driver turn off the
truck and get in the sleeper while on the road because they are out of
hours? This sounds more like the joke that explains the long truck skid
marks you see on the roads as being due to a JB Hunt driver running out of
hours. The regs already allow you to operate 2 additional hours due to
unforecast conditions. It's funny to me that there might be drivers willing
to park in the road due to being out of hours, I wonder if they are the
drivers that are running 2 logbooks and a radar detector right now? Does
anyone think that the drivers that now lie on their logbook will be
instantly transformed into robotic HOS zombies by EOBRs?

What many drivers mean when they say they can't find a place to park is that
all the pull-thru spaces and the last available 27 spots at the end of the
last fuel pump are already full. In all my years OTR, I had to leave a
truck stop twice because it didn't have a single parking spot available. As
some genius explained to me one night while I was cirlcing the lot at "The
Tennessean" (I-24 exit 22) looking for a spot to park and finding it very
tough since everyone was parking illegally rather than in the few legal
spots was "driver, I drove a thousand miles today and I'm not worried if you
can get around me or not."
--
Scott

"Arafat remains in stable condition after dying in a Paris hospital."
kc0iv
2004-11-25 13:48:52 UTC
Permalink
Post by tscottme
Post by gunslinger
Nevertheless, I am vehemently opposed to EOBR's. They are a dramatic
violation of what little privacy we have left. Trucking is already one
of the most highly ruled-and-regulated professions. Enough! Aside from
that, I see them as yet another Constitutional violation in that their
mandate would then require me to provide evidence against myself, even
if there exists no probable cause or reasonable suspicion of any
wrongdoing on my part. And I'm sorry, but just being a trucker is
neither.
IF, for example, I am running into New England on a Sunday evening,
and am getting close to my available hours, and run up on a major
traffic incident (say, a crash with 1 or more fatalities), and my
hours expire while I'm sitting parked on the highway in traffic, WHAT
the HELL am I supposed to do, if I have an EOBR??? Just sit there?
With our current log books, I will proceed at least far enough to find
safe off-highway (as in, *not* a ramp or a shoulder) parking - which
is the only sensible solution. Would that solution be available if
were using an EOBR?
Or what if one simply can't find any place *to* park, and goes over a
few minutes while trying to do so? This is pretty common in the
northeast, especially on I-81 on Sunday night when it sometimes seems
as if every damn truck in the country is heading to NYC.
Common carriers don't have an expectation of privacy with regards to
enforcement of the regulations they are already subject to. Claming that
EOBRs violate our privacy would be as silly as a drunk pilot using 5th
Amendment claim to bypass a BAC test so he can fly to Detroit. Despote what
the truck stop lawyers claim your logbook and license is subject to
examination. What is the difference between looking at your logbook and
downloading your EOBR?
With all due respect has anyone, ever, seen another driver turn off the
truck and get in the sleeper while on the road because they are out of
hours? This sounds more like the joke that explains the long truck skid
marks you see on the roads as being due to a JB Hunt driver running out of
hours. The regs already allow you to operate 2 additional hours due to
unforecast conditions. It's funny to me that there might be drivers willing
to park in the road due to being out of hours, I wonder if they are the
drivers that are running 2 logbooks and a radar detector right now? Does
anyone think that the drivers that now lie on their logbook will be
instantly transformed into robotic HOS zombies by EOBRs?
What many drivers mean when they say they can't find a place to park is that
all the pull-thru spaces and the last available 27 spots at the end of the
last fuel pump are already full. In all my years OTR, I had to leave a
truck stop twice because it didn't have a single parking spot available. As
some genius explained to me one night while I was cirlcing the lot at "The
Tennessean" (I-24 exit 22) looking for a spot to park and finding it very
tough since everyone was parking illegally rather than in the few legal
spots was "driver, I drove a thousand miles today and I'm not worried if you
can get around me or not."
Scott alot has to do with when and where you are as to having parking.
I had to drive clear across KY trying to find a parking spot once.
East of the Mississippi River parking is a problem. And some of the
spots you talk about I wouldn't park in due to the good chance of
getting a broken fender.

Then try some of the bigger cities. Many of the places I go in these
cities don't have enough parking for the number of trucks with early
morning deliveries. So you either lose a couple of hours of driving
the day before and quit a couple of hours outside the city and in
addition lose those same couple of hours again on delivery day because
of the 14 hour rule. So the net effect is reduced miles driven. Let
alone having to go into the city during morning rush hour traffic.

As I said in another post EOBR are not the answer. It's going to be a
"feel good" approach but not the real answer. EOBR will be beat by
those that want to operate illegal. It might take a couple of months
but units will be available that will be able to either reprogram the
data contained in the EOBR or a second unit will be operated.

kc0iv
Mark Bowron
2004-11-28 14:51:32 UTC
Permalink
...In all my years OTR, I had to leave a
truck stop twice because it didn't have a single parking spot available.
You must have a compactible rig or something. Just last night I did
the standard tour of the Clark at exit 257 on I-55 before continuing
on to Aurora. There I found a nice little row of angle-parked
trailers to park in, just after you cross the river on US 30 heading
west.
SLW TRK
2004-11-26 20:39:11 UTC
Permalink
Tony wrote;
<snip>
Post by TurboTrucker
The proposal to use these devices as a means
of enforcing HOS rules is also new ground, for I
cannot think of any industry or group that would
be held to this strict a standard, as a means to
monitor their day to day activities for
enforcement purposes.
No Tony, this has been on the table for at least
twenty years.

Why do you think Werner, Frito Lay and some others went to paperless
logs?

__
Nick
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