American Trucking Associations, Inc. (ATA) is vitally interested and involved in promoting both the safety of the trucking industry and our industry’s workplace - the nation’s highway system. ATA recognizes that laws and regulations relating to commercial motor vehicle safety are essential, but knows they must also be practical. They should benefit the public, motor carriers and their employees while imposing a minimal burden on commerce. They should promote uniformity of state and federal requirements. Finally, such requirements should be imposed equally on all types of carriers engaged in both interstate and intrastate commerce.
Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA)
ATA supports the objectives of CSA: the use of performance-based data to create real-time carrier safety measurements and to better identify unsafe carriers. However, ATA has called for fundamental improvements to the CSA data and methodology so that carriers’ safety scores accurately and reliably reflect future crash risk.
Electronic Logging Devices
ATA supports laws and regulations requiring the use of electronic logging devices (ELDs) for documenting compliance with hours-of-service (HOS) rules. Such requirements should based on the minimal, functional, and performance specifications necessary to accurately record hours-of-service compliance, retain existing record of duty status exceptions, provide relief from supporting document requirements, and be simultaneously applicable to all motor carriers subject to the requirements.
Hours of Service
ATA supports science-based hours of service regulations that promote the effective management of driver fatigue and do not merely dictate a maximum number of working hours. Hours of service regulations should offer operational flexibility while promoting highway safety; be consistent with scientific principles relating to fatigue, rest and recovery; address the needs of all industry segments; be cost-effective; and be easy to understand, comply with, and enforce.
ATA supports sound minimum medical requirements for ensuring that those with conditions that inhibit the safe operation of commercial motor vehicles are prohibited from driving. Also, ATA suppored the creation of the National Registry of Certified Medical Examiners to ensure that examiners are knowledgeable and qualified.
Drug and Alcohol Testing
ATA is a strong advocate of mandatory testing of commercial motor vehicle operators for drug and alcohol use. Also, ATA supports allowing the use of alternative specimens, such as hair, to comply with federal drug testing requirements. Finally, ATA is aligned with leading safety advocates on alcohol-related safety topics such as ignition interlock devices and open container laws.
Driver Training and Licensing
ATA supports national, uniform, performance-based commercial driver’s licensing testing standards. Also, the federal government should require state adoption of stronger CDL skills testing standards that reflect actual on-road driving requirements. ATA believes entry-level driver training should be focused on minimum, competency-based requirements consisting of both, classroom and behind-the-wheel training.