Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Road rumor: Are scale houses in seven states swapping photos and info?

If you’ve been on a social media site in the last few weeks, perhaps you’ve seen this:

Somebody shares a picture (or series of pictures) showing a Qualcomm with a message from their company saying that scale houses in Washington, California, Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky, Arizona and Texas are all linking their systems. Even if the scale is closed, a camera will take a photo of your DOT number, as well as record the time you enter the state and the time you exit at the last scale house, meaning state police and commercial vehicle enforcement officers will be able to “prove” whether or not your log is false. The system is supposed to go into place in September.

Except that’s probably not going to happen, according to multiple sources.

One of those sources, OOIDA Security Operations Director Doug Morris, said that while information can be retrieved from trucks equipped with either PrePass or Drivewyze systems, the scale houses themselves are not linked.

“The plan from (U.S.) DOT is to integrate all the state-run systems for the roadside/scale house officer to utilize in the future,” he said. “But that is a few years off.”

When we reached out to the various state DOTS to find out if they were linking up, we got no response, except for an emphatic “there is no such thing” from the folks at Indiana’s Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Division.

Just a reminder, OOIDA’s position on electronic on board recorders is that “they are no more a reliable or accurate record of a driver’s compliance with HOS regulations than paper log books and there remains no rational basis for the economic burden and unreasonable imposition to personal privacy presented by requiring drivers to be monitored by EOBRs.”