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Fuel for Thought

Change Is Constant

By Greg Huggins
Posted Jul 8th 2017 1:48PM

A lot of changes have taken place lately, or will soon, for the trucking industry. Of course, even when no major changes are looming on the horizon for truckers, they can usually find something about the industry that they do not like, and are more then happy to voice their opinions on the matter to anyone who will listen.

The upcoming deadline for ELD compliance is a hot button issue for many of today’s drivers. Over the past couple of years, drivers have been looking for the loopholes to this mandate, even going to the extreme of purchasing older equipment to be exempt from the ELD mandate, even if for a short while. Fact is, while older equipment may exempt you from the mandate, it does not exempt you from the policies of a carrier that you might be leased on with. This leads many drivers to believe their Constitutional Rights are being trampled on by the carriers who “have no right” to impose such rules, as the driver cites that his/her equipment conforms to the law as it is written. While the driver is correct about being legal, the carrier also has the right to impose any policies they feel beneficial to them, and if you contractually agree to lease with that carrier, you agree to abide by certain policies of that carrier, even if they are more strict than the law it relates to. Take it or leave, or get your own authority, customer base, sales staff, accounting department, safety department, legal department, etc.

Another big topic lately is whether drivers can carry firearms in their truck. Again, there is no simple answer. There are many factors involved. Not the least of which, whether the driver has the permits for ALL the states he or she will carry a firearm into, as well as their carrier’s policy regarding firearms. If you plan to carry a firearm in your truck, make sure you KNOW the laws regarding it, how and when to use it properly and with the proper permit(s). Just carrying a weapon does not make you safer unless you know how to use it properly.

Whether or not you accept laws or mandates, if you lease on with a carrier, they might have policies you disagree with. Make sure you understand your contract Before you sign it.

As for the ELD mandate, if your carrier has more strict rules about it than the mandate itself, it is up to you to decide whether you can comply or not. When December 18, 2017 comes and you are not prepared for it, you only have yourself to blame.


See you down the road,


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