This announcement by Mercer Transportation for an electronic onboard recorder (EOBR) mandate for its Owner Operators is a progressive move that we have seen many other O/O centric, Asset-less or Asset-light carriers making recently. Electronic logs are easy to acquire for Owner Operators with solutions like the driver preferred BigRoad eLog solution. There is no need to wait to roll out till mid 2015. Drivers can be up and running in minutes just by downloading from their favorite app store on Google or Apple
Mercer Transportation announced this week (original article link was removed – but this was posted in Truckers Report) it will be the latest fleet to make a move toward making electronic onboard recorders (aka electronic logging devices) required for its roughly 2,200 owner-operators.
The original article stated that Len Dunman, safety director for the fleet, said the company will be phasing in EOBR use during the next two years, and 100 percent of its owner-operator fleet will be equipped with the devices by the middle of 2015.
Because its competitors are moving in the same direction — and because of tightening federal regulations, like hours of service and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s Compliance, Safety, Accountability program — Dunman said the fleet had to begin requiring EOBRs to ensure both compliance and competitiveness in the market.
The carrier will provide the necessary hardware — the device itself — in the early part of its phase-in program for owner-operators who volunteer as early adopters. Dunman didn’t have an exact timeline, but he did say that portion of the phase-in program will end, though, and afterward owner-operators with the fleet will be required to provide their own EOBR device. See a demo of the #1 rated Driver ELog Solution
There also will be monthly fees associated with the devices that owner-operators must pay, too. Editor’s note: Why not let the O/O’s choose BigRoad, a free app, at no cost to the driver at all?
Dunman said the fleet did not want to wait until federal regulations required the use of e-logs to switch, because of the time it will take for a large fleet like Mercer to train its drivers and to deal with the learning curve.
Dunman said because negotiations with the hardware provider is ongoing, he could not talk about pricing for either the devices themselves or the monthly fees.
According to an announcement this week, though, Mercer did select J.J. Keller’s Keller Mobile platform for its device and software provider. Keller Mobile allows drivers to use smartphone and tablet apps to upload data and it lets fleet staff monitor “real-time compliance and driver performance,” according to the announcement.