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News & Press: TRANSPORTATION

Trucking Group Asks U.S. Supreme Court to Overturn Electronic Log Book Mandate

Monday, April 17, 2017   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Admin

The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association (OOIDA) this week filed a petition asking the United States Supreme Court to hear its lawsuit seeking to overturn the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) electronic log book (ELD) mandate for recording driver hours of service. The OOIDA lawsuit alleges that the ELD rule is arbitrary and capricious and violates the Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution banning unreasonable search and seizures by the government. The lawsuit argues that the authority of the FMCSA to collect driver data from ELD device is no substitute for obtaining a judicial warrant required by the Fourth Amendment. OOIDA is appealing a decision handed down by the United States Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit that sided with the FMCSA. The court ruled the ELD rule “is not arbitrary or capricious, nor does it violate the Fourth Amendment.” The ELD rule was published in December 2015 and requires motor carriers to equip trucks with electronic log book data recorders to record driver hours of service beginning December 18, 2017.

There are a number of exceptions to the ELD mandate including:

  • Drivers operating under the 150-air-mile radius short-haul exception from keeping written log books to record hours of service;
  • Drivers who occasionally keep a logbook but do not do so for more than eight days in any 30-day period; and
  • Model year 1999 and older trucks.
PMAA has consistently opposed the ELD mandate since it was first proposed and is currently working with the FMCSA to clarify the short haul driver exception to the mandate. Whether the Supreme Court will hear the OOIDA appeal remains uncertain. The Supreme Court receives hundreds of petitions each year but generally hears only a few dozen cases. It requires the vote of four out of the nine justices on the Supreme Court for the case to be heard.

There’s no timetable for when the court will make its decision on whether it will hear the case.

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