Starting today, Dec. 18, in accordance with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) congressionally mandated electronic logging device (ELD) compliance deadline, inspectors and roadside enforcement personnel throughout the United States will begin documenting ELD violations and may issue citations to commercial motor vehicle drivers operating vehicles without a compliant ELD (at the jurisdiction’s discretion). Any violation that is received will not impact a carrier’s safety record, nor result in an out-of-service in the near term, but could result in a fine.
Beginning on April 1, 2018, inspectors will start placing commercial motor vehicle drivers out of service if their vehicle is not equipped with the required ELD.
The ELD mandate does not change any of the underlying hours-of-service requirements.
Some operators may continue to use a grandfathered automatic onboard recording device (AOBRD) instead of ELDs until Dec. 16, 2019. The AOBRD must meet the requirements of 49 CFR 395.15.
THUS FAR, ALL LEGISLATIVE AND ADMINISTRATIVE EFFORTS TO DELAY OR REPEAL THE RULE HAVE FAILED. THE FINAL RULE IS NOW IN EFFECT.
If you are still looking for an ELD vendor, make sure you use one that is on the FMCSA list of certified vendors. To view the list of registered vendors, click here. A list of vendors who have had their registration revoked is also available here. Operators are responsible for ensuring that they are using a registered vendor for their ELD equipment. Using equipment from a vendor who is not registered is a violation.
In addition, FMCSA has released new guidance related to personal conveyance, and how ELDs are meant to apply to those situations where a commercial motor vehicle is being used for personal use. This guidance will be open for comment through Jan. 18, 2018. The new guidance can be accessed here.
A few key highlights to remember:
- ELDs are not required on vehicles that are older than model year 2000.
- Up to 8 documents must be retained as outlined under 395.11 to provide supporting documentation. Supporting documents will fall into 5 categories:
- Itineraries, schedules, or equivalent documents that indicate the origin and destination of each trip;
- Dispatch records, trip records, or equivalent documents;
- Expense receipts;
- Electronic mobile communication records, reflecting communications transmitted through a fleet management system;
- Payroll records, settlement sheets, or equivalent documents that indicate payments to a driver.
- Drivers will have up to 13 days to provide their record of duty status (RODs) and supporting documentation to their employer.
- An ELD must have a display screen or be able to print out RODs.
- Driver harassment is clearly defined; a prohibition on harassment is explicitly included in the new regulation; procedures to guard against harassment through the technology are spelled out; and a procedure for recourse is available for drivers if there is harassment.
- Anyone making edits to an ELD record must have a unique login ID. And drivers must be able to access their record without having to request access through another party.
Operators are also advised to equip their drivers with the following materials to assist with compliance:
- ELD User’s Manual;
- Instruction sheet on reporting ELD malfunctions & recordkeeping procedures during ELD malfunctions;
- Instructions on how to transfer ELD data electronically to an inspector.
- A supply of paper log books for at least 8 days of use, in case of ELD malfunction.
To assist with compliance, FMCSA recently published a new list of ELD FAQs. ABA and the Bus Industry Safety Council have provided a number of forums over the past couple of years to access information about the ELD rule and its nuances including presentations, webinars, articles and emailed notices.
Check out this special set of video FAQs with FMCSA technical experts and enforcement representatives from the 2017 Summer BISC meeting.
If you have additional questions about ELDs, please feel free to BISC-IT and send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. We have a number of experts who will be happy to assist you.
You can also visit a special FMCSA web page set up to detail ELD compliance.