Amidst all the controversy of the highway funding bill passed by Congress and the divisive riders that have been attached, the Senate Appropriations Committee has put forth its own DOT funding bill that is heavily in favor of almost everything that the big carriers have been lobbying for; allowing longer and heavier trucks, mandatory e-logs/EOBRs, and mandatory speed limiters.
The bill was passed in a 20-10 vote and will go on to the full senate before being handed off to Congress and then the White House.
If it becomes law, the bill will make a few changes that are almost universally approved of in the trucking industry like extending the suspension of the HOS restart rules and preventing the FMCSA from increasing minimum insurance amounts. Additionally, the FMCSA would be required to warn users that CSA scores “are not necessarily reliable indicators of relative safety performance.”
Along with those however are changes that have been dividing the industry for years:
- Within 60 days of the bill signing of the bill, the FMCSA must publish a final rule mandating the use of Electronic Onboard Recorders (EOBRs).
- Within 60 days of the bill signing of the bill, the FMCSA must publish a final rule on mandatory speed limiters.
- Carriers will be allowed to run twin 33-foot long trailers.