One aspect of the coming electronic logging mandate that still needs to be fleshed out: Just how will the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) enforce the rule? And what will the penalty be for not complying?
Those questions are still mysteries, said former FMCSA Administrator Annette Sandberg this week at FTR’s Transportation Conference in Indianapolis.
Sandberg, who ran the agency in the early part of last decade, said she could see FMCSA enforcing it as “one strike and you’re out” policy.
“It’s a mandatory regulation,” she said, meaning enforcers likely will drop a carriers’ safety rating to “Unsatisfactory”, giving them 60 days to comply with the rule or be shut down. “A two-truck carrier might be able to do that,” she said. “But a fleet with 2,000? Not a chance. Some carriers will just throw up their hands and sell to somebody already on it. I suspect that’s what’s going to happen.”
FMCSA projected this week the rule could be published at the end of next month. It could include answers to some of the enforcement questions in it.