To understand just how important an accurate driver logbook is to your company’s future, consider the following true story:
On July 21, 2014, a semi driven by a trucker named Francisco Espinal Quiroz was going down I-55 southwest of Chicago when it collided with a group of vehicles that were stopped for construction. The resulting accident killed four people and caused hundreds of thousands of dollars in damage.
A later investigation revealed that Quiroz had falsified entries in his driver logbook. Authorities say that the tragedy was caused by excessive fatigue on the driver’s part, which he tried to cover up by playing games with the records.
The tragedy was only the latest in a series of wrecks in which driver logbook falsification played a role. In 2013, a driver named Andrew Bokelman had been behind the wheel for more than 18 hours when he fell asleep and crashed into a state trooper’s vehicle. Officer James Sauter, 28, was killed as a result. Bokelman received a fine, but his carrier, United Van Lines, paid out $10.9 million in an out-of-court settlement with Sauter’s widow.
Incidents like these point out the vital importance of keeping accurate driver logbook records. Failure to do so can cause the deaths of innocent people, bankrupt your company, and leave you with a lifetime of guilt and emotional scars. To help avoid these sad consequences, we recommend taking the following steps:
- Make sure your drivers are up-to-date on the latest trucking regulations. For example, the government recently reduced the maximum number of driving hours per week from 82 to 70. Remind your people that Uncle Sam is clamping down on truckers who falsify their driver logbooks.
- Review driver logbooks regularly for errors or outright falsifications. When necessary, administer appropriate discipline or repercussions for drivers who engage in this behavior.
- Use trucking company software to streamline your management duties, avoid errors, and free you up to take care of your hands-on duties. This is where TruckingOffice comes into the picture. Take us for a free 30-day test drive, and see for yourself how we can help you run your business safely and effectively.