Letter to House Small Business Committee about Long Overdue ELD Rule

    • November 29, 2017
    150 150 Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety

    November 28, 2017

     

    The Honorable Steve Chabot, Chair

    The Honorable Nydia Velazquez, Ranking Member

    U.S. House of Representatives

    Committee on Small Business

    Washington, D.C.  20515

     

    Dear Chairman Chabot and Ranking Member Velazquez:

    As you prepare for tomorrow’s hearing, “Highway to Headache: Federal Regulations on the Small Trucking Industry,” our public health, safety and law enforcement organizations, trucking companies, truck drivers, families of loved ones killed in truck crashes and truck crash survivors write to express our staunch opposition to any attempts to delay, create special interest exemptions from, or impede full implementation of the long overdue electronic logging device (ELD) rule.

    The rule requires most commercial motor vehicles (CMVs), namely large trucks and buses in interstate commerce, to install an ELD to track driver on-duty time by December 18, 2017.  The regulation was required in bipartisan legislation, the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP-21, P.L. 112-141), enacted in 2012.  Subsequently, the regulation was issued by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) in 2015.

    Truck driver fatigue has been a well-documented safety problem in the industry for decades. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has repeatedly cited fatigue as a major contributor to truck crashes and included reducing fatigue-related crashes in its 2017/2018 “Most Wanted List” of safety changes. ELDs are a proven and cost-effective technology that will save lives and reduce injuries, and according to the U.S. Department of Transportation will result in over $1 billion in annualized net benefits. Additionally, ELDs provide an objective record of a CMV driver’s on-duty time, will increase compliance with hours of service (HOS) rules, and will simplify and streamline the efforts of law enforcement.

    There already is widespread use of ELD technology in the United States and other countries. Nearly a third of trucks currently in service are equipped with electronic logging technology. Similar technology has been used in Europe for decades and is required in the European Union, Japan, and many other countries. Members of the trucking industry have known about this rule for years and have had ample time to prepare for it.

    Moreover, the legal challenge to the final rule was unanimously rejected by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit in 2016. The three judge panel denied each and every claim brought by the parties that sought to vacate the rule.  In addition, the request to the U.S. Supreme Court to review the Seventh Circuit’s ruling was denied.

    Truck crash deaths and injuries are on the rise.  In 2016, 4,317 people were killed in crashes involving large trucks, representing an increase of more than five percent from the previous year and the highest number of fatalities since 2007.  Additionally, in 2015, the most recent year for which complete data is available, an estimated 116,000 people were injured in crashes involving large trucks.

    We urge the Committee to oppose any weakening of this overdue, commonsense truck safety regulation.  Delaying, deferring or carving out exemptions to the ELD requirement will only contribute to more fatigued commercial drivers sharing the road with families and jeopardizing everyone’s safety.

    Sincerely,

    Joan Claybrook, Chair

    Citizens for Reliable and Safe Highways and,

    Former Administrator, NHTSA

     

    James P. Hoffa, General President

    International Brotherhood of Teamsters

     

    Jacqueline Gillan, President

    Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety

     

    Lane Kidd, Managing Director

    Alliance for Driver Safety & Security

    (The Trucking Alliance)

     

    John Risch, National Legislative Director

    SMART-TD (UTU)

     

    Dominick L. Stokes,

    Vice President for Legislative Affairs

    Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association

     

    Deborah A.P. Hersman, President and CEO

    National Safety Council

     

    Stephen W. Hargarten, M.D., MPH

    Society for the Advancement of Violence

    and Injury Research

     

    Steve Owings, Co-Founder

    Road Safe America

     

    Jason Levine, Executive Director

    Center for Auto Safety

     

    Andrew McGuire, Executive Director

    Trauma Foundation

     

    Janette Fennell, Founder and President

    KidsAndCars.org

     

    Jack Gillis, Director of Public Affairs

    Consumer Federation of America

     

    Daphne Izer, Founder

    Parents Against Tired Truckers (PATT)

    Amy Fletcher

    Perrysburg, OH

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Wife of John Fletcher

    Killed in a truck crash 1/24/12

     

    Kim Telep

    Harrisburg, PA

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Wife of Bradley Telep

    Killed in a truck crash 8/29/12

     

    Marchelle Wood

    Falls Church, VA

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Mother of Dana Wood

    Killed in a truck crash 10/15/02

     

    Lisa Shrum

    Fayette, MO

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Daughter of Virginia Baker, Step-daughter of Randy Baker

    Killed in a truck crash 10/10/06

     

    Tami Friedrich Trakh

    Corona, CA

    Board Member, CRASH

    Sister of Kris Mercurio, Sister-in-Law of Alan Mercurio, Aunt of Brandie Rooker & Anthony Mercurio

    Killed in a truck crash 12/27/89

     

    Kate Brown

    Gurnee, IL

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Mother of Graham Brown

    Injured in a truck crash 5/2/05

     

    Tina Silva

    Ontario, CA

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Sister of Kris Mercurio, Sister-in-Law of Alan Mercurio, Aunt of Brandie Rooker & Anthony Mercurio

    Killed in a truck crash 12/27/89

     

    Jackie Novak

    Hendersonville, NC

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Mother of Charles “Chuck” Novak

    Killed in a truck crash 10/24/10

     

    Michelle Lemus

    Los Angeles, CA

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Injured in a truck crash 4/10/14

     

    Santiago Calderon

    Arcata, CA

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Injured in a truck crash 4/10/14

     

    Dawn King

    Davisburg, MI

    President, Truck Safety Coalition (TSC)

    Board Member, Citizens for Reliable and Safe Highways (CRASH)

    Daughter of Bill Badger

    Killed in truck crash 12/23/04

     

    Linda Wilburn

    Weatherford, OK

    Board Member, PATT

    Mother of Orbie Wilburn

    Killed in a truck crash 9/2/02

     

    Larry Liberatore

    Severn, MD

    Board Member, PATT

    Father of Nick Liberatore

    Killed in a truck crash 6/9/97

     

    Wanda Lindsay

    New Braunfels, TX

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Wife of John Lindsay

    Killed in a truck crash 5/7/10

     

    Beth Badger

    Columbus, GA

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Daughter of Bill Badger

    Killed in truck crash 12/23/04

     

    Nancy Meuleners

    Bloomington, MN

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Injured in a truck crash 12/19/89

     

    Debra Cruz

    Harlingen, TX

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Injured in a truck crash 8/8/08

     

    Laurie Higginbotham

    Memphis, TN

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Mother of Michael Higginbotham

    Killed in a truck crash, 11/18/14

     

    Vickie Johnson

    Hartwell, GA

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Wife of Curt Johnson, Step-mother of Crystal Johnson

    Killed in a truck crash 10/1/09

     

    Randall Higginbotham

    Memphis, TN

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Father of Michael Higginbotham

    Killed in a truck crash, 11/18/14

     

    Bruce King

    Davisburg, MI

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Son-in-law of Bill Badger

    Killed in truck crash 12/23/04

     

    Marc Johnson

    Hartwell, GA

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Brother of Curt Johnson

    Killed in truck crash 10/1/09

     

    Melissa Gouge

    Washington, D.C.

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Cousin of Amy Corbin

    Killed in a truck crash 8/18/97

     

    Morgan Lake

    Sunderland, MD

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Injured in a truck crash 7/19/13

    Peter Malarczyk

    Hastings-on-Hudson, NY

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Injured in a truck crash 12/29/15

    Son of Ryszard and Anita Malarczyk

    Killed in a truck crash 12/29/15

     

     

     

     

     

    Monica Malarczyk

    Hastings-on-Hudson, NY

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Injured in a truck crash 12/29/15

    Son of Ryszard and Anita Malarczyk

    Killed in a truck crash 12/29/15

     

    Alan Dana

    Plattsburgh, NY

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Son of Janet Dana, Uncle of Caitlyn & Lauryn Dana, Brother-in-law of Laurie Dana

    Killed in a truck crash 7/19/12

     

    Michelle Novak

    Delevan, NY

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Aunt of Charles “Chuck” Novak

    Killed in a truck crash 10/24/10

     

    Jane Mathis

    St. Augustine, FL

    Vice President, TSC

    Board Member, PATT

    Mother of David Mathis

    Mother-in-Law of Mary Kathryn Mathis

    Killed in a truck crash 3/25/04

     

    Frank Wood

    Falls Church, VA

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Father of Dana Wood

    Killed in a truck crash 10/15/02

     

    Sandra Lance

    Chesterfield, VA

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Mother of Kristen Belair

    Killed in a truck crash 8/26/09

     

    Jennifer Tierney

    Kernersville, NC

    Board Member, CRASH

    Daughter of James Mooney

    Killed in a truck crash 9/20/83

     

    Paul Badger

    Davidson, NC

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Son of Bill Badger

    Killed in truck crash 12/23/04

     

    Bernadette Fox

    Davis, CA

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Best friend of Daniel McGuire

    Killed in a truck crash 7/10/14

     

    John Ramsey

    Edneyville, NC

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

     

    Henry Steck

    Homer, NY

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

     

    Ed Slattery

    Lutherville, MD

    Board Member, PATT

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Husband of Susan Slattery

    Killed in a truck crash 8/16/10

    Sons Matthew & Peter Slattery critically injured in a truck crash 8/16/10

     

    Ron Wood

    Washington, D.C.

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Son of Betsy Wood, Brother of Lisa Wood Martin, Uncle of Chance, Brock, and Reid Martin

    Killed in a truck crash 9/20/04

     

    Gary Wilburn

    Weatherford, OK

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Father of Orbie Wilburn

    Killed in a truck crash 9/2/02

     

     

     

     

    Christina Mahaney

    Jackman, ME

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Injured in a truck crash 7/19/11

    Mother of Liam Mahaney

    Killed in a truck crash 7/19/11

     

    Julie Branon Magnan

    South Burlington, VT

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Injured in a truck crash 01/31/02

    Wife of David Magnan

    Killed in a truck crash 01/31/02

     

    Cindy Southern

    Cleveland, TN

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Wife of James Whitaker, sister-in-law Anthony Hixon and aunt of Amber Hixon

    Killed in a truck crash 9/18/09

     

    Steve Izer

    Lisbon, ME

    Board Member, PATT

    Father of Jeff Izer

    Killed in a truck crash 10/10/93

     

    Warren Huffman

    Odessa, MI

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Brother of Tim Huffman

    Killed in a truck crash 5/6/13

     

    Tammy Huffman

    Odessa, MI

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Sister-in-law of Tim Huffman

    Killed in a truck crash 5/6/13

     

    Ashley McMillan

    Memphis, TN

    Volunteer, Truck Safety Coalition

    Girlfriend of Michael Higginbotham

    Killed in a truck crash 11/18/14