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How ELD mandate combined with Anti-Trucker wage provisions leads to wage reduction


It is the ELD mandate, if combined with the “anti-trucker wage provisions” known as the #DenhamAmendment in both the FAA and THUD bills, which would take away our freedom and permanently limit driver wages.
Combine ELD mandate with Denham Amendment AND then, logging all driver waiting time and non driving tasks as ON DUTY, and drivers will be seeing a significant wage reduction. WHY????
BECAUSE the Denham Amendment would create NEW Federal Law stating that drivers are only to be paid for the miles they drive– NO DETENTION TIME or other non driving tasks.

The ATA and industry intentions appears to be to turn their little black box punishment into a way to benefit them financially, forcing drivers to drive MORE MILES in order to compensate for the 30+ hours they work without pay.

The ATA goal is to include “anti-trucker wage provisions”, preempting state labor laws which protect driver wages,  and create new Federal Law which would relieve carriers from  legal obligation to pay drivers anything other than piece work wages.
These provisions are well known as the Denham Amendment, but have been cleverly disguised by members of trucking, as “Meal & Rest Break” provisions.

Indiana State Police – Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Division  was sent a screen shot from a driver and the ISP-CVED then posted it on FaceBook. The driver sent it with the question “What is the correct use of on duty?” The screen shot stated the following.  “Effective immediately all time being loaded or unloaded must be On Duty time. We can no longer use it as OFF DUTY time per FMCSR 392.2.”  READ more about what is considered ON DUTY time.

ELD On Duty

Screen shot from a driver sent to the ISP-CVED which they then posted on their FaceBook Page

The anti trucker wage provisions in FAA and THUD , if passed, will end states rights from protecting drivers from wage theft. (Certain state labor laws say drivers must be paid for ALL time working)What’s the wage theft? It’s allowing drivers to work hours without getting paid.

If  these provisions are allowed to remain in the FAA and THUD bills, the Federal law will dictate driver wages. Simply put, the provisions will allow wages to be paid for ONLY the miles they drive. So even if ELD’s will record all time on duty other than driving, drivers will not have to be legally paid. 
Is it all part of the plan?

Read more  Anti-Trucker wage language in 2 bills to ensure cheap labor and high profits





How ELD’s all came about:
When the first Mega Carriers were forced to use EOBR’s because of excessive violations, the ATA had to do something or independents would have an advantage. In a final rule , the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration decided that serious violators of major hours-of-service (HOS) regulations must install electronic onboard recorders (EOBRs) in all their trucks and use them to track compliance.

ATA and others within the industry then lobbied for ELD’s to be law for EVERYONE, using the safety groups to join in.

ATA then thought ahead, realizing that if ALL driver time working is recorded, including waiting at docks, as well as all other non driving time on job, it would be necessary to create additional laws to ensure that drivers do not have to be paid for their time, just their miles.

Since drivers are paid by the mile, they have been conditioned to want “more hours” to earn more money, compensating for the fact that they have not had a significant pay raise in over 30 years. Many are logging “Off Duty” rather than “On Duty not Driving”, to preserve their “70” (making up for not being paid for all their waiting time and non driving jobs.)

What if Drivers were PAID for ALL time on Duty? What would their pay check look like?
If drivers logged legally ( log on duty not driving) and ELD’s were used to accurately measure their time, they could earn as much as logging OFF DUTY.  This formula for their rate of pay would have to be consistent with their cpm wages, not a set standard hourly rate.

1) For example: If a driver earns 50cpm- drives 2000 miles/wk- he/she earns $1000. If you divide that by 70hr it = $14.29/hr.
That hourly rate would be what the driver would, at the very least, need to be paid for their waiting and all non driving work performed.

The fact is, by  logging off duty while waiting at docks or performing other non driving jobs, drivers actually end up working 100 hrs.  That makes their hourly pay more like $10.00/hr.  This is a proven fact according to a study performed for the Truckload Carriers Association (TCA).

2) If the drivers miles are reduced to 1500 miles per week by driving legally (ELD), then their gross would be $750.00/wk ( based on 50 cpm). That would come to about $10.71/hr based on 70 hours. BUT, if you add to those wages the 30 hours waiting and other not driving tasks at 10.71/hr, it equals $321.30 hourly wages added to the $750.00 cpm wages.

What this means is that if a driver logs legally, he/she ends up earning about the same amount of $$$ IF, and only IF, they are paid for ALL time “on duty not driving”
If drivers are paid for ALL time working, it means they have more home time and they’re no longer fighting to work more hours in order to make up for excessive delays at Shippers & Receivers, or other circumstances beyond their control.

The question is: Will the Motor Carriers voluntarily Pay Driver for ALL TIME?
Not if they don’t have to they won’t.  And with the anti-trucker wage provisions, they very well may not have to…legally.

ELD + Logging All On Duty Time + Anti Trucker Wage Provisions( Denham Amendment) = Significant Reduction in Driver Wages.

The ATA has lobbied and succeeded:
1) First for ELD’s
2)Having provisions to be included in 2 Major bills which will be voted on in Dec, ENSURING MOTOR CARRIERS will not be OBLIGATED to pay drivers for ANYTHING other than their CPM!

Time to wake up drivers. Call your REPS and tell them to VOTE NO on the anti-trucker wage provisions in the #FAA bill and #THUD bill. By doing so, you allow the ELD to work for YOU instead of the carriers.…/contact…/senators_cfm.cfm


IT IS the ELD mandate combined with the provisions in the FAA And THUD bill which are taking away our freedom and stunting driver wages.
They are creating more regulation by giving the  Federal government more power and taking away states rights.

It’s time to make law makers accountable. It time to call and educate them about these provisions in the bills they are about to vote on. Make the call. 202-224-3121
Tell them to vote No on the anti trucker provisions in the THUD and FAA. These provisions are Anti Trucker and Anti Safety. They are designed to legally have truckers work without being paid.
If passed, Drivers will only be paid for the miles they drive, not the time they are at work (such as detention time).


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By: Allen Smith

Allen Smith is a 37 year veteran who started at an early age in a household goods family moving business. He began driving straight trucks in 1977 and moved to the big rigs in 1982. His experience within the industry includes; owner operator, company driver, operations manager, and owner of a long distance HHG moving business, taking many of the long haul moves himself when needed. Allen Smith, a truck driver advocate who is driven by the desire to help others succeed within an industry where injustice, unrewarded sacrifice, and lack of respect and recognition exists. Allen and his wife Donna are hosts of Truth About Trucking ”Live” on Blog Talk Radio. Other websites include AskTheTrucker, TruckingSocialMedia, NorthAmericanTruckingALerts, TruthAboutTrucking, and many Social Media websites. In 2011 Allen and Donna hosted the first Truck Driver Social Media Convention, designed to create unity and solutions for the trucking industry. This is now being extended through the North American Trucking Alerts network as those within the industry join forces for the betterment of the industry. Allen strongly supports other industry advocates who are also stepping up to the plate to help those who share honesty, guidance and direction. He believes that all those involved in trucking need to be accountable for their part within the industry, including drivers, carriers, brokers, shippers, receivers, etc… The list of supporters and likeminded people grow daily, networking together and sharing thoughts and ideas for the betterment of trucking. He has coined the popular phrase "Raising the standards of the trucking industry"

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6 Responses to How ELD mandate combined with Anti-Trucker wage provisions leads to wage reduction. - Post a Comment

  1. Bill Evans

    DOT & FMCA can go to HELL!

  2. CBean

    If not responsible for loading or unloading you can legally go off duty , or in bunk sleeper….Quit whining if you ran legal to begin with wouldn’t be in this position.

    • Allen Smith

      According to FMCSA you must be relieved of ALL Duty to be off duty.
      395.2. Definitions:

  3. […] To understand more how ELD’s will further effect driver wages read “How ELD mandate combined with Anti-Trucker wage provisions leads to wage reduction” […]

  4. ed

    this was planned to remove small companies, so the mega would force every shipper to use them. with no choice for anyone

  5. Jeff Clark

    Wage rates have increased since the ELD mandate. Freight rates have increased since the ELD mandate. As an owner op, my profitability has increase since the ELD mandate.

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