Listening sessions to address EOBR harassment concerns

February 15, 2012

Washington – The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration will host listening sessions to field concerns about potential driver harassment stemming from the use of electronic onboard recorders, according to a supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking published Feb. 13.

In August 2011, an appeals court vacated a final rule on EOBRs because of driver-harassment concerns. According to the Feb. 13 notice, FMCSA must demonstrate that its current proposed rule addresses those concerns before. As a result, FMCSA will host listening sessions, request and follow Motor Carrier Safety Advisory Committee recommendations, and conduct surveys and additional research on the issue.

According to a recently released document (.docx file) from the advisory committee, harassment through EOBRs can include carriers forcing drivers to work unsafe numbers of hours through electronic data manipulation, as well as intrusive law enforcement monitoring, each of which could contribute to potentially unsafe driving.

Dates and times for listening sessions will be announced in future Federal Register notices, FMCSA said.