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February 2017

Posted By John Hausladen , Wednesday, February 1, 2017
Updated: Monday, February 6, 2017

Heard on the Road — Truckers are full of opinions and not bashful about sharing them. That is actually part of what I really like about our regional membership meetings. We get to hear what is really going on. Such information helps us focus on what is most important to your operations. We recently completed seven meetings across the state and received some great feedback.

E-Logs Were Tops — The number one topic at each meeting was far and away the implementation of electronic logging devices (ELDs).

Carriers who have converted uniformly expressed how they did not lose large numbers of drivers during their transition. They also stressed how critical load planning has become in this new environment.

Many carriers are concerned about hardware failures when a truck is on the road. Is seven days really adequate time under the regulation to get a device fixed, especially if you route your trucks home infrequently? Will there be enough service centers and technicians across the system to address problems quickly? What will it cost to obtain repairs as demand increases? When a truck goes down for non-ELD reasons, will a leased truck be compatible with the ELD you normally use?

Carriers repeatedly cited problems with devices taking a long time to boot up as data is downloaded. Others reported cold weather challenges with tablets left in vehicles over the weekend. Still other carriers had yet to implement ELDs and were looking for information to help make the purchasing decision. Some were not aware of the MTA ELD Resource Guide (available at www. mntruck.org/resources) and the many carriers who have volunteered to field calls by carriers finalizing their decisions.

It is painfully clear there will be a lot of glitches to work out in the system. The MTA plans to contact the FMCSA to express these serious concerns well in advance of the effective date.

In additional, our April 20th Trucking Management Conference has a session dedicated to coping with ELDs in the real world, including how to prepare your shippers.

Truck to the Capitol — As a reminder, MTA members will be meeting with their local legislators on February 16 for Truck to the Capitol. This is a great opportuntiy to give the trucking industry a voice by letting our representatives know their decisions affect what we do.

Great Ambassadors — We are very excited to have two new trucking ambassadors. Michael Matheson from Manning Transfer was named the 2017 MTA Driver of the Year at our recent banquet, while Bill Krouse was appointed a member of America’s Road Team. You can bet we will be using them to educate the media, legislators and the public about our great industry. Congratulations Michael and Bill.

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