US trucking industry is always balancing between the good and the bad, the challenges and new achievements. And while the first indications showed us that 2020 might be a challenging year for both truck drivers and the US trucking industry, it is always important to remain positive and optimistic. And it seems that towards the end of the first month of the year this is the trend that’s happening. Let’s welcome the positivity boost for the US trucking industry and truck drivers in 4 easy steps!
We simply have to start with California’s AB5 law and how truck drivers achieved major victory recently. The controversial law received heavy criticism due to its threats to more than 70,000 truckers by reclassifying them as employees of minimum wage rather than self-employed independent contractors.
The law received an opposition from California Trucking Association which filled out a federal lawsuit in its efforts to stop the law.
And on January 16, a federal judge halted the procedure of the law indefinitely until further notice which could extend for months or even years while the battle for AB5 will continue in court.
According to various reports, the US manufacturing sector as a whole has been struggling for some time which affects shippers and motor carriers. But recent Federal Reserve Data shows us a 0.2% increase in output by US manufacturers.
This is one of the first signs of recovery, and no one else should be happier than shippers, carriers and the US trucking industry as a whole.
More shipping means more selling for shippers which results in higher trucking rates and benefits for truck drivers. The hope for upside this year and growth in US commerce is real.
The survey which was conducted in the last quarter of 2019 has been seen to show optimism among shippers for the future.
The most optimistic ones were LTL (less-than-truckload) respondents with an expectancy of expansion and growth due to e-commerce sales.
When it comes to trucking, it was a more modest vote and actually indicated that many are expecting volume growth to slow down. However, the intermodal competitiveness improvement is expected to increase, and more than 50% of voters expect truckload growth moving towards the future in the US trucking industry.
Despite all the challenges that await, the optimistic approach was emphasized during the Highway Transportation Session at NITL 2020 Summit.
Hundreds of executives and professionals from the US trucking industry and transportation sector came together to discuss a variety of topics and challenges like truck parking, driver retention, contract rates and much more.
The tone throughout the conference was always positive, and it always highlighted what needs to be done for improvement and how to step up the game in various areas within the industry. Let’s see what 2020 has in store for all of us!poladminJanuary 6, 20203:34 pmELD is in Full Effect in the US Trucking Industry – What Is It Exactly?
Back in 2012, the US Congress authorized the “Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century” bill which is also known as MAP-21. Alongside the plans for highway funding included in the law, it also required to develop a rule mandating the usage of electronic logging devices (ELD). The ELD rule officially became a law on Feb. 16, 2016. For vehicles equipped with an AORBD, these had to be upgraded or replaced to meet full ELD status by Dec. 16, 2019. It has seen quite a lot of controversy over the years, but now that ELD is in full effect in the US trucking industry, let’s get to know and understand it better!
ELD devices are designed to record the data that showcases a number of hours driver works and rests each day to make sure they are compliant with government regulations. The driver information that mainly concerns hours of service that commercial truckers are restricted to is placed on a permanent record of driving hours, on-duty hours and rest time, over the course of a trip.
Originally, it was the paper logbooks that were used which then got replaced by an Automatic On-Board Recording Device (AOBRD).
Today, the ELD is a replacement for both, that is now passed its deadline and is fully implemented throughout the US trucking industry.
So, how does the ELD work? First, the application software is installed either on a portable device like a phone and tablet or on a hard-wired in-cab dash-mounted device.
Then, the ELD synchronizes with the engine of the vehicle which allows for an automatic recording of duty status once the ignition is turned on. The device starts recording the driving time when the truck speed goes over 5mph.
Once the vehicle stops, the status can be changed to non-driving or on-duty depending on the driver’s actions taken next, whether he is fueling, loading, unloading or taking a break and sleeping.
The introduction of ELDs into the US Trucking Industry was led by multiple reasons that raised concerns and needed solutions. When the driver becomes tired and sleepy, it causes major accidents and draws great attention from media and lawmakers.
Wanting to ensure the drivers don’t exceed restricted driving hours and questioning the accuracy of paper logs were one of the main reasons that led to introducing ELD.
In general, the safer work environment for drivers, faster and more accurate tracking, managing and shared data is the aim of ELD to excel at.
Rarely comes an innovation without some kind of issues and challenges. And ELD has already experienced it multiple times. From online anti-ELD petitions to being upheld in court for driver privacy concerns to software malfunction – that’s just a small part of a bigger issue picture that still goes on.
However, while the ELD still needs great improvements and solutions, the benefits of it can’t be overlooked either. Whether its more miles on the road that leads to more money, better communication with a home office or simply reduced headache from paperwork and beyond.
The US trucking industry, truck drivers and ELD still have a long way to go to form a trustworthy bond, and it all starts now!