Should oil field truckers have special rules even if they cause accidents ?

An article in New York Times (May 14, 2012) described exemptions for oil field truckers that lets them take 24 hours off for 60 hours of work over seven consecutive days vs 34 hours for commercial truckers. This exemption was granted in the 1960s to permit flexibility for drivers in that industry. But inspection of oil and gas trucks in Pennsylvania showed 40 % were unsafe, and over 300 oil and gas workers have been killed in the past decade – the highest fatality level of any industry. The industry suggests that given the high demand for oil truckers, eliminating the exemption will bring in less experienced truckers and increase accidents. Should the reasons provided and the associated costs be the consideration for maintaining exemptions or should safety on the roads be the paramount reason for the decision ? Given that time not spent driving is spent waiting at the oilfields, should that time be included in the working time or not ? Should there be technology based solutions to log truckers hours to ensure compliance ? Or is the safety issue related to purported drug use at sites and a rush to earn money while the fracking boom is underway ?

About aviyer2010

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