ATA urges Obama administration to keep its promise to relieve burden of unnecessary regulations as it considers changes to hours-of-service proposal, says changes would hit hard at 'tangible goods' economy

ARLINGTON, Virginia , September 6, 2011 (press release) – In a letter to Cass Sunstein, administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs at the Office of Management and Budget, American Trucking Associations urged the Obama administration to live up to its promise to relieve the burden of unnecessary regulations as it considers changes to the hours-of-service rules.

“Late last year, DOT’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration FMCSA proposed costly changes to truck drivers’ hours-of-service rules which, if finalized, would result in reduced wages for hundreds of thousands of drivers, significant administrative and efficiency costs for trucking companies, and most importantly, billions of dollars in lost productivity’” ATA Senior Vice President of Policy and Regulatory Affairs Dave Osiecki wrote in a Sept. 2 letter to Sunstein. “These inefficiencies and costs would deal a serious and sustained blow to the huge ‘tangible goods’ economy that trucking supports, affecting not only shippers of freight, but ultimately consumers.”

Proposed after political pressure from outside groups, the FMCSA's proposed rule would enact drastic changes to driver's lifestyles and carrier operations without providing any safety benefit.

“DOT described its proposal as a means to further improve trucking’s highway safety record. Yet, FMCSA’s own regulatory impact analysis showed that the proposal’s costs outweigh any potential crash reduction benefits,” Osiecki wrote.

The current hours-of-service rules, in place since 2004, he said, have allowed for trucking to move 70% of the nation's goods and achieve record low levels of crashes and fatalities.

“Just two days ago, on August 31, 2011, FMCSA released even more evidence demonstrating that compliance with the current HOS rules is ‘strongly correlated with crash rates.’” Osiecki wrote. “In other words, carrier compliance with the current rules is directly linked to safer trucking operations.”

To read the full text of ATA’s letter click here.

American Trucking Associations is the largest national trade association for the trucking industry. Through a federation of 50 affiliated state trucking associations and industry-related conferences and councils, ATA is the voice of the industry America depends on most to move our nation’s freight. Follow ATA on Twitter or on Facebook. Good stuff. Trucks Bring It!

* All content is copyrighted by Industry Intelligence, or the original respective author or source. You may not recirculate, redistrubte or publish the analysis and presentation included in the service without Industry Intelligence's prior written consent. Please review our terms of use.