Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association

1 OOIDA Drive, Grain Valley, MO 64029
Web Site: www.ooida.com
Facebook: OOIDA Facebook

Contact: [email protected]
Headquarters: (816) 229-5791

For Immediate Release

OOIDA calls “Trackers on Truckers” Orwellian Big Brother control and invasion of privacy

Washington, DC – The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association submitted comments to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration regarding a controversial proposal that would require commercial motor vehicles to be equipped with unique electronic identification (UEI) technology, which would further implement “trackers on truckers.”

Excerpts of OOIDA’s comments as submitted to FMCSA:

 “It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen.” The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association (OOIDA) does not support the erosion of privacy, nor the destruction of identity through surveillance and control. To ask for more surveillance and control in the name of safety on our highways is to venture into what George Orwell would call “doublespeak”. The term “Big Brother” has come to signify government control of and intrusion into truckers’ individual lives.

Perhaps the most concerning aspect of this proposal is FMCSA’s failure to address the shortcomings and security risks associated with previous technology-based regulations, including the electronic logging device (ELD) mandate. There is insufficient recognition of the concerns motor carriers and drivers have continuously expressed about privacy and data security and no indications FMCSA has taken any meaningful steps to alleviate these concerns. Barreling forward with a new mandate involving the transmission of sensitive information only intensifies concerns involving identity theft, cargo theft, security threats, and more.

OOIDA is unaware of any research demonstrating how implementation of a UEI mandate would improve safety. CVSA has claimed, without providing any evidence, that this proposal would incentivize motor carriers to engage in safe and legal operations. We disagree with this unfounded claim. Motor carriers, especially small fleets and owner-operators, are already incentivized to operate safely and legally because it is good for their business and personal safety. FMCSA assumes the incentive for motor carriers would include avoiding unnecessary roadside inspections, but these possible benefits are far outweighed by concerns involving privacy, cybersecurity, cargo theft, driver retention, and more. We strongly discourage the agency from advancing costly, burdensome, and wildly unpopular mandates based on nothing more than flimsy assumptions involving potential safety benefits

Additional technology requirements always come at a cost, which is especially difficult for small carriers and owner-operators. Purchase, installation, maintenance and service of devices would increase operating costs for all motor carriers, without any proven benefit to efficiency or safety. Truckers are already experiencing elevated operating costs. There’s absolutely no reason to raise those costs even higher. 

  • OOIDA’s comments as submitted to FMCSA are available HERE
  • The petition can be viewed on the Federal Register HERE
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