Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association
Contact: Norita Taylor, [email protected]
Headquarters: (816) 229-5791
For Immediate Release
OOIDA extends thanks to Congress for support for glider kits
The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association thanked several members of Congress for a letter sent on Oct. 10 to the Environmental Protection Agency requesting relief for the glider industry by way of an extended compliance date for certain regulations.
U.S. Representative Bill Posey of Florida and other members of Congress signed the letter asking to extend the compliance date of the Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Fuel Efficiency Standards as they relate to glider vehicles and engines.
The letter from the members of Congress describes the financial hardship faced by the arbitrary production cap imposed by the EPA on the glider kit and truck industry and how it has meant the loss of hundreds of jobs to workers.
“The regulation not only hurts workers on the manufacturing side, but it also hurts owner-operators that look to purchase a glider kit for their operation,” said Mike Matousek, manager of government affairs. “Glider kits are often times more reliable and more affordable, which makes them a viable option for small-business truckers.”
OOIDA testified on behalf of small-business truckers at a hearing in September held by the U.S. House Environment and Oversight subcommittees of the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology.
In July of this year, the EPA announced it had decided to delay through 2019 the enforcement of a cap that would limit the number of glider trucks that could be built. The agency said the delay was intended to reduce the impact on the industry until a resolution could be reached. However, a lawsuit prompted the EPA to reverse its decision.
OOIDA says that gliders are about 25 percent less expensive than new commercial motor vehicles and can save owner-operators tens of thousands of dollars. Owner-operators typically purchase glider kits with remanufactured engines because it allows them to diagnose and repair mechanical issues without the need for a dealer technician or specialized equipment.
Emission standards have increased the cost for new trucks and the technology has often been found to make them extremely unreliable. If a truck becomes a liability by routinely being inoperable, the owner must absorb the cost of lost productivity, while also paying for the necessary repairs.
OOIDA contends the option of purchasing a glider kit can sometimes mean saving a small trucking business from going out of business and the federal government shouldn’t unnecessarily restrict their availability.