What Are the New Rules for Electronic Logging Devices?

The electronic logging device mandate rules that all American commercial motor vehicles should have ELD to monitor drivers’ hours of service and guarantee they follow the labor regulations.

In December 2019, the final deadline was finalized, obliging all commercial fleets to have an ELD to monitor driver’s HOS.

In this post, we’ll take a closer look at what the new rules for ELD mean for commercial drivers, the type of information being monitored, and how fleets can guarantee they stay compliant with the new rules and guidelines.

What’s the Mandate on Electronic Logging Device?

The ELD mandate is one of the major modifications to have come out of the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act. It was signed into law way back in 2012, specifying that all commercial drivers in the United States should record their hours of service through ELD, as of December 16, 2019.

The mandate comes straight from the FMCSA. Given that it’s new, the roughly 3.5 million professional vehicle drivers in America are still grasping what the rules actually mean in practice. From state to state, trucking is the most typical job in the country.

However, it has not been automated and won’t be outsourced. Thus, the ELD mandate has a big, country-wide effect compared to any regulation in the past. Here’s what the new law works and what it suggests for all vehicle drivers in America.

What’s the reason for the introduction of the ELD Mandate?

The ELD mandate was launched to change previously existing and less exact ways of AOBRDs or EOBRs and paper logs that keep Record of Duty Statutes.

The rigorous and strict tracking of ELD could be utilized to stop employers from distressing their drivers and violating hours of service laws. As opposed to some rumors, the ELD mandate does not impact the federal laws in place about the driver’s HOS.

The official HOS stays the same but will be more easily enforced, big thanks to ELD’s automatic logging capabilities.

What are the specifications?

An ELD should be standardized to FMCSA’s specifications. The agency provides a searchable list of approved devices. Owners and operators should shoulder the price of installing ELD or face fines.

Most of the American operations today included ELD devices throughout the first several months of 2018. Other organizations were already utilizing AOBRDs to monitor their hours and were grandfathered into the mandate as a result. However, every commercial motor vehicle in the country now needs to have an ELD installed to completely comply along with the new ELD mandate.

How was the ELD mandate imposed?

Commercial vehicle enforcement authorities have been quite slow to impose the new regulation to enable operators and fleet owners time to adapt. Nonetheless, that window doesn’t last forever. Hence, anybody who is influenced by the newest law change must realize both how to comply with that rules and the possible penalties they will come across for failing to comply.

The first thing on a fleet’ operator’s agenda must be understanding how best to help drivers pass a roadside inspection on a traffic stop. That’s how the new ELD mandate will be imposed on the road. Below is the vital checklist that any American fleet operators will require to guarantee their vehicles will pass the inspection:

  • The instruction sheet that details how to report any electronic logging device malfunctions
  • An ELD user manual
  • Paper log sheets to utilize as a fail-safe
  • A regulation-compliant registered and certified ELD
  • The instruction sheet that outlines the data transfer mechanisms supported by the ELD and the best way to send the driver’s information to an authorized safety authority

On the other side of the operation, the motor carrier ought to have one thing on hand: every ELD RODS data and backup information for the past six months. That information might need to be made accessible to FMCSA. That’s true even though the agency will not keep any of that data except they’re processing a violation related to it.

What’s more, supporting documents must be kept on hand as well. Take note that FMCSA needs them to confirm on-duty-not-driving-time and could involve the following:

  • Payroll records
  • Electronic mobile communication records
  • Expense receipts
  • Documents, schedules, and itineraries citing trip origin and destination

What are the consequences of not complying?

Drivers without a compliant ELD will face a violation that covers HOS violations. They should expect the following outcome if a non-exempt driver is halted for a roadside inspection and doesn’t have a compliant ELD:

  • A citation from the inspector for failing to have the record of duty status
  • The driver will be placed OOS for ten hours or eight hours if the car is a passenger carrier
  • The driver ought to complete their existing trip through paper logs once back in service
  • The driver ought to present the inspector a copy of the earlier inspection report if stopped again




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