FMCSA Wants Electronic Onboard Recorders

Posted By The Carlson Law Firm || 28-Sep-2012

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has proposed a new mandate requiring nearly all interstate commercial truckers to use electronic onboard records (EOBRs). EOBRs monitor the hours drivers are behind the wheel (also referred to as hours of service or HOS). Drivers who violate HOS rules may be in danger of falling asleep behind the wheel and causing truck accidents.

The Department of Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood explains the rationale behind the proposal, “We are committed to cracking down on carriers and drivers who put people on our roads and highways at risk.”

The current law says that drivers who violate HOS rules ten percent of the time or more are required to have an EOBR installed in their vehicle. This rule is expected to take effect on June 4, 2012. So far, it affects only 5,700 interstate carriers. The FMCSA’s proposal would expand this mandate to about 500,000 carriers. The proposal would require these additional carriers to have recording devices installed as well as provide proper documentation to prove their compliance with the HOS rule.

The consequences for violation include fines of up to $11,000. A driver’s refusal to cooperate with the system also affects that driver’s fitness rating.

The roads are dangerous enough without the added dangers of overworked commercial truck and bus drivers. Strengthening HOS rules has the potential to prevent motor vehicle accidents and make the roads safer for all motorists.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a truck or bus accident contact an experienced motor vehicle accident attorney.

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