Research Project

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A Survey on Electronic Logging Devices and Driver Harassment

Goal           

To broadly examine the issue of driver harassment and to determine the extent to which hours-of-service (HOS) monitoring devices (MDs) are used to either harass drivers and/or monitor driver productivity. The research must explore the relevant issues from the perspective of both drivers and carriers. Based on the research findings, the second objective is to outline a set of countermeasures or best practices that will ensure that HOS-MDs are not used by carriers for driver harassment.

Background

On August 26, 2011, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit vacated the Agency’s April 2010 Final Rule on the use of electronic logging devices (ELDs). The Court stated that contrary to statutory requirements, the Agency failed to address the issue of driver harassment, including how ELDs could potentially be used to harass drivers and addressing ways to ensure that ELDs were not used to harass drivers.

Summary

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is conducting a survey to broadly examine the issue of driver harassment and to determine the extent to which HOS MDs are used to either harass drivers and/or monitor driver productivity. The research will explore the relevant issues from the perspective of both drivers and carriers. Based on the research findings, the second objective is to outline a set of countermeasures or best practices that will ensure that HOS-MDs are not used by carriers for driver harassment. The Office of Management and Budget Control Number for the survey project is 2126-0055. The data collection among drivers and carriers is being conducted by MaineWay Services and Abt SRBI.

The intercept survey of drivers at a sample of truck stops across the country is scheduled to be completed by May 31, 2014.  The carrier mail-out survey was sent to approximately 4,000 carriers beginning in May 2014 and is scheduled for completion by June 30, 2014. The carrier survey is being managed by Abt SRBI and uses the opinionport web-based survey function. Respondents or others who would like more information about the project should contact Albert Alvarez at 202-385-2387.

Outcomes

The output will be a report identifying the nature of the problem of driver harassment with the use of HOS-MDs in the commercial motor vehicle (CMV) industry. This study will also identify any policy changes that could be used to mitigate the harassment issue.

Milestones

Task 1: Conduct Kickoff Meeting at FMCSA1 month after task award (ATA)
Task 2: Submit Research Design Plan2 months ATA
Task 3: Independent Peer Review of Research Design Plan3 months ATA
Task 4: Collect Data10 months ATA
Task 5: Conduct Analysis11 months ATA
Task 6: Draft final report12 months ATA 
Task 7: Independent peer review (draft final report)13 months ATA
Task 8: Presentation of draft final report14 months ATA
Task 9: Final Report, 508 Compliant Version15 months ATA

Funding

FY 2010      $400,000      FMCSA Research and Technology

Status 

Survey interviews and data collection are underway. The final report is due September 2014.

Project Lead

For more information, contact Albert Alvarez of FMCSA's Research Division at (202) 385-2387 or albert.alvarez@dot.gov.

Contractor

MaineWay Services
 

Updated: Monday, November 24, 2014