Revisions To FMCSA Federal Hours Of Service Rules

In the recent weeks the trucking industry has been praised for being a key component to the economy. As it employs over seven million people and moves approximately 70% of the nation’s domestic freight, many have found that during an unprecedented time, it was truly an essential industry. With this being said, to help allow the commercial transportation to keep moving some modifications to regulations and rules have been made. 


Hours Of Service Modifications 

On May 14, 2020, the FMCSA announced that there would be upcoming changes to the Federal Hours of Service Rules for commercial driving. Such updates are expected to modernize the HOS regulations and provide the U.S. economy as well as American consumers an estimated $274 million in annualized savings. The revisions were previously discussed and reviewed by the FMCSA in August of 2019. Below are the four main revisions. 

  • Adjustments for the 30-minute break rule so safety and flexibility can improve
    • After 8 hours of consecutive driving, a driver is able to use their required break as being on-duty but not driving rather than being off-duty
  • Drivers will be able to split their required 10 hours off-duty into two periods (either an 8/2 split or 7/3 split) with a sleeper-berth exception 
    • Neither split will count against the driver’s 14 hour driving window 
  • The maximum window of when driving is permitted will be modified to extend by two hours
  • For certain commercial drivers, the short-haul exception will change by lengthening the drivers’ maximum on-duty period to 14 hours (from 12 hours) and extend the distance limit to 150 air miles (from 100 air miles)


It is important to note that the removal of a key point of the 30 minute to 3 hour pause to the work day from The Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) is not part of the Final Rule.

These modifications will go into effect on September 29, 2020. 

For more information about these modifications and other news or regulations pertaining to the commercial transportation industry, visit: FMCSA’s Website


How The Commercial Transportation Industry Will Be Affected 

Since there is more focus to ensure that drivers are having adequate sleep and rest while they are on the road to reduce fatigue related road incidents, fleet managers can’t risk falling behind on ever-changing rules. When discussing these new changes, it’s important for commercial drivers to understand how their fleet technology may be impacted. 


Rulesets For Electronic Logging Devices 

For those using Geotab Drive ELD’s, Geotab has noted their commitment to following ANPRM and NPRM processes with Partners and associations. Meaning they are making relevant changes to the device rulesets in time for it to be used by the official effective date (September 29, 2020). As a long time partner of Geotab, we can ensure that our customers who use these devices have nothing to worry about and should keep their eyes open for further communication about device ruleset updates! 


Interested to learn more about how your fleet can better abide to strict regulations, save hundreds of dollars or even improve the driving conditions of your team? Contact us today! Regardless of your needs, we have consultants who specializes in every aspect of your fleet who can help! 

HOS Relief Amid COVID-19 Outbreak

As the concern of the COVID-19 outbreak continues to worsen, many are looking at how businesses can be provided with additional relief during this time. While there are initiatives in place to help small businesses who had to close their doors to practice social distancing and slow the spread, there is additional aid that focuses on the demand for essential supplies. Specifically, focusing on increasing the amount of supplies and equipment transported daily by waiving hours-of-service (HOS) regulations. 


Below are updates in both Canada and the United States: 


HOS in the United States 


Earlier this month, on March 13, it was announced that the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) will adjust the HOS regulations. They will help those in the US transportation sector provide more assistance to relief efforts of the virus. Until April 12, 2020, or when the COVID-19 emergency is terminated, a FMCSA Emergency Declaration has been issued and will be in place nation-wide to suspend the hours-of-service regulations for drivers. 


Prior to adjusting any processes within your fleet, make sure you familiarize yourself and your team with the Emergency Declaration as the FMCSA has specific criteria on what will allow a carrier to be eligible. 


Find the Declaration here: Emergency Declaration


HOS in Canada 


Similarly, Transport Canada has issued an exception to help provide COVID-19 relief to Canadian truck drivers moving essential supplies. Again, drivers who meet specific criteria will be exempt from hours-of-services requirements when carriers who are federally regulated give advance notice with specific information regarding which vehicles will be partaking in it. This waiver will be in effect from March 24, until April 30, 2020. 


Again, prior to implementing any new initiatives related to HOS, it is recommended that you familiarize yourself and your team with the Essential Freight Transport Exemption. As there is specific criteria that must be met prior to being safely exempt, understanding the exemption in-full is critical. 


Find the Exemption here: Essential Freight Transport Exemption


As information and plans are in constant flux during this time, we always recommend for businesses and fleet drivers to stay up-to-date with ongoing news and regulations. This will ensure that compliance is always met and teams are working efficiently. 


Additional Resources To Follow: 

Truckload Carriers Association:

Canadian Trucking Alliance:

ELD Enforcement | ELD for Light Duty Trucks vs. Heavy Duty Trucks

It has been a few weeks since the FMCSA started enforcing ELD for light duty trucks and heavy duty trucks. Since April 1, officers issued fines for ELD violations. How are carriers doing so far?

Compliance Rates

According to CarrierLists, ELD compliance is high. As of an April 2nd survey, 91% of carriers have complied with regulations. Beyond national numbers, what are some trends?

Compliance Rates

Image Source: Carrier List

Fleet Size

Fleet size used to be one of the biggest factors in ELD compliance. Not anymore! Whereas earlier in 2017 when half of smaller fleets were not compliant, around 90% of small fleets are now compliant.


A bigger factor in ELD compliance is fleet location. According to the survey, some states reported a 100% compliance rate. In other states, however, compliance rates were as low as 60%. In comparison, the average state compliance rate is 90%.

Fleet Type

Finally, fleet type impacts compliance. Fleets that have dry vans and reefer trucks lead compliance rates. Meanwhile, flatbed, tank, and bulk fleets have lower compliance rates.


ELD compliance, for the most part, has been smooth. Even drivers are warming up to ELDs. In 2017, some drivers and organizations held protests and even complained to the Supreme Court. In 2018, however, many drivers have adopted ELDs without disturbing their daily lives.

One of the remaining challenges for getting ELD compliance to 100% is educating the industry. For instance, one of the biggest questions is if businesses need to install an ELD for light duty trucks.

Are there any ELD exemptions for light duty trucks?

When are light duty trucks exempt from ELDs? This should really be a 2-part question.

ELD exemptions for light duty trucks

Firstly, we have to determine if the light duty vehicle classifies as a commercial motor vehicle (CMV).

A light duty vehicle is considered a CMV if:

  • Weight: The vehicle and the combined weight of all attachments exceeds 10,000 pounds.
  • Passengers: The vehicle carries more than 9 paying passengers or more than 16 non-paying passengers.
  • Liability: The vehicle transports anything hazardous.

If a vehicle meets any of the criteria, it is classified as a CMV. CMVs are required to record hours of service.

Secondly, we need to determine if the CMV is required to use ELDs. Generally, light duty CMVs are required to use an ELD for light duty trucks. However, there are a few exceptions including:

  • Drivers that keep HOS records for less than 8 days in any 30-day period.
  • Vehicles that are older than 2000.
  • Operations that falls under the “short haul exemption”. Short haul exemption means that: (1) CDL drivers operate within 100 miles or non-CDL drivers operate within 150 miles; (2) vehicles start and stop at the same location; and (3) drivers drive for less than 11 hours, while taking at least 10 hours of break before their next shift.

Are there any differences between ELDs for light duty trucks and ELDs for heavy duty vehicles?

For the most part, ELDs for light duty vehicles are the same with ELDs for heavy duty vehicles. The biggest difference, however, would be installation.

Most light duty vehicles have an OBDii connector port. ELD devices can then directly connect into the OBDii port.

On the other hand, heavy duty vehicles usually do not have an OBDii port. In that case, installers can use adaptors such as 9-pin cables.

ELDs for heavy duty vehicles

Disclaimer: Although “ELD for Light Duty Trucks vs Heavy Duty Vehicles” contains research notes from the FMCSA, the article is not a substitute for professional legal advice.

CarrierLists: ELD Adoption Survey Results
FMCSA: Hours of Service

The ELD Final Rule Has Arrived! (Finally)

The ELD Final Rule has finally been released by the FMCSA.


On December 10th, 2015, the FMCSA announced the new ELD mandate. It is expected to save 26 lives, prevent 562 injuries, avoid 1,844 crashes, and result in savings of over $1 billion dollars in paperwork on an annual basis.

It’s also estimated that nationwide about 3 million drivers will be affected by this new legislation.

You can check out the full release from the FMCSA here.


ELD Solutions Already Available

ELD Final Rule HOS Solution

Geotab Drive, our comprehensive ELD solution, is already available in both the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store. The application connects to the GPS GO device in order to provide an automated process for creating accurate records of the drivers time spent in each duty status. The system is very user-friendly and allows drivers to spend more time completing their daily tasks by simplifying the annoyance of always documenting their time. Through this automated process, fleets are finding as much as en extra hour a day! That directly translates into added productivity.


Geotab Drive is BYOD


One of the core features that make Geotab Drive stand out from it’s competitors is that it’s a BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) solution.

ELD Final Rule Geotab Drive

  • Support off-the-shelf iOS and Android tablets
  • Plug-and-play, easy installation (no roof mounted antennas necessary)
  • Flexible open platform for adding and removing rulesets in case regulations change
  • Create driver applications using Geotab’s open APIs and SDK
  • One device runs all the driver’s favourite driver applications
  • Over-the-air firmware and software updates


Geotab Drive Benefits


  • US Federal FMCSA 395.15 compliant
  • Track regulated driver’s time spent in each duty status
  • Automatic duty status changes: Driving to On Duty; On Duty to Driving
  • Alerts for drivers not logged in
  • Violation alerts
  • 16 hour day support
  • Co-Driver support
  • Platform for dispatch application support
  • Platform for future rule support
  • Adverse weather condition support
  • Visibility in MyGeotab reporting of driver logs, violations, and remaining hours

The ELD Final Rule is not going to be pushed back any longer, so why not start using an electronic logging device (ELD) now? You are going to have to in the near future, and it will save you both time and money over using paper logs.

Speak with a specialized fleet consultant today to find out whether the ELD Final Rule affects you.


Contact a Fleet Consultant | Phone: 1-888-998-1122

Risk Management: Improve Compliance, Lower Insurance Costs

A poor safety rating can be crippling to a business. Orkin, the 20th largest fleet in the world knows this all too well. The sustainability of Orkin’s entire business was threatened by a poor safety rating. At one point 7% of Orkin’s entire revenue was going towards insurance and claims. A strict culture of safe driving was introduced through a comprehensive fleet & risk management program. Since implementing this program into their fleet 11 years ago, Orkin has saved as much as $40 million per year or $6000+/vehicle.

The margin for error within driver safety and compliance becomes narrower every year. Any tickets, accidents or claims impacts the entire company and forces harsher penalties, liability, and ultimately higher overall operating costs. Take a look at the action steps below, to see how we recommend our clients work towards running a safer fleet.


  • Post a weekly driver scorecard report for drivers and management. This report measures driver risk by each driver. Risky driving habits such as speeding, seat-belt use, harsh-braking and backing-up when leaving are measured.
  • Allow drivers to self-evaluate and make efforts to improve poor driving habits.
  • Define penalties around unsafe driving which puts your company at risk. Communicate that unsafe driving will not be tolerated.
  • Develop baseline measurements of driving habits through a driver scorecard. Evaluate current liability and insurance costs. Set goals for improvement based on the measurements and measure against these goals at 3-6-12 month intervals.
  • Implement driver training for high risk drivers. A study by SAFED showed that the average driver reduces fuel consumption by over 10% following fuel efficient driver training. Additionally driver training reduces risk and claims by as much as 50%.


  • Call your insurance company. Evaluate potential insurance savings with your insurance company based on reduced liability.
  • GoFleet has developed an insurance discount partnership with multiple providers. Potential insurance discount can range from 10-40% on insurance premiums for fleets.


New CSA / DOT compliance requirements mandate Hours of Service (HOS / Driver Log) and Driver Vehicle Inspection Reports (DVIR) for specific types of commercial fleets (typically applying to heavy duty logistics fleets). These mandates help ensure drivers are not driving fatigued and that vehicles are being operated safely on the road. GoFleet offers HOS & DVIR compliance tools that are Android / Garmin / Mobile based.

Do you have HOS / DVIR requirements? Email us at [email protected] for more information or to get started.

Take A Closer Look At The ELD Geotab Drive

Electronic Logging Device: Geotab Drive



Update: Check out the most up to date post here: A Complete Guide to ELDs


Geotab Drive is a savvy Hours of Service electronic logging device (ELD) and vehicle inspection application.

The FMCSA regulates commercial driving; they are getting ready to release a new set of rules in September, 2015. The regulation changes add clarity around the types of devices, how they are allowed to communicate, and what and how data is presented. These regulations have been debated and argued for the last several years leaving the rules to be highly anticipated.

It is expected in September 2015 fleets will need to switch from paper to electronic logs and Geotab is working hard to ensure the devices are fully in compliance with the new ELD rules. Depending on whether or not fleets are already using electronic logs or are still using paper logs, the transition period slightly differs. Any Commercial Motor Vehicle (CMV) has to transition from paper logs to ELD within 2 years after the release date of the new rules. Fleets using an AOBRD on the date of the release of the new regulations have 4 years to make the transition to the new ELD rules.

The Benefits of Geotab Drive
Geotab Drive is currently available on the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store. The application connects to the GPS GO Device in order to provide an automated process for creating accurate records of the drivers time spent in each duty status: On Duty Not Driving, Driving, Sleeper Berth, and Off Duty. The system is very user friendly and gives drivers more time to complete their daily tasks by simplifying the annoyance of always documenting their time. Through automating vehicle inspection reporting and driver logs, and depending on the number of duty status changes required by the driver to record, fleets are finding as much as an extra hour a day! That translates into lots of added productivity, not to mention the increased accuracy of the reports.

Where is it heading?
These features provide some amazing advantages to fleets, however the future of Geotab Drive is even more compelling. There will be support for two-way messaging for safe communication with the driver and ease of dispatch. Just like the MyGeotab software offers add-in ability to the base software, Geotab Drive will soon have the same functionality. This will allow end user fleets and other value added partners to add functionality directly into the Drive application.

For example, an add-in that shows a driver how many deliveries he made today on-time, based on his scheduling and routing software, or how closely he met the estimated miles on the projected route from the scheduling and routing program. Another option would be to provide the driver interface to a dispatch application where a driver has one application for all of his or her in-vehicle needs for HOS and dispatch.


Original Article By: Stephanie Voelker, Sales Manager at Geotab

FMCSA Proposed Mandate of Electronic Logging Devices

Electronic Logging Devices Proposed to Improved Efficiency and Safety

On March 13th, The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) issued a revised proposal to mandate that electronic logging devices be installed in interstate commercial buses and trucks.

The requirement would reduce paperwork burdens on carriers, help enforce hours-of-service rules, and ensure that drivers are not harassed, FMCSA said.

The new proposal supplements FMCSA’s February 2011 proposal. FMCSA stopped work on that requirement in 2012 after a federal court ruled that a previous regulation mandating the devices for some carriers did not properly prevent the ELDs from being used to harass drivers.

“Today’s proposal will improve safety while helping businesses by cutting unnecessary paperwork” Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said in a statement. “By leveraging innovative technology with electronic logging devices, we have the opportunity to save lives and boost efficiency for both motor carriers and safety inspectors.”

The proposal addresses new technical specifications for ELDs, clarifies hours-of-service supporting document requirements, mandates ELDs for drivers currently using record of duty status, and outlines technical and procedural provisions aimed at ensuring ELDs are not used to harass vehicle operators.

“By implementing electronic logging devices, we will advance our mission to increase safety and prevent fatigued drivers from getting behind the wheel,” FMCSA Administrator, Anne Ferro said. “With broad support from safety advocates, carriers and members of Congress, we are committed to achieving this important step in the commercial bus and truck industries.”

In an effort to lessen motor carriers’ and drivers’ fears, FMCSA said in its statement that the rule protects privacy because electronic logs would only be available to law enforcement or FMCSA during compliance reviews, roadside inspections, and post-crash investigations.

“American Trucking Association supports FMCSA’s efforts to mandate electronic logging devices in commercial vehicles as a way to improve safety and compliance in the trucking industry and to level the playing field with thousands for fleets that have already moved to this technology voluntarily,” American Trucking Association President Bill Graves said.

The rule would come with a new prohibition on carriers harassing drivers. This could carry up to an $11,000 fine. Carriers must allow drivers access to their logs, and the logging devices must be able to be muted when drivers are asleep.

Ultimately, The proposed rule will reduce hours-of-service violations by making it much harder for drivers to misrepresent their time on logbooks and avoid detection by law enforcement personnel and FMCSA. Analysis shows it will also help reduce crashes by fatigued drivers and approximately prevent 20 fatalities and 434 injuries each year for an annual safety benefit of $394.8 million.

The proposal will soon be published by FMCSA in the Federal Register, starting a 60-day period comment period for the public. The comments will then be considered by the agency before making the rule final.

As proposed, after FMCSA makes it final the mandate would take two years to take effect.

More information on Electronic Logging Devices and the Supplemental Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, visit:

FMCSA: DOT Proposes Use of Electronic Logbooks to Improve Efficiency & Safety
Transport Topics: FMCSA Proposes ELD Mandate for Nearly All Trucks

Electronic Log Mandate in Effect April 9th

Mandate for Electronic Log Devices or Electronic Onboard Recorders Soon In Effect

Please See Updated Article: Electronic Logging Devices Proposed by FMCSA

A rule mandating Electronic Log Devices or, Electronic Onboard Recorders as they are also known, is expected to be published April 9th 2014 according to a monthly report from the Department of Transportation. DOT has been pushing back the publication date for the rule since late 2013.

The mandate will require all drivers responsible for keeping records of duty status to use an electronic logging device. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration submitted the rule to the White House’s Office of Management and Budget (OMB) on August 7th 2013 with a projected publication date of November 18th 2013.

In the Department of Tranportation’s last report which was issued March 11th 2014, projects the rule will clear OMB on March 28th. The publication of the Supplemental Notice of Proposed Rulemaking projected for April 9th will follow. The proposal will then allow 60 days for public comment ending on the 9th of June.

Any comments will be taken into consideration before the agency would publish a final rule.

The Department of Transportation still also projects its driver coercion rule to be published on April 23rd 2014, The rule would create a requirement that the agency “consider whether coercion of drivers” by shippers, receivers, carriers or brokers “is a concern when developing a rule.” It too would have a 60-day comment period.

FMCSA’s Carrier Safety Fitness Determination rule proposal is, as per the report, still set to still be published August 4th 2014. The rule would change the agency’s data gathering process in regards to the way it calculates a carrier’s Safety Fitness Determination score. After the rule passes, if it does, the agency will use data from crashes, roadside inspections, violation history and investigations, nearly an identical data set used in calculating a Safety Measurement Scores in the agency’s Compliance, Safety, Accountability program.

Source: Overdrive Magazine

Who Says Hours-of-Service Compliance Has to be Difficult?

Hours-of-Service Made Easy With Our HOS Compliance Solution

Almost everyone in today’s society seems to have a smartphone or tablet device. In fact, a new study by the PEW Research Centre shows that over 90% of American adults own a cell phone, and that these devices are used for much more than just making phone calls. Companies are constantly developing apps to better capitalize on the ubiquity of mobile devices.

People continue to demand more and more from their technology – both in and out of the workplace. It is important for telematics providers to meet the needs of their customers and end-users. Geotab Drive – a recently developed app, which can be downloaded on Google’s PlayStore, has a multitude of features – including hours-of-service (HOS). This app is intended to comply with the DOT regulation needs of Truck companies, specifically in the USA.

Three important features make up our HOS solution:

  1. Compatability Geotab Drive is compatible with devices running Android 4.1 or higher. Preferably with a 7-inch screen and capactive touch screen. The device also must have a built in cellular modem (3G or LTE) and GP.
  2. FlexibilityEven if your dedicated HOS tablet were to stop working for whatever reason, the solution to the problem is as simple as pulling out another Android device with all the required specs and loading the Geotab Drive app on it. As long as you have a valid data connection, you can always login to sync with the server and instantly gain access to all your HOS and DVIR logs. You do not need to rely on a single device & you can easily switch from one device to another.
  3. CompliancyGoFleet certifies that the design of the HOS Solution has been sufficiently tested to meet the requirements of § 395.15 of 49 CFR Part 395 under the conditions it will be used.

Learn more about GoFleet’s HOS Compliance Solution here: HOS Compliance Solution or Contact Us!