EXCLUSIVE: FMCSA Breaks its Silence on D.C. Trucker Rally and Broker Price Gouging Claims

Washington D.C. – The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is breaking its silence about the ongoing rally in Washington D.C. and the growing controversy over low rates being offered by freight brokers during the COVID-19 recession.

Truckers from across the country descended on our nation’s capital on May 1 as part of the MayDay demonstrations with the intent to bring awareness to low freight rates being offered to small business truckers during a time of national emergency.

Remarkably, the rally caught the attention of the President of the United States.




 

President Donald Trump publicly expressed his support for the truckers in multiple statements, but curiously, the leaders at the United States Department of Transportation (USDOT) as part of the Trump Administration, including USDOT Secretary Elaine Chao, remained silent on the matter… that is, until today.

A spokesperson with the FMCSA reached out to Transportation Nation Network (TNN) on Tuesday in response to an article we published on Sunday entitled, USDOT’s Silence on D.C. Rally Speaks Loud and Clear Message to Truckers.”

The article pointed out the USDOT’s conspicuous silence and the message it was sending to truckers supporting the D.C. rally.

“They haven’t made a comment because they know they have failed miserably,” Shawn Mcintosh, a rally organizer, told TNN on Sunday. “We’ve gone to them so many times and that’s never even gone to the ears of the man in the White House who can do something about it. So, we’ll sit here until we get a meeting with him.”




 

An FMCSA spokesperson addressed Mcintosh and all truckers in an exclusive statement to TNN.

“FMCSA always welcomes and wants input from drivers and those in the commercial vehicle industry,” the spokesperson said. “FMCSA supports America’s truck drivers and is working on crafting policies that will improve the lives of drivers, such as improvements to the hours-of-service rules to allow drivers greater flexibility, while maintaining the highest level of safety.”

The Agency representative challenged assertions the FMCSA has been unresponsive to drivers’ requests.

“During this Administration, FMCSA has been committed to directly engaging with drivers and Commercial Motor Vehicle (CMV) stakeholders throughout the country and will continue to work closely with the industry to better the lives of drivers and improve safety on America’s roadways,” he said.




 

Mcintosh and other truckers TNN has spoken with also expressed outrage over the USDOT’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic by failing to provide many truckers with personal protective equipment (PPE) for more than six weeks while much was still unknown about the virus.

“Why did we not have personal protective equipment (PPE)? Why were we not provided testing? They completely failed the men and women who are the backbone of the country,” Mcintosh stated.


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The FMCSA spokesperson responded by pointing to the Agency’s unprecedented actions taken thus far.

“FMCSA has also taken historic action in response to the coronavirus outbreak to provide truckers with regulatory relief and recently has helped distribute one million protective face coverings to truckers around the nation,” he explained.

 

Broker Price Gouging Claims

In a nationally televised interview last Friday morning on Fox News, President Trump indicated he believed truckers are being price gouged by freight brokers.

“Oh they are price gouged,” Mr. Trump said in response to a question about pricing gouging. “We’re going to take care of that.”

Read President Trump’s full statement HERE.

However, according to the FMCSA spokesperson, the Agency has not received any notice of such violations.

“The Agency has no regulatory authority over fees charged by brokers—nor has FMCSA received any notice that any Agency regulations have been violated,” he informed.

Meeting With President Trump

Rally organizers and participants are now well into their second week of demonstrations with more trucks on the way, according to multiple sources on the ground in D.C.




 

Mcintosh and others say they are not leaving our nation’s capital until they have an opportunity to voice their concerns directly to President Trump.

“All we are asking for is a meeting. It can even be a telephone call. It doesn’t have to be face to face. The only one that can help us now is the man in the White House and we’re staying until we do,” he declared.

Once again, in TNN’s ongoing discussions with the FMCSA, we asked if the Agency and Secretary Chao would encourage or discourage the President to meet with rally organizers to hear their concerns.

Unfortunately, the FMCSA continues to decline providing an answer to that question.

TransportationNation.com will be closely monitoring new developments.

Photo courtesy of Rick Santiago

 


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Comment (2)

  1. Awesome! I took a load, $1.09 per mile, from Salem, VA to Tolleson Az 2303 loaded miles, (actual safest route mileage was 2399) driving down per mile average! Now that I see the on going effort I am encouraged! In the Denver, Colorado area looking to head to Winchester VA. $1.06 per mile. I reached out to the shipper and got a response from CEO asking for details about the low rates. CEO Replied again updating me on the efforts. PRAYING to The Father Jehovah above and Jesus Christ’s real love in keeping America Rolling! Note fyi…trucks earned more prior to 1980’s because of set ICC freight rates knowing Trucking is essential, but then deregulation hit and this is the result. This was predicted by RALPH Fuller, ICC rate man retired from Railroad in 1991, telling me Truckers /trucking will destroy itself if freight rates are not updated accordingly! Also please know the mark up on major fuel prices, diesel should have never been over $1 per gallon. Now we pay for a discount marketing plan, playing the game, just kidding ourselves , with major truck stops taking more money we do not have to give. Thanks for letting me serve and share. Gid Bless. [email protected]

  2. Good afternoon, hey let’s be honest here! First of all the broker’s have a binding contract with the shipping companies. The price doesn’t change until the contract ends at the end of the year of which it started.
    Price gouging is pure GREED and DISRESPECT to the owner operators. The brokers are taking up to 65% of the load and giving O/O 35% of the load.
    How and why are they allowed to get away with this behavior?
    We truck drivers are not making this up! Just go look for yourself on DAT’s Load board.
    I’m fully aware that we O/O are essential, but we are treated like crap by the broker’s, and they are condescending as well!
    We need transparency in this industry, between the shipper and the broker. Brokers are entitled to 16% not 65%. They are not asset based, we O/O are.
    It’s about time for the FMCSA to monitor the brokers the same way they monitor the truck drivers.
    We O/O and trucker drivers keep this great country of ours, alive and well. We should be treated with respect, and paid fairly for the service that we provide to our country.
    This BROKER’s price Gouging must stop ASAP! They will put us out of business, if they are allowed to continue to do this.
    We need help! We need to be heard! We need a voice to represent us! If we shut down, the country will be shut down as well.
    Transparency is the key!!!! Maybe the trucking industry should be unionized!
    Hey let’s not forget about DAT’S Load board, who are they to determine/dictate the price per mile that we should get paid?
    Obviously they are not aware of the expenses that we encounter from origin to destination. Like tolls and gas.
    Example: pickup from Newark, NJ to Brooklyn, NY. 45 mile travel
    DAT- load board says $2.00 per mile so now the brokers offers us drivers $200.00 sounds good. but it’s not, not at all.
    To come into NYC we must go over the George Washington bridge they charge us tractor trailers $125.00 to enter NYC. plus $40.00 for the new Jersey turnpike tolls to go get this load.
    Now we have to pay $40.00 to enter Brooklyn, NY and $40.00 to leave Brooklyn, NY. now totaled that up. that’s comes to $245
    Not to mention gas, that easy another $30.00 to get to NYC. $275.00
    Broker paying $200.00
    Trucker expense $275.00
    So now I’m paying to deliver this load for the Broker….
    I’m coming out of my pocket to deliver this load for the broker.
    THAT’S WHY WE NEED TRANSPARENCY!!!!
    The BROKER’s are killing us O/O
    PLEASE HELP US!!!!!!!!! WE TRUCK DRIVERS DO KEEP THIS COUNTRY UP AND RUNNING…….

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