Proposal for Logging Trucking Hours Electronically

For decades now, truck drivers and over-the-road haulers have been required by both the government and their employers to keep track of the times they are out on the road driving. In the past, drivers kept track of their hours by simply writing down their times in handwritten log books. This old method of keeping time opened the door to frequent fraud and misrepresentation of the actual times they were driving their rigs. With the current laws being proposed to take effect in 2016, however, drivers no longer will be able to submit handwritten records, but rather be required to keep electronic time logs while they are driving.

These electronic logs benefit both the public and the drivers themselves. Drivers may wonder how electronically keeping tabs of their times could possibly benefit them. In fact, this new way of documenting their hours should cut down on the possibility of their employers harassing them to drive past their time limits. With handwritten logs, drivers could easily falsify their times, even if doing so was against their principles. When an employer threatened a driver to keep driving or else lose his or her job, that individual had no choice but to write down the wrong times in his or her books.

With electronic records, however, employers have little leeway when it comes to threatening drivers’ employment. Drivers will be unable to falsify their logs because their times will be kept by an electronic system that is more secure and accurate than handwritten logs. Because of the accuracy, drivers also will be unable to go past their time limits without being detected by motor vehicle inspectors or law enforcement officers. When they stop at a weigh station or get stopped by an officer, drivers will have little choice but to show accurate records of their driving times.

Another benefit to drivers includes avoiding penalties for going over their time limits. Drivers now face heavy penalties for driving time infractions. They must often pay a ticket or even face losing their license if they frequently break the time limits set for them. With electronic records, they can avoid these fines because they cannot rig their times. With the system being fail proof, drivers can stay within their times safely and avoid being ticketed or worse.

The biggest benefit comes to the public and better safety on the highway. Many lives are lost each year when drivers collide with truck drivers who are tired and over their time limits.