The Spirit of the American Trucker – November 2017

With the looming ELD-Mandate just around the corner, a group of concerned owner operators, myself included, recently headed to Washington D.C. to voice our concerns about this government over-reach. We went to our nation’s capital in a convoy of about thirty trucks. Something like this hasn’t been done in a long while, and many people offered long lists of reasons (excuses) why they were not going to join us, including that they said we were all probably going to get arrested. Well, we didn’t go to jail, but we were willing to! We stood for our beliefs in front of the big DOT/FMCSA building, and we stood on Constitution Avenue by the White House, in one of the most civil protests Washington D.C. has seen in a long time. And it worked! People working for the DOT invited five of us inside to discuss our concerns. My friend Mintu Pandher was there too, and he said that these DOT guys treated them right. We informed them about a lot of things that they had not even thought about, like how this mandate favors the big fleets, will cause thousands of independent truckers to retire early, and how this tracking device might even make us more vulnerable to cyber attacks. The FMCSA’s response was: we need more time, more data and another meeting with you guys! That’s how it went. If you like using an ELD, go ahead and get one. But, most of us have performed our job safely for decades, without a computer telling us when to sleep or when to drive. We are all glad we did it, and made a bunch of new friends for life, too, as we fought for our rights and did our best to defend the spirit of the American trucker!

About Art Czajkowski