A finalized Electronic Logging Device (ELD) mandate from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is to be published by fourth quarter 2015. What can you expect and what should you know about the required equipment itself?
An ELD electronically captures a driver’s Record of Duty Status (RODS) to show compliance with required Hours-of-Service (HOS). The proposal in review, which is over 250 pages long, not only requires all drivers to eventually switch to electronic logs, but also includes technical standards for devices and details for regulators to confirm compliance.
Of course, the overriding benefit of an ELD is accuracy of information and elimination of fraud. It keeps drivers within required hours—reducing or eliminating the dangers caused by fatigue. In fact, FMCSA data shows a strong correlation between compliance with the HOS rules and lower crash rates. For fleets already using automatic on-board recording devices (AOBRDs) or ELD technology, complete compliance with new equipment standards won’t be required until late 2019, so you’ll have time to evolve processes, if necessary.
Here are the basics of the anticipated ruling’s requirements in relation to equipment. Acceptable ELDs must:
- Connect directly to the engine to record motion
- Allow drivers to indicate if they are on-duty, off-duty, or on-duty/not driving.
- Automatically record drive segments
- Provide graphic display of RODS, so a driver can easily track hours
- Place all data in a standardized format
- Transmit specific data to law enforcement, if required
- Include vendor certification that the device meets technical requirements
- Have a registration number posted to the FMCSA website
Of course, with over 250 pages in the ruling, we’ll all be facing a learning curve with implementation, but Canal will be here to help and that’s why there is a timeline for implementation. In the end, we’ll all see the positives: accuracy of records, accountability, and best of all, safety.