How Do You Feel About Driver Facing Cameras?

Topic 17788 | Page 12

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Rob T.'s Comment
member avatar

Brian, even as a local driver if I feel the roads are too bad, or i am too tired I am not pushed to continue on. Back in January I had a run that was supposed to have me run out to Omaha and Lincoln NE and make it back to Des Moines same day. White out conditions and several jacknifed semis in the ditches on i80 to lincoln made me uncomfortable to head into that. I delivered to Omaha and notified my supervisor that I would not be finishing my route today due to hazardous road conditions. You know their response? "Ok thank you, stay safe. Send a message when you roll out tomorrow." Now there will be times we have to drive in less than ideal conditions however there is a point where it is just too bad. Regarding driving tired. Again, my company encourage us to pull over and take a 20 minute nap if we need to. Most days I am scheduled atleast 12 hours yet they want us to be safe more than anything. However, if it becomes a common occurrence that you're needing to stop early due to fatigue or needing a nap I'm sure eventually you'll be called out on it. As a professional we're many times expected to be ready to roll after our 10 hours are up.

Brian G.'s Comment
member avatar

Brian...that sort of policy (in bold) is highly unusual and not prolific. It's rare. Not sure where you came up with that (internet?), but I know you haven't experienced it first hand. Might be true for small, Mom & Pop operations, but not the carriers represented in this forum. You are forgetting about the insurance companies...and the power they yield over any unsafe operation. I drive for Swift, the darling of the negatively infused head-trash found on the internet,...they have never forced me to drive "tired", deliver an overweight load or operate a mechanically compromised truck.

Page 61 https://www.truckingtruth.com/book/page61

"Now any smart company will be way ahead of the drivers on this one. They want you to cheat, and when a driver does, the company will gladly turn their head the other way...that is, until THEY find themselves in some sort of trouble. Well, they would NEVER tell you to cheat. They can clearly see from the miles you are running that you must be cheating, but as long as nobody is looking they'll let it go. But the moment you get in an accident or the DOT comes in for a random log audit, well, guess what your company is going to do? Yap, that's right, they're going to throw you under the bus.

Now I've got your attention don't I? Now you're starting to see the seriousness of the dilemma a driver faces. So let's get this straight....everybody wins if the driver cheats his logbook , but if he gets caught the company is going to claim innocence and blame the driver?"

No, I personally haven't had it happen to me. I did read it on this site though. I think you might have missed my point though.

The combination of e-logs, telemetry and driver/external cameras paints a full picture. Cameras are complementary to other types of data and provide a more accurate situational awareness that can help explain something positively or negatively.

*If* a company was pushing it's drivers they could find the data being used against them. I think that actually works in the driver's favor.

There are numerous studies that show that the quality of work declines beyond about 6 hours. I would expect that to hold true in driving as well.

Here is one such graphic attributed to the FMCSA. I couldn't find the original graphic though: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hours_of_service#/media/File:Hours_of_service_FMCSA_study.svg

When I went digging for it I found something else that underscores why a carrier might want cameras in and on it's trucks. The numbers are extrapolated from 963 crashes that were visited. This makes the exact percentages suspect statistically, but it's still a worthwhile reference.

https://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/safety/research-and-analysis/large-truck-crash-causation-study-analysis-brief

Highlights: Out of a pool of 141,000 crashes over a period of 33 months, 10% were attributed to "Driver: Felt under work pressure from carrier"

Btw, I don't have a negative opinion of Swift. I've pretty much concluded that ex-drivers who whine about trucking washed out most of the time. So when I see someone on YouTube complaining about Swift or any other company I just take it with a grain of salt. You can have a bad experience at the best of companies if you show up with a bad attitude. Conversely, you can have a good experience at what gossip says is a bad company if you have a positive attitude and work for a manager you get along with.

Logbook:

A written or electronic record of a driver's duty status which must be maintained at all times. The driver records the amount of time spent driving, on-duty not driving, in the sleeper berth, or off duty. The enforcement of the Hours Of Service Rules (HOS) are based upon the entries put in a driver's logbook.

CSA:

Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA)

The CSA is a Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) initiative to improve large truck and bus safety and ultimately reduce crashes, injuries, and fatalities that are related to commercial motor vehicle

FMCSA:

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

The FMCSA was established within the Department of Transportation on January 1, 2000. Their primary mission is to prevent commercial motor vehicle-related fatalities and injuries.

What Does The FMCSA Do?

  • Commercial Drivers' Licenses
  • Data and Analysis
  • Regulatory Compliance and Enforcement
  • Research and Technology
  • Safety Assistance
  • Support and Information Sharing

DOT:

Department Of Transportation

A department of the federal executive branch responsible for the national highways and for railroad and airline safety. It also manages Amtrak, the national railroad system, and the Coast Guard.

State and Federal DOT Officers are responsible for commercial vehicle enforcement. "The truck police" you could call them.

Fm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.
G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Brian wrote back to G-Town:

I did read it on this site though. I think you might have missed my point though.

Brian I don't really understand your point or need to...

I am trying to explain what I have experienced in my 5+ years doing this. I am not here to debate this into infinity. The reference to Brett's book when taken out of context, completely overlooks the fact he was referring to paper logs. They only exist in training now, as a learning exercise.

His overall point; the driver must take responsibility for the decisions they make, the actions they take and must accept accountability and possibly the consequences in the event of a problem. The cheating he referred to is from a bygone era, in the past. A driver cannot run 3 log books using e-logs, it's virtually impossible.

My point to you; I have never felt pushed or forced to do something illegal, unethical or unsafe. It's a job, the work must get done within the legal limits of HOS and the common sense limits of safety.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Rob T.'s Comment
member avatar

Brian, here is another example of why cameras are a good thing to have . Sunday night roughly 3am we had a driver fall asleep behind the wheel and end up rolling his truck. Thankfully he's ok, and the driver of the straight truck THAT HE RAN INTO AS THE STRAIGHT TRUCK WAS MERGING ON while our driver was doing 65 is ok as well. Both drivers spent a full day in the hospital. Without the cameras the driver could make up some BS, or claim the straight truck brake checked him. With this camera there is no question what happened. I don't know (and it isn't my business) what sort of discipline this driver is facing but we need to be held accountable. Even though my company tells us pull over if we're tired this driver didn't. He was headed eastbound on I80 and ended up blocking all lanes of westbound for over 6 hours as they cleaned up the 30,000 pounds of cargo he dumped. The cab of the truck was ripped from the frame. The fact he survived is incredible.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Brian M.'s Comment
member avatar

I will never drive any truck with an inward facing camera, or any camera that has an audio recording capability even if they claim it isn't used. Because you will never know if it is. It's highlighted in my resume. I didn't become a truck driver to be treated like a maximum security prisoner, and I expect a certain level of privacy. Because that is in fact where I live on the road, irregardless of who owns it.

PackRat's Comment
member avatar

Sure. Lots of the dinosaurs stated the same thing about the HOS changes, implementation of the FMCSA , deregulation, auto shift transmissions, and the mandate of the ELD.

good-luck.gif

CSA:

Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA)

The CSA is a Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) initiative to improve large truck and bus safety and ultimately reduce crashes, injuries, and fatalities that are related to commercial motor vehicle

FMCSA:

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

The FMCSA was established within the Department of Transportation on January 1, 2000. Their primary mission is to prevent commercial motor vehicle-related fatalities and injuries.

What Does The FMCSA Do?

  • Commercial Drivers' Licenses
  • Data and Analysis
  • Regulatory Compliance and Enforcement
  • Research and Technology
  • Safety Assistance
  • Support and Information Sharing

Fm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Brian M.'s Comment
member avatar

Been at this 26+ years. I will not drive a truck that has an inward facing camera, or any camera that has an audio recording capability even if it is not used. I don't care how good it is. I won't work for a company that even has them, and that's generally bigger fleets. It's highlighted in my resume. An outward facing camera for video only, and obviously an ELD unit, are fine with me.

I did not become a truck driver to be treated like a maximum security prisoner, or a robot. Not sure what kind of person you have to be to tolerate that.

PackRat's Comment
member avatar

Been at this 26+ years. I will not drive a truck that has an inward facing camera, or any camera that has an audio recording capability even if it is not used. I don't care how good it is. I won't work for a company that even has them, and that's generally bigger fleets. It's highlighted in my resume. An outward facing camera for video only, and obviously an ELD unit, are fine with me.

I did not become a truck driver to be treated like a maximum security prisoner, or a robot. Not sure what kind of person you have to be to tolerate that.

Yeah, we got that in your first post two weeks ago.

Yawn...

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Been at this 26+ years. I will not drive a truck that has an inward facing camera, or any camera that has an audio recording capability even if it is not used. I don't care how good it is. I won't work for a company that even has them, and that's generally bigger fleets. It's highlighted in my resume. An outward facing camera for video only, and obviously an ELD unit, are fine with me.

I did not become a truck driver to be treated like a maximum security prisoner, or a robot. Not sure what kind of person you have to be to tolerate that.

26 years of experience... and this is what you choose as your first two posts?

Considering the valuable experience you have...and the wisdom you could share...is that all yah got?

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Davy A.'s Comment
member avatar

Depressing thread all the way around. not taking a side in it either way. From a spectator point of view though, Id say those against it could phrase their arguments more like a campaign and have a better stance. Perhaps state a basis in the American values of independence long since associated with the freedom of the road that was forged in the fires of revolution by our founding fathers. And the perceived value of having space from people as its a psychological tie to the rest of the world that we like to get away from...stuff like that. While all true, they are emotional arguments. But emotions are powerful things. Those for it have logic on their side, which doesn't bode well for an emotion basis rebuttal.

Anyway, the big take away for me....Can I not sip coffee while driving? And if not, anyone use a camel back or similar item? Total noob question, sorry.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
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