Bus and truck drivers will have to log hours electronically

Montreal, February 19 (CINEWS): After years of study, the federal government says it’s working to implement new safety regulations that are aligned with U.S. efforts to tackle fatigue among truck and bus drivers. Drivers would be required to electronically record their hours on the road, says Transport Canada, marking a change from the mandatory paper logs that have been in use since the 1930s.electronic logs
“Transport Canada believes that any compliance date should be operationally feasible and aligned, to the fullest extent possible, with the date that the U.S. rules will come into force,” spokeswoman Natasha Gauthier said in an email, but she added there’s been no commitment on timing.
Those American regulations are due to come into force in late 2017.
The regulations would cover cross-border and interprovincial travel, Gauthier added.
“The technical specifications and standards for electronic logging device (ELD) technology may differ slightly between the U.S. and Canada, but should not be necessarily inconsistent,” she said.
If and when implemented, commercial truck and bus drivers would be required to record their hours behind the wheel with devices that automatically record driving time by monitoring engine hours, vehicle movement, kilometres driven and location information.
The devices are estimated by the U.S. Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration to annually save US$1 billion in administrative costs, about 26 lives and prevent 562 injuries. Similar Canadian figures weren’t available.
The units also make it easier for provincial officials monitoring compliance and would address concerns that handwritten forms could be doctored.
The Canadian Trucking Alliance says the move towards electronic logs will bring the industry into the 21st century.
The devices, which cost an average of a couple of thousand dollars depending on type of unit, track hours on the road and rest periods to help companies to better manage their fleet.
Truckers and bus drivers are currently allowed to be behind the wheel for up to 13 hours in a day but must be off-duty for 10 hours, eight of which must be consecutive.
In addition to reducing fatigue, the devices and anti-harassment provisions in the U.S. regulations protect workers from being forced by companies facing driver shortages to work longer hours, he said.
It is a known fact in truck driving circles that many truck drivers routinely end up driving longer than the stipulated number of hours by doctoring timesheets. Now things will be different and some experts are already warning that the true cost of enforcing time truck drivers can spend on the road will be felt at the grocery store. Cost of transportation goods could rise.

Related Posts

Leave a Reply