Some big news today, as I read that the FMCSA is working on a plan, that will require companies to equip all trucks in their fleet with Electronic On Board Recorders (EOBRs, or Black Box).  This plan will go into effect on June 1st, 2012.

The EOBRs will only be required by the FMCSA if the carrier violates the H.O.S. rules more than 10 percent of the time.  It is believed that carriers that frequently violate H.O.S. rules have a much higher risk of causing a crash.  Along with CSA 2010, the FMCSA will use this to crack down on unsafe drivers, and carriers.

I know that most of you have very strong opinions about this issue.  I expect the comment section to be hopping today.  Keep in mind that I do not know how this plan is going to effect us as an Owner-Operator company, or you as an Owner-Operator. The big question would first be, where do O/O’s find the money to put an EOBR in their truck?  As soon as we can gather some more info, we will update you all.  Stay safe, and go Mercer!

Here are some related links:

  1. big ron
    April 5, 2010 at 8:44 am

    you know this is another example of the govt. stepping into our lives as drivers, businessmen, or whatever you are out there, how the hell are we supposed to pay 5k plus for these systems and then the monthly service charges that go along with them…i just dont understand this crap, we are already working for less than minimum wage rates for the most part, sometimes u get a good load but for the most part they are cheap and heavy, and you make little or no money, again folks, we all need to step up and voice are concerns, myself i run legal, safe, and by the book, so i could care less if they put a eobr in my truck, ive got nothing to hide, BUT what about the considerable cost! and im sure if you dont have one they will shut you down..jason please keep us advised on this as it develops, as i know you will

    everyone have a safe and happy week!

  2. Dan & Jane Danger
    April 5, 2010 at 10:52 am

    Great comment BR. If everyone would run safe, and more important-Legal; it never would of come to this. The day of the truckin outlaw cowboy is over. Some drivers think it’s still cool to brag how they run ’round the scales, can drive 1000 miles overnight after waiting hours to load and throwing a 48by8 tarp, run 2 or more log books, ect. They are the ones that brought this on.

  3. Len Dunman
    April 5, 2010 at 12:49 pm

    The Dangers’ have summed it up in a nutshell. As an industry we are our own worst enemy. Every time someone gets an hours of service violation write up they have added statistical fuel to the fire for EOBRs. They have also moved their carrier one step closer to being forced to have them.

    Fortunately, most of our folks are beginning to figure that out. Our Log Probation list (OOS log violation and/or citation) list has shrunk dramatically, 26 drivers out of 1889 or so qualified (1.37%). It needs to be zero, as does non-OOS write ups. I predict in the near future there will be no log probation list, because those things will be deal breakers as far as Mercer will be concerned. Just a hint. That’s where I see things going with this.

  4. patrick wireman
    April 5, 2010 at 4:24 pm

    i also understand that the ‘10%’ process WILL NOT be a random selection of the entire fleet but will be hand selected by auditors beginning with drivers involved in crashes, next will be hos violations and ending with speeding violations until the auditors get the required amont of drivers files to audit. i really dont see how this can be a fair ‘snapshot’ of a carriers safety health. if a company has 1000 drivers and 100 of them have had ANY of the above 3 issues and the ENTIRE company is judged by this…wtf???? that leaves 900 drivers that are compliant but the company has a bad rap. wheres is the fairness in this bull$hit? it needs to be a random drawing of drivers files as all 1000 make up the company, not 100 and yes, everybody makes mistakes, its just not a mistake until your caught. lol

  5. Milt O'Neill
    April 5, 2010 at 5:30 pm

    Sorry to say tis won’t go away, laywers and rice bowls for the federal/state workers. Will this like csa 2010 really affect the true safety rating of our industry that has one of the best ratings already, in reality, probably not. Will these two programs add a large cost increase to the fleet, oh yeah! As owner operators, since deregulation, we are along for the ride, unless we [this means every operator] get on you letter writting horse, visit your reps [state and federal]. Get your federal reps to ride in your truck [with Mercers permission] and see what it is really like dodging traffic,etc. The unfortunate side of this story is BIG MONEY talks,ie insurance companies, high visabilities, ie MADD, get the headlines: NOT YOUR TRUCK OR YOUR INCOME. When the shelfs start to get bare, fuel lines get long because of non delivery, will action be taken. So the question needs to be asked: When will we start to reduce the Miles per day for a load, Doing 500 miles on your load day in low speed limit states or large cities that have heavy construction/low speed limits only forces the contractor to Run.

  6. April 7, 2010 at 9:04 am

    Jason I see the post on the black box. Yes one question would be where we would get the money for it, and how does it effect us? But if we keep our percent down on h.o.s. volations we won’t have to worry about it. I vote for that. I don’t know if I can find anymore room for another box. thanks

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