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A New Day

Consequences—intended or otherwise—of the ELD mandate
MS_A New Day

As the weeks and months pass after the mandate went into effect, tension levels seem to have abated somewhat, and the ag hauler reprieves helped.

“The new adjustments gave us some breathing room,” notes Keister, allowing more time “for people to get used to the technology and be trained on how to ensure compliance. And hopefully, as we attract a new generation of drivers who have been using it from day one, we won’t see this learning curve.” Nevertheless, he says, it’s still too soon to see how it will impact retention and what will happen to insurance rates and safety standards.

Christensen, however, has not softened his stance. “Most old-timers are throwing in the towel, but after 42 years of trucking, I still enjoy it.” He says he will not, however, be swayed by politicians who know nothing about the trucking industry. “We already know who the bad actors [on the road] are,” he insists, and believes better driver training, not intrusive oversight, is the answer to safety.

In trying to look on the bright side, ELD compliance could lead to efficiencies and leaner companies, as well as safety. And in this high-tech world where data is king, there are enormous upsides to having ELDs collecting and processing all manner of useful information.

So whether you’re a fan or foe of trucking’s new electronic era, everyone must remain focused on the road ahead. “Drivers, brokers, shippers, and receivers,” McKenzie says, “ultimately, everyone will have to adjust to this new reality.”

Image: IM_photo/


Leonard Pierce is a freelancer with more than 20 years of experience in food and related industries.