Truckers ask for transparency: ‘Hear me loud and clear, we are not leaving’

Truckers protest broker fees in D.C.

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Posted May 13, 2020 at 2:50pm

Corrected May 15 4:20 p.m. | “You wanted us to help you keep this nation running? We did, we have, we are, we’re still here. We need the president to answer our call,” truck owner Lana Danko said over the cacophony of horns answering protesters’ signs on Constitution Avenue.

The protesters have been demonstrating in Washington for over a week, putting pressure on officials to enforce transparency laws on brokers.

A group of truck drivers demonstrate along Constitution Avenue as they call for the Department of Justice to investigate illicit price gouging by freight brokers on Monday. (Caroline Brehman/CQ Roll Call/Pool)

The issue, truck drivers say, is that brokers, who contract with truckers to transport loads for businesses, are finding loopholes or outright ignoring the rule. Others, including Lisa Schmitt of Trucking Across America with the Schmitts, say they want the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration to amend the rule to require a proactive record be distributed after every transaction.

The broker transparency rule says that when brokers contract with truck drivers, the broker must keep a record and the drivers may request documentation for how much the broker is making on the load.

Not enforcing this law enables price gouging, something drivers say has only gotten worse during the pandemic.

Correction: This report was revised to reflect that the broker transparency rule allows both drivers and brokers to review documentation on transactions.