Proposed rule on the move would prohibit coercion of truckers

By David Tanner, Land Line associate editor | 5/2/2014

One regulatory action that actually makes sense from a professional truck driver’s perspective would prohibit motor carriers, shippers, receivers and brokers from coercing drivers to violate the rules. The FMCSA’s proposed rule against coercion cleared an administrative hurdle on Wednesday, April 30, but is not a final rule just yet.

A clampdown on coercion of drivers could be a big step to addressing problems associated with detention time at the docks and other issues truckers face during the course of a work day.

Congress directed the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration to issue a rule to prohibit the coercion of drivers as part of the highway law MAP-21, Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century.

The proposed rule is not publicly available at this stage. The FMCSA submitted its notice of proposed rulemaking to the Office of the Secretary of Transportation in August 2013, and that office sent it to the Office of Management and Budget on Jan. 9, 2014.

The proposal cleared the Office of Management and Budget on Wednesday.

According to an abstract of the proposal, it would ensure that “an operator of a commercial motor vehicle is not coerced by a motor carrier, shipper, receiver, or transportation intermediary to operate a commercial vehicle in violation of a regulation.”

The FMCSA projects the proposed rule could be published in the coming weeks, which would trigger a 60-day comment period.

See related stories:
Proposed reg targeting coercion of truckers under review
Feds address coercion, pressure on truckers to violate regs

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