OOIDA takes case against ELD mandate to Supreme Court

by Talk Business & Politics staff (staff2@talkbusiness.net) 98 views 

The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association has appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court to hear its case against the federal mandate requiring drivers to track logs electronically. However, analysts don’t foresee the case going the association’s way.

The ELD mandate is set to go into effect Dec. 18, but the association has been fighting in court to see that it’s overturned. The mandate “is the equivalent of warrantless surveillance of trucks, and that the government’s weak excuses for doing so fail to justify violating their Fourth Amendment rights,” according to a news release.

Transportation analyst Brad Delco of Stephens expects “with a high degree of confidence that the mandate will be upheld.” Delco noted that OOIDA’s petition to the Supreme Court “is centered around the same Fourth Amendment argument” that the association previously brought up in its case against the mandate. In January, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals denied the association’s appeal to rehear the case after previously ruling in favor of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and upholding the ELD mandate.

“We were very disappointed and surprised by the ruling against us by the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals,” said Jim Johnston, president and CEO of the association. “That same court had ruled in our favor on a previous lawsuit of ours on this same issue.”

In August 2011, the court threw out a proposed electronic logbook rule based on the argument that drivers would be harassed. However, the ELD mandate prohibits harassment, according to the rule, and carriers could face civil penalties, if drivers are harassed.