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Will e-logs put an end to driver fatigue?

For drivers sharing the road with commercial trucks, there are often times when there is a little unease when side by side with their roaring 18 wheels. After all, it's an awful lot of truck for one person to control, especially when they are exhausted, stressed or distracted.

In the past, some commercial truck drivers have been pushed to the brink of exhaustion, trying to stay on or ahead of schedule. To do so, some have resorted to fudging logbooks in order to make deadlines. With little control over what does or does not get recorded in a driver's logbook, some commercial carrier companies have turned a blind eye to this practice. While doing so may give truckers the extra hours needed to make deadlines, it also puts other drivers at risk.

In an attempt to prevent driver fatigue, and clean up logbook discrepancies, some commercial carrier companies have switched from traditional paper and pen logbooks to high-tech, error proof e-logs. Electronic logbooks, or e-logs, have taken record keeping to the next level. By producing an easily accessible record in real time, drivers are made to adhere to federally regulated hours of service laws. Although this may push back delivery times, it may also force drivers to get the sleep they need to prevent driver fatigue related accidents.

With the ability to link a drivers e-log to the commercial carrier company's safety and inspection departments, audit time and crash investigations can be expedited, saving time and money. Although implementing the e-log program can be expensive at first, it could potentially save millions of dollars in negligence lawsuits related to driver fatigue. What some truck drivers may consider a huge hassle, others may see as a valuable tool in the fight against negligence. As more and more commercial carrier companies make the switch to e-logs, the general public may see a relieving reduction in fatigue related accidents.

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