GRAIN VALLEY, Mo. – The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association (OOIDA) is taking its challenge against the US electronic logging device (ELD) mandate to the Supreme Court.
The organization, which represents small business truckers, appealed a court ruling handed down by the US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, which ruled against OOIDA on its lawsuit against the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). OOIDA claims mandating e-logs amounts to warrantless surveillance of truckers.
“We were very disappointed and surprised by the ruling against us by the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals,” Jim Johnston, president and CEO of OOIDA said. “That same court had ruled in our favor on a previous lawsuit of ours on this same issue.”
OOIDA argues that requiring drivers to use ELDs to record their hours-of-service does not improve highway safety, since they are no more reliable than paper logs. OOIDA is also asking the Supreme Court to determine whether the ELD rule violates Fourth Amendment rights, by failing to establish a regulatory structure at the state and federal levels that serves as a substitute for a warrant.
“We believe that the Seventh Circuit erred in allowing warrantless searches of 3.5 million drivers, designed specifically to uncover evidence of criminal activity,” Johnston said. “In doing so, the Seventh Circuit decision splits directly with rulings by both the Fifth and Eleventh Circuit Courts. This is also the first time that the pervasively regulated industry exception has been applied directly to the search of an individual to serve the ordinary needs of criminal law enforcement.”