Industry, advocacy groups press Congress for ELD mandate

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In a letter sent to members of the House and Senate currently negotiating the highway bill in conference, several industry and advocacy groups, urged the retention of the Senate’s proposed mandate for electronic logging devices.

“The National Transportation Safety Board has repeatedly recommended to the DOT that all trucks and buses be equipped with [electronic logs] as an effective strategy to improve the accuracy of carrier [hours-of-service] records,” the letter stated. “In fact, in 2010-2011, the NTSB included this recommendation on the agency’s ‘Most Wanted List’ of transportation safety improvements.”

In addition to American Trucking Associations President and CEO Bill Graves, the letter was signed by representatives of Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety, the Alliance for Driver Safety and Security, the Arkansas Trucking Association, the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance and the Truck Safety Coalition.

“ATA believes that this technology can be beneficial to our industry by encouraging compliance with the hours-of-service rules,” Graves said. “That increased compliance translates into safer highways – not just for the thousands of professional truck drivers on the road each day, but for every American who travels our highways.”

The groups also urged the House-Senate conferees to dismiss claims by opponents of an electronic logging mandate that the devices would impose a costly regulatory burden on the trucking industry, saying they “believe the cost of [electronic logging devices] is being overstated by at least one organization opposed to [a mandate].”

“The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has estimated the annualized cost to be between $525 and $785 per truck over a 10-year period,” the letter said. “This is a reasonable cost to help improve compliance with and enforcement of important truck safety rules.”