Although the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is proposing two separate incentives to encourage motor carriers to install electronic onboard recorders, the agency has asked for additional perks it could offer that could improve productivity without reducing safety or impairing driver health. For example, FMCSA is asking for evidence that could support granting more scheduling flexibility related to the 14-hour rule or use of the sleeper berth to satisfy off-duty minimums.
In comments on FMCSA’s supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking, motor carriers frequently suggested that tax incentives and the shielding of EOBR data from crash litigation would be desirable incentives. In both cases, however, federal legislation would be required, so those incentives are beyond the scope of a rulemaking absent further action by Congress.
The two incentives FMCSA is proposing if carriers voluntarily adopt EOBRs are use of random sampling of hours-of-service records for the purpose of establishing the carrier’s safety fitness rating and relief from supporting documents requirements except for those documents needed to verify on-duty not-driving activities and off-duty status.
For a copy of the notice of proposed rulemaking and various related documents, go to http://dms.dot.gov/search and search Docket No. 18940. Select “Reverse Order” for most recent documents.