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Happy New Year! – Arnold Safety Blog

Happy New Year!

Well, it’s been forever since I’ve posted anything, so I thought I would put something up, just to let the Internet know I have not died. In years past, I would make a New Year’s resolution to post more on the blog, and keep it current, and then fail to keep that resolution. This year I’m not even going to make that resolution, so the chances of getting lots of FMCSA-regulatory material is really not good. I’ll do my best.

I had a long, scathing post written about FMCSA’s new Administrator, Raymond P. Martinez, and then I didn’t post it. The gist of it was, this guy has 2 DUI convictions on his record around 30 years ago. I know it was 30 years ago, but jeeeeeeez, out of all the thousands and thousands of lawyers and politicians out there, you’d think they could find one for a top safety position without 2 DUI convictions. Maybe not. At any rate, it was a long time ago, I’m sure Mr. Martinez is no longer a threat to highway safety, and we hope he will have a more common sense approach to regulating the industry than his predecessors.

ELDs are now required, except for the local drivers and the pre-2000 engines. And towaway operations, in some cases. And rent-a-trucks, in some cases. And probably a hundred other little exceptions and carve-outs. At some point, I hope the FMCSA writes all these exceptions down in 49 CFR Part 395, so we all can keep track of them.

It’s probably too soon to determine how this is affecting the industry. As I have said repeatedly, my biggest fear with the ELDs is once everyone becomes familiar with them, the FMCSA will start fining carriers for being over hours by minutes, rather than hours. I have also said repeatedly the ELDs will not make the highways safer. I hope I’m wrong. I doubt I am. At any rate, ELD tickets won’t put you OOS, or affect your CSA record until at least April 1, 2018.


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