The boom of logistics resulted in trucking companies requiring more than one driver. It is quite difficult to keep track of a driver’s records since they’re on the go. Today, tracking the hours of a professional driver’s hours of service compliance has been made easy by the ELD mandate. This device helped made the process more convenient, and unquestionably lowered the expenses of motor carriers.
- 1 What is the ELD Mandate?
- 2 What is an ELD?
- 3 Where To Get An ELD Device
- 4 How to be ELD compliant
What is the ELD Mandate?
The ELD Mandate necessitates commercial vehicles to utilize an electronic logging device instead of a paper logbook for the hours of service compliance. The purpose of this mandate is to improve driver safety by complying with the HOS requirements.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) mandated the use of electronic logging devices for most commercial motor vehicles creating a safe, convenient, and efficient working environment for drivers, trucking company owners, and fleet managers.
What is an ELD?
An electronic logging device is attached to the commercial motor vehicle (CMV) and is synchronized with the engine making it possible to record vehicle movements. Throughout the day, the ELD records all driving activities, which include driving time, location, number of miles driven, engine hours, etc. it also detects malfunctions and maintenance issues.
ELDs are a division of AOBORDs (Automatic On-Board Recording Device), which is a device that is used to record the duty status of the driver accurately. AOBORDs include ELDs and EOBRs (Electronic On-Board Recorders).
Where To Get An ELD Device
There are a lot of ELD providers that offer ELD devices at a low cost. It is your responsibility to be able to find a provider that complies with the ELD requirements. Samsara is one of those providers who are compliant with this mandate. Even in locations that have no cell coverage, Samsara’s ELD can still maintain compliance. If you have considered getting your ELD from this company, you can read more about this on Samsara.
How to be ELD compliant
Just like any other process, the ELD mandate requires a few steps to take and documents to be provided. The essential information of the ELD mandate is as listed below.
1. Driver’s Information
A motor carrier must make sure the driver’s data is reported accurately. This includes:
The driver’s name
A unique ELD username
Valid driver’s license number
Driver’s license issuing state
2. Non-exempt Drivers
The ELD applies to most motor carriers and drivers who are required to provide and maintain records of duty status (RODS). These are truck drivers, commercial bus drivers, and Canada- and Mexico-domiciled drivers.
3. Who are exempted from the ELD Rule
Ideally, drivers who use timecards are exempted from keeping records of duty status or using ELDs. The following drivers are exempted from the use of ELDs:
Drivers who, out of every 30 days, use paper RODS for not more than eight days.
Drivers who are under short-haul exceptions
Drivers who operate drive-away-tow-away procedures wherein the vehicle being driven is the vehicle being delivered.
Drivers who drive vehicles manufactured before the year 2000, which may not be able to connect to the ELD device
4. Driver Status
Drivers are obliged to record their status on the ELD. These are the applicable status designations:
OFF- off duty
SB – sleeper berth
D – Driving
ON – on duty but not driving as of the moment
Every time the driver changes his status, the ELD automatically records the location (city, state). If the area is not within a city or town, the highway number and nearest milepost are recorded.
5. ELD User Documents to have onboard a driver’s commercial motor vehicle
If you are a driver of a commercial motor vehicle that uses an ELD, you are required to possess an ELD information packet which contains the following documents:
User’s manual for instructions of the operation of the ELD
Guidelines on the mechanisms of data transfer as well as for directions to produce and transfer the driver’s HOR records to an authorized safety official
Instructions for record-keeping and reporting ELD malfunctions
Blank RODS graph-grids which are enough to record input the driver’s record of duty status and other related information for a minimum of 8 days
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6. Supporting Documents
Supporting documents are essential to verify a driver’s record of duty status. Supporting documents consist of five categories:
Schedules, itineraries, bills of lading, and other documents which serve as proof of the origin and destination of each trip
Dispatch documents and trip records
Receipt for expenses within hours of duty
Communication records through electronic mobile or other records that reflect communications transmitted through a fleet management system
Payroll records or other documents that mention how a driver was paid
7. Data Storage Requirements
A motor carrier must keep an ELD record of duty status data and back-up data for six months as well as the driver’s supporting documents. However, the back-up data must be retained on a separate device from the device where the original data are stored. Drivers must be able to access their own records without having to go through the motor carrier. The records must also be retained in a manner that protects the privacy of the driver.
8. Implications of Non-compliance
If a non-exempt driver cannot provide an ELD-compliant log after the deadline, fines may be issued to the motor carrier. Occasionally, trucks may be required to stop operations for up to 10 hours. If it is identified that the ELD device does not comply with the ELD requirements, the carriers are given eight days to replace the device or find a solution to meet the requirements.
With the ELD Mandate, working has been made suitable for drivers and trucking companies. As long as you find a company that offers a functional and compliant electronic logging device, nothing will go wrong with your vehicle operations.