ELD Mandate

Navigating the Impacts of the ELD Mandate on the Trucking Industry

The implementation of the Electronic Logging Device (ELD) Mandate has brought significant changes to the trucking industry. This article explores the impacts of the ELD Mandate, focusing on its implementation in the United States. Additionally, it compares the ELD regulations between the United States and Canada, highlighting differences in hours of service (HOS) regulations, technical specifications, device certification, and data transfer requirements. 

Furthermore, it delves into the compliance and enforcement procedures established by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) in the United States, along with the penalties for non-compliance.

Overview of the ELD Mandate Rollout in the United States:

The ELD Mandate, introduced by the FMCSA, requires commercial motor vehicle operators to use electronic logging devices to track and record their hours of service. This section provides an overview of the ELD Mandate’s implementation process, including key milestones and the timeline for compliance.

Comparison of Canadian and American ELD Mandate Regulations:

While the United States and Canada share similarities in their trucking industries, there are notable differences in their ELD regulations. This section explores the variations between the two countries, focusing on HOS regulations, technical specifications, device certification, and data transfer and storage requirements. By understanding these distinctions, trucking companies can navigate cross-border operations more effectively.

Differences in Hours of Service (HOS) Regulations:

The ELD Mandate has specific rules regarding drivers’ working hours and rest periods. This subsection highlights the differences in HOS regulations between the United States and Canada, such as maximum driving hours, mandatory break periods, and off-duty requirements.

Variations in Technical Specifications and Device Certification:

ELDs need to meet certain technical specifications and be certified for compliance. This subsection examines the divergences in technical requirements and certification processes for ELDs in the United States and Canada, considering factors like data accuracy, synchronization, and device compatibility.

Distinct Data Transfer and Storage Requirements:

The transfer and storage of electronic logs are crucial aspects of the ELD Mandate. This subsection explores the contrasting data transfer methods and storage requirements in the United States and Canada. It discusses the accepted formats for data transfer, retention periods, and accessibility for authorized personnel.

ELD Mandate Compliance and Enforcement Procedures in the United States:

Ensuring compliance with the ELD Mandate is essential for trucking companies operating in the United States. This section outlines the guidelines established by the FMCSA to ensure adherence to ELD regulations and mitigate non-compliance risks.

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) Guidelines:

The FMCSA has provided guidelines and resources to assist motor carriers and drivers in complying with the ELD Mandate. This subsection highlights the key guidelines and recommendations, including the proper use of ELDs, training requirements, and recordkeeping obligations.

ELD Mandate Penalties for Non-compliance:

Non-compliance with the ELD Mandate can result in penalties and sanctions. This subsection explores the potential consequences of non-compliance, such as fines, out-of-service orders, and negative safety ratings. It also discusses strategies to avoid penalties and maintain compliance.

The ELD Mandate has significantly impacted the trucking industry, particularly in the United States. By understanding the ELD regulations, differences between the United States and Canada, and compliance and enforcement procedures, trucking companies can adapt to the changes effectively, ensure regulatory compliance, and optimize their operations in an increasingly digitized environment.

Exemptions, Benefits, and Impacts on the Trucking Industry

The ELD Mandate has reshaped the trucking industry by introducing electronic logging devices (ELDs) to track and record hours of service (HOS). This article explores two key aspects of the ELD Mandate: exemptions and exceptions to the mandate, and the benefits it brings to the industry. Additionally, it examines the profound impacts of the ELD Mandate, ranging from improved road safety and enhanced driver health to streamlined operations and increased productivity.

I. Exemptions and Exceptions to the Mandate:

While the ELD Mandate applies to most commercial motor vehicle operators, there are specific exemptions and exceptions that warrant consideration. This section delves into the various categories of exemptions and exceptions, providing insights into situations where certain vehicles or drivers may be exempt from using ELDs.

A. Exemptions:

  1. Short-haul Exemption: This subsection explores the exemption for drivers operating within a 150 air-mile radius and who meet specific criteria regarding duration and frequency of their operations.
  2. Driveaway-Towaway Exemption: This subsection explains the exemption for drivers involved in the transport of vehicles where the truck being driven is the commodity being delivered.
  3. Pre-2000 Model Year Exemption: This subsection discusses the exemption for commercial motor vehicles with engine model years predating 2000.

B. Exceptions:

  1. Personal Conveyance Exception: This subsection delves into the personal conveyance exception, which allows drivers to operate their commercial vehicles for personal purposes without it counting against their HOS limits.
  2. Yard Move Exception: This subsection explores the yard move exception, which permits drivers to move their vehicles on private property for short distances without switching to on-duty status.

II. Benefits of the ELD Mandate:

The ELD Mandate brings forth a range of benefits for the trucking industry, positively impacting various aspects. This section highlights the advantages that arise from the implementation of ELDs.

A. Improved Road Safety and Reduced Accidents:

By accurately tracking and monitoring HOS, ELDs contribute to enhanced road safety. This subsection explores how ELDs help prevent driver fatigue, reduce instances of HOS violations, and improve compliance with road safety regulations.

B. Enhanced Driver Health and Well-being:

ELDs play a crucial role in promoting the health and well-being of drivers. This subsection discusses how ELDs contribute to better work-life balance, more predictable schedules, reduced stress, and improved overall driver health.

C. Streamlined Operations and Increased Productivity:

The implementation of ELDs leads to streamlined operations and increased productivity for trucking companies. This subsection explores how ELDs facilitate efficient dispatching, accurate tracking of vehicle locations, automated recordkeeping, and improved communication between drivers and fleet managers.

The ELD Mandate has transformed the trucking industry, bringing exemptions and exceptions to accommodate specific scenarios. Additionally, it offers numerous benefits, including improved road safety, enhanced driver health and well-being, and streamlined operations leading to increased productivity. By understanding these exemptions, exceptions, and benefits, trucking companies can navigate the ELD Mandate effectively, capitalize on its advantages, and foster a safer and more efficient industry landscape.

The ELD Mandate

The ELD Mandate: What It Is and Why It’s Important

The ELD Mandate is a game-changing regulation transforming the trucking industry and establishing new standards for compliance. The Electronic Logging Device (ELD) is a technological solution designed to accurately record and manage a commercial motor vehicle (CMV) driver’s Hours of Service (HOS). An ELD connects to a vehicle’s engine to automatically collect data on driving time, engine hours, vehicle movement, and miles driven. The primary purpose of implementing ELDs is to enhance safety on the roads by preventing fatigue-related accidents caused by drivers exceeding their allowable hours of service.

Both Canada and the United States have implemented regulations related to ELDs to ensure compliance and uniformity in the trucking industry. In the United States, the ELD mandate was established by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) and went into effect on December 18, 2017. The mandate requires CMV drivers to use approved ELDs to track and record their hours of service. Similarly, in Canada, the Electronic Logging Device (ELD) Mandate was introduced by Transport Canada and became effective on June 12, 2021. This mandate also requires CMV drivers to utilize compliant ELDs for recording their hours of service.

Compliance with the ELD mandate is of utmost importance for both drivers and carriers in the trucking industry. By adhering to the regulations, drivers can ensure they are not exceeding their allowable hours of service, which helps prevent fatigue-related accidents and promotes road safety. Additionally, complying with the ELD mandate allows carriers to enhance operational efficiency, streamline data collection, and reduce paperwork. Non-compliance with the mandate can result in penalties, fines, and even suspension of operations, underscoring the significance of embracing this technology and adhering to the regulatory requirements.

In this post, we will explore the key differences between the Canadian and American ELD mandates, delve into the technical requirements and certification processes, discuss the benefits of implementing ELDs in the trucking industry, and provide insights on how to choose the right ELD solution for your fleet. By understanding the ELD mandates in both countries and the importance of compliance, stakeholders in the trucking industry can navigate this regulatory landscape effectively while prioritizing safety, efficiency, and compliance.

Overview of the ELD mandate in Canada and the United States

The implementation of the Electronic Logging Device (ELD) mandate in both Canada and the United States represents a significant regulatory shift in the transportation industry. The mandates aim to improve road safety, enhance compliance with Hours of Service (HOS) regulations, and streamline the monitoring and recording of driver activity.

In the United States, the ELD mandate went into effect on December 18, 2017, as part of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) efforts to modernize the tracking of driver hours and increase safety on the roads. The mandate requires most commercial motor vehicle (CMV) drivers to use certified ELDs that meet specific technical standards. It applies to drivers who are currently required to maintain records of duty status (RODS) under HOS regulations.

The ELD mandate in the United States mandates that ELDs record and retain data regarding driving time, engine hours, vehicle movement, and other relevant information automatically. It ensures accurate tracking of a driver’s hours, duty status changes, and adherence to rest and break requirements. The ELDs must be registered and certified with the FMCSA to ensure they meet the required standards.

Similarly, in Canada, the ELD mandate came into effect on June 12, 2021, introduced by the Canadian Council of Motor Transport Administrators (CCMTA). The mandate applies to federally regulated motor carriers and requires them to use certified ELDs to capture and report driver HOS information. It aims to harmonize the ELD regulations across the country and improve compliance with HOS regulations.

Under the Canadian ELD mandate, ELDs must meet technical standards approved by the CCMTA. They must record driving time, on-duty time, off-duty time, and other required information accurately and reliably. The mandate sets guidelines for data transfer methods, device tampering prevention, and driver training on ELD usage.

Both the United States and Canada’s ELD mandates have specific timelines for compliance, exemptions, and provisions for enforcement. Fleet operators and drivers are required to understand the regulations, select certified ELDs, and ensure compliance with the respective mandates to avoid penalties and maintain operational efficiency.

Importance of compliance with the ELD mandate

Compliance with the Electronic Logging Device (ELD) mandate holds significant importance in the transportation industry, as it ensures adherence to Hours of Service (HOS) regulations, promotes road safety, enhances operational efficiency, and streamlines record-keeping processes. By mandating the use of ELDs, regulatory authorities in Canada and the United States aim to modernize and standardize the tracking and reporting of driver activities. Let’s delve into the specific importance of compliance with the ELD mandate and the benefits it brings to fleet operators and drivers.

Accurate HOS Compliance:

One of the primary objectives of the ELD mandate is to enforce accurate compliance with HOS regulations. By requiring the use of certified ELDs, regulatory authorities aim to eliminate the manual recording of driver activities and minimize the potential for errors or falsification of logbooks. ELDs automatically capture and store data related to driving time, rest periods, and breaks, ensuring accurate and reliable records. This promotes compliance with HOS limits, preventing excessive driving hours and reducing the risk of driver fatigue-related accidents.

Enhanced Road Safety:

Compliance with the ELD mandate significantly contributes to improving road safety. ELDs play a crucial role in preventing driver fatigue, a leading cause of accidents in the transportation industry. By accurately tracking and limiting the driving hours, ELDs help ensure that drivers take adequate rest breaks and comply with rest period regulations. This promotes driver alertness, reduces the likelihood of fatigue-related incidents, and enhances overall road safety for both drivers and other road users.

Streamlined Record-Keeping:

Manual record-keeping using traditional paper-based logbooks can be time-consuming, error-prone, and susceptible to tampering or falsification. Compliance with the ELD mandate streamlines record-keeping processes by automating data collection and storage. ELDs generate electronic logs that offer greater accuracy, transparency, and reliability compared to paper logs. This simplifies record-keeping for fleet operators, eliminates the need for manual calculations, and reduces the administrative burden associated with maintaining and reviewing paper logbooks.

Operational Efficiency:

ELDs bring significant benefits in terms of operational efficiency for fleet operators. By automating the recording and tracking of driver activities, ELDs provide real-time data on vehicle usage, driver availability, and HOS compliance. This enables fleet managers to make informed decisions regarding load assignments, route planning, and scheduling, optimizing resource allocation and reducing downtime. The accurate data provided by ELDs also facilitates better fleet management practices, allowing operators to identify inefficiencies, monitor driver performance, and implement strategies for improvement.

Compliance with Regulatory Requirements:

Complying with the ELD mandate is crucial for fleet operators to meet regulatory requirements and avoid penalties. Non-compliance with the mandate can result in fines, citations, or even the suspension of operations. By implementing certified ELDs and ensuring adherence to the regulations, fleet operators can demonstrate their commitment to safety, compliance, and accountability. It also provides a competitive advantage when bidding for contracts or working with clients who prioritize compliance standards.

Challenges and Considerations:

Implementing ELDs in Canada may present certain challenges that fleet operators should be aware of. Firstly, there may be an initial adjustment period for drivers and dispatchers as they adapt to the new technology and workflows. Proper training and education on ELD usage and functionalities can help alleviate these challenges. Additionally, there may be concerns regarding the cost of acquiring and installing ELD devices, as well as ongoing subscription fees for ELD services. However, it is essential to view these costs as investments in safety, compliance, and long-term operational efficiency.

Compliance with the ELD mandate also facilitates better data management and analysis. ELDs generate electronic logs that capture and store data in a standardized format. This data can be easily accessed and analyzed to gain valuable insights into driver behavior, performance, and operational patterns. Fleet operators can use this information to identify areas for improvement, optimize routes, and make data-driven decisions to enhance overall efficiency and productivity.

Furthermore, compliance with the ELD mandate can improve communication and collaboration within the industry. Since ELDs provide real-time data on driver availability and HOS compliance, it becomes easier for fleet managers and dispatchers to plan and allocate resources effectively. They can make informed decisions on load assignments, dispatching routes, and scheduling, ensuring efficient utilization of assets and reducing idle time.

Compliance with the ELD mandate also enhances accountability and transparency in the industry. Electronic logs generated by ELDs serve as reliable records that can be easily audited and reviewed. Authorities can quickly access and verify driver logs during inspections or investigations, ensuring compliance with regulations and deterring any attempts of logbook manipulation or falsification.

Moreover, compliance with the ELD mandate fosters a culture of safety within the organization. When fleet operators prioritize and invest in compliance, it sends a clear message to drivers that their safety and well-being are paramount. This can lead to a positive shift in driver behavior, increased awareness of HOS limits, and a collective commitment to upholding safety standards.

ELD Mandate Exemptions: What You Need to Know

Electronic Logging Devices (ELDs) are required for most commercial motor vehicles in North America. But what about those who don’t need an ELD? Are there any ELD Mandate exemptions? Who is exempt from the ELD rule and why? 

In this article, we delve into these questions and more, providing a comprehensive overview of ELD regulations and exemptions.

What is an Electronic Logging Device (ELD)? 

An ELD is a device that electronically records a truck driver’s hours of service (HOS). This helps fleet managers and drivers stay compliant with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) regulations that limit how long a driver can operate without taking a break. 

The FMCSA requires all commercial motor vehicles to be equipped with an ELD, unless they meet certain exemptions. 

Who does the ELD Rule impact? 

The rule applies to most interstate truck drivers operating in the U.S., as well as their employers. This includes commercial trucks over 10,000 lbs, vehicles designed or used to transport 16 or more passengers (including the driver), and vehicles transporting hazardous materials that require placards. The rule does not apply to drivers operating solely in intrastate commerce. (In Canada, the ELD Mandate was developed and released through Transport Canada.) 

Who is exempt from the ELD rule? 

There are a few categories of drivers who are exempt from having an ELD in their vehicle, including: 

  • Vehicles Manufactured Before 2000: These vehicles do not have an engine control module that can support electronic logging devices, so they are exempt from the mandate.   
  • Driveaway-towaway Drivers: Drivers who are transporting vehicles under their own power, such as car haulers and tow truck operators, are exempt from having an ELD.
  • Drivers Who Keep RODS for 8 Days or Less: If a driver keeps Record of Duty Status (RODS) for 8 days or less per month, then they do not need an ELD.   
  • Exceptions for Short-Distance Hauls: Drivers who complete trips within 150 air miles from their normal work reporting location may be exempt from using an ELD if they return to their starting point at the end of each day’s work shift. This exception also applies to agricultural operations within a 100 air mile radius and only during harvest season as determined by state law or regulation.  

What Trucks Are ELD Exempt? 

Certain types of trucks are exempt from needing an ELD due to their nature of operations or type of cargo being hauled. Examples include emergency vehicles such as fire trucks and ambulances; military trucks; recreational vehicles; mobile medical units; and tankers carrying gasoline, oil, propane gas etc., if they have been inspected according to federal regulations within 30 days before driving on public roads/highways. A full list of exemptions can be found here.

Is it necessary to keep paper logs if I am exempt?   

Yes! All drivers must still maintain written logs while operating in accordance with FMCSA regulations, even if they are exempted from using an ELD device. A paper log book provides proof that you have complied with FMCSA rules when you were unable to use your device for whatever reason (e.g., technical issues). It also serves as evidence should you ever get pulled over by law enforcement officers and asked for your logbook information or proof that you haven’t violated any laws by driving beyond your limits without taking breaks .    

ELD FAQs 

Q: What is the purpose of the ELD mandate?

A: The ELD mandate was created in an effort to reduce paperwork and improve safety standards by eliminating paper logbooks. Specifically, it requires most truck drivers to use ELDs while on the road, ensuring they are not exceeding federal hours-of-service limits for their workday. It also requires ELDs to be connected to the vehicle’s engine, so that drivers cannot add, remove or modify data while driving. 

The mandate also provides enforcement agencies with access to records in order to better monitor compliance with federal guidelines. This is intended to improve safety and reduce accidents due to driver fatigue. 

Additionally, ELDs provide benefits to fleets including increased efficiency and improved safety record-keeping. It is important to note that all ELDs must be registered with the FMCSA, and must meet certain technical specifications.

Q: What fleets are affected by the ELD mandate?

A: The federal ELD mandate applies to most commercial vehicles operating in interstate commerce, meaning those crossing state lines and weighing more than 10,000 lbs. This includes both private fleets and for-hire carriers. 

Vehicles operated by drivers who are exempt from the hours-of-service requirements or those in certain agricultural operations may be exempt. Additionally, many states have their own versions of the ELD mandate which apply to intrastate commerce as well.

Q: Are there any penalties for not complying with the ELD mandate?

A: Yes, it is important to note that failing to comply with the ELD mandate can result in significant fines and other penalties. Drivers may be issued out-of-service orders, or fleets may have their operating authority revoked. 

In addition, carriers who violate the mandate may face civil penalties up to $10,000. It is important to remain in compliance with the ELD mandate in order to avoid these consequences.

Q: What should fleets do if they need help transitioning to ELDs?

A: Fortunately, there are many resources available to fleets who need help transitioning to ELDs and complying with the mandate. Fleet management software companies like ZenduiT offer comprehensive solutions that are tailored to meet the needs of different fleets. 

Additionally, fleets can find helpful resources on the FMCSA website or contact their local state enforcement agency for assistance.

Q: What is the best way to ensure compliance with the ELD mandate?

A: The best way for fleets to ensure that they are in full compliance is to work closely with an experienced fleet management software provider. Fleet managers should also review their policies and procedures to make sure that they meet all of the requirements outlined by the FMCSA. 

Lastly, fleets should take steps to ensure that drivers are properly trained and understand the regulations surrounding the use of ELDs. Following these guidelines will help keep fleets compliant and maximize their operational efficiency.

For additional information on the ELD mandate, read our Beginner’s Guide to Electronic Logging Devices (ELDs).

Conclusion

While the ELD Mandate has caused some controversy since it was first put into effect, it’s important to know whether or not your vehicle needs an ELD device. 

If you’re still uncertain about whether or not your vehicle needs an ELD or have questions about the mandate in general, don’t hesitate to reach out to us. Our team would be more than happy to answer any questions you may have and help get you set up with a compliant solution.

Call us to schedule a demonstration with us today!

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A Beginner’s Guide To Electronic Logging Devices And Current ELD Mandates

Back before the days of automation, truck drivers had to manually log their trips. Even after countless hours on the road, drivers were still responsible for tracking their movements, often spending additional hours accounting for every stop and start. Fortunately, the advent of Electronic Logging Devices (ELDs) removed that labor-intensive step by digitally automating the logging process.

Over the past four years, governments in the U.S. and Canada enacted ELD mandates for most commercial vehicles. Transport Canada has been working diligently to align with the ELD Mandate passed in the United States, which states that providers must obtain certification from a third-party to ensure their solutions meet the complex technical standards set forth by Transport Canada.

Fortunately, the jump to electronic logging has made issues of compliance far easier. GoFleet’s electronic logs capture all necessary logging information automatically, allowing drivers to record on-duty hours with great detail and freeing them up to focus on the road..

In this post, we’ll cover some of the many advantages of using ELDs; we’ll simplify how they work, what they record, and identify the key dates to comply with the current ELD mandates.

 

What Is an ELD?

 

Electronic logging devices often plug into a vehicle’s onboard diagnostics (OBD) port. The ELD vehicle tracker then connects directly to the truck’s engine, sending data safely through mobile apps and GoFleet’s software and fleet management platform.

These telematics devices can send granular engine data — when it was turned on or off, how much fuel was used, how far the vehicle travels — along with GPS global satellite system location data. The telematics are collected and then sent securely to a server, for easy ELD mobile app viewing.

Drivers can likewise access their electronic logging information on their smartphones or tablets using our ELD mobile app. RODS and HOS records can be displayed for vehicle inspectors. This technology streamlines the capture and retrieval of massive amounts of records and receipts.

 

Types of Logging Data Captured

ELDs help fleet compliance managers monitor and analyze safety protocols. GoFleet’s data captures translate into real-time ELD reports showing location information, maps and a wide range of notifications. Data logging captures include:

  • Automatic recording of on-duty driving time, driving behaviour and driver authentication
  • ELDs communicate directly with the engine control module for internal synchronization
  • On-board gyroscope and accelerometer detect movement, providing data around safety-related events such as harsh braking or collisions
  • Automatically records locations, date and time stamps, engine hours, ignition status, vehicle miles driven, motor carrier type and more
  • Provides driver recertification records at the end of every 24-hr period
  • ELDs offer tamper prevention, sending out real-time vehicle location information
  • ELDs also transmit data—constantly to fleet command managers, and locally, on an individual basis, to DOT and other commercial vehicle inspection sites
  • Displays reports on-demand (on screen or print-outs) for safety officials

 

The Advantages of ELDs

 

Smart technology has revolutionized most industries, and its effects on commercial vehicles is no exception. ELDs offer enormous advantages for drivers and their parent companies. Among the most frequently cited:

 

1. Road Safety

 

Most ELDs have a gyroscope and accelerometer, which detect trigger events such as harsh braking, harsh turning and collisions. The resulting data can be used to coach drivers on safe driving, alert to driver drowsiness and even provide collision reconstruction data, which can be used to exonerate drivers from false claims. Electronic logs for truckers have become so effective that governments are mandating their use to improve driver safety, increase vehicle efficiency and save lives.

 

2. Streamlining Record Keeping

 

Record keeping and reporting is an important — if not tedious — part of any fleet’s operations. ELDs help commercial fleets simplify the process, automating the collection of Records of Duty Status (RODS), tabulating drivers’ Hours of Service (HOS) for compliance, and enabling robust reporting while simplifying administrative tasks.

Automated tracking minimizes the risk of records errors, which ultimately makes the process of enforcement checks faster. Using GoFleet’s integrated software platform, ELDs can also provide dashboard reports and internal checks on each vehicle’s integrity, with alerts for scheduled servicing dates to avoid problems before they start.

 

3. Asset Security

 

The security and loss prevention provided by ELD solutions includes real-time GPS satellite data, encrypted from end to end. Vehicles can be located easily in the event of theft, and in many cases theft can be prevented altogether.

The geofencing feature on ELDs creates a virtual boundary around a given location, and sends an alert any time a vehicle breaches the boundary, minimizing loss and reducing the cost of replacing assets. Real-time data captures everything from micro data on drive-chain stability to macro data on driver behavior and HOS, granting your fleet command-centre visibility.

 

4. Cost Benefits & ROI

 

By streamlining and upgrading the record-keeping process, your fleet can travel faster and smarter. Moreover, fleet managers can more easily identify areas for efficiency and cost savings. This is especially true with route mapping and capturing idling time, both of which dramatically reduce fuel costs.

In the event of a collision, forensic accident reconstruction and recording of harsh driving events help minimize liability and reduce insurance premiums while also serving as an opportunity to effectively coach your drivers on better driving habits.

 

5. HOS Compliance

 

The Hours of Service (HOS) Rules ensure that commercial drivers operate their vehicles within the daily limit and log working hours accurately using an elog app or electronic logbook. Because ELDs connect directly to the vehicle, they make it easier and faster to track, manage, share and improve the accuracy of a driver’s hours of service record. 

The devices ensure drivers comply with the Canadian Government’s Commercial Vehicle Drivers HOS Regulations by tracking when drivers have been at the wheel and for how long.

In this light, ELDs will make it easier for drivers and motor carriers to comply with the regulations by staying within legally allowed driving hours.

 

Recent ELD Mandates: Who Needs ELDs?

 

Deadlines loom for recent inter-country ELD mandates, making it likely that all North American commercial vehicles will have to adapt to this technology soon. At present, only commercial vehicles older than model year 2000 are still exempt. Some highlights on the mandates:

Canada’s ELD Mandates & Key Dates

 

Canada recently published its Regulations on Commercial Vehicles, which require Electronic Logging Devices for all commercial fleets by June 12, 2022.

Canada’s move to ELD reporting began in 2017. By June 13, 2019, Transport Canada had begun mandating ELDs for bus operators and commercial trucks. By June of 2022, Canada is expecting all fleets to have switched from daily paper logs to ELDs. Other regulatory mandates include:

  • Canadian ELDs must meet Electronic Logging Devices standards and minimum requirements.
  • Canadian ELDs must be third-party certified, not self-certified by the manufacturer, as in the U.S.
  • Canadian drivers will not transfer logs electronically to a federal system, like eRODS in the U.S. Instead, drivers will be required to email transfer files to officers.
  • There will no longer be a two-year phase-out period for ERDs; fleets must achieve ELD compliance by the 2022 date.

 

Canadian ELD Exemptions

 

Canada offers four main exemptions in their recently updated ELD regulations. Commercial vehicles may be exempt from the eLogs mandate if they meet the following criteria:

  • Operate the vehicle under a specifically issued permit
  • Are subject to rental agreements with terms under 30 days
  • Have a prior statutory exemption
  • Operate a vehicle that was manufactured before model year 2000

Canadian drivers of commercial motor vehicles manufactured before 2000 can continue to keep paper logs to track driving time and on-duty hours records.

 

U.S.A.’s ELD Mandates & Exemptions

 

ELDs are currently required of all fleet industries in the U.S. whenever any one driver logs in eight days worth of duty status logs or more (out of 30 days). The U.S. ELD mandates went into effect back in December 2017, with an expectation of full compliance by December 2019. The FMCSA will allow exemptions for drivers who:

  • Are not required to keep Record of Duty Status (RODS)
  • Drivers who use RODS for no more than eight days during any 30-day period
  • Tow-away drivers, if the vehicle driven was part of a shipment
  • Drivers of commercial vehicles older than model year 2000

The FMCSA also recommends consulting their site to verify how your fleet is affected by the ELD trucking rules changes.

 

Meeting ELD Requirements 

 

There are many similarities between the American and Canadian ELD mandates. Both require engine synchronization, GPS tracking, automatically capturing on-duty and off drive-time, and the use of an on-screen display to show records to roadside inspectors. 

There are also some major differences between the two nations; Canadian mandates will require the ELD system to actively alert drivers when they are running close to their hours of service limits. The hours of service rules in Canada are also quite different from the U.S.

As a fleet manager, it’s important to stay detail-oriented. For trucks travelling within Canada, fleet managers should choose an ELD vendor and carrier that supports Canadian hours of service rules, and are committed to achieving third-party certification.

 

GoFleet to Get the Details

 

As everyone works towards full compliance, we at GoFleet are tracking recent electronic logbook changes to stay apprised of any developments or changes. Our ELD solutions provide industry-leading insights, while our electronic logs for truckers help simplify record keeping, providing commercial fleets peace of mind.

As technology and connectivity become ever more integrated, it’s important to choose your solutions wisely. Ask us about our Geotab Drive ELD, an FMCSA compliant app for mobile devices that provides Driver Vehicle Inspection Reporting (DVIR) and Hours of Service compliance solutions, in real-time.

All of our integrated ELD solutions save you time and money. Contact us to schedule a free consultation or trial demonstration to see how your fleet will be affected. Our experts can help you strategize and streamline. 

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The Top Canadian ELD Myths That Could Be Holding Your Fleet Back

If you’ve been keeping tabs on the Canadian Electronic Logging Device (ELD) Mandate, you know that the deadline for compliance was set for June 12, 2021. While this date has recently been noted as a soft compliance date to focus on education and awareness with penalties not beginning until June 12, 2022, being compliant ASAP will only ensure you will be ready for anything. Regardless of whether you have a fleet of hundreds or only a few vehicles, this mandate will apply to you. Here’s what you need to know to stay ahead of the deadline and bring your fleet up to speed.

Upcoming ELD Mandate Deadline

Transport Canada has been working diligently over the past four years to align with the ELD Mandate passed in the United States. The ELD Mandate states that providers must obtain certification from a third-party to ensure their solutions meet the necessarily-complex technical standards set forth by Transport Canada.

Among other things, the goals of the Canadian ELD Mandate include:

  • Standardizing processes to prevent logbook tampering, driver harassment and general errors.
  • Changing how drive time is recorded and reported
  • Replacing paper logs with ELDs that integrate directly into commercial vehicle engines
  • Compliance with Canadian Hours of Service (HOS) Rules

Canadian HOS Rules

The Hours of Service (HOS) Rules ensure that commercial drivers operate their vehicles within the daily limit and log working hours accurately using an elog app, or electronic logbook. The devices ensure drivers comply with the Canadian Government’s Commercial Vehicle Drivers HOS Regulations by tracking when drivers have been at the wheel and for how long.

Why Was the ELD Mandate Introduced?

The Canadian ELD mandate was developed to support the economy by improving road safety and decreasing driver fatigue. Similar to the U.S. ELD Mandate, devices must synchronize with engines, capture driving times automatically, offer GPS tracking and digital log verification. Unlike the American iteration, Transport Canada requires third-party verification of ELDs (in the U.S., ELD manufacturers can self verify.)

ELDs have long been linked with safer driving habits, including prevention of driver fatigue. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) identifies driver fatigue as a main factor linked to vehicle crashes, accounting for 15-20% of transportation accidents.

Commercial vehicle drivers tend to be more at risk for fatigue on the road due to long work days, irregular schedules and monotonous driving. According to the Canadian Trucking Alliance, a universal ELD mandate would curb the behaviours associated with higher crash rates almost immediately. The goal is to ensure that all carriers follow the HOS rules, which will make compliance easier to track and ultimately level the playing field within the industry.

Top ELD Myths Debunked

With any new mandate, as with any new technology, you’re bound to find misconceptions about the latest requirements and who they apply to. Below, we’ve answered some of the most common myths surrounding Canadian ELDs.

ELDs Will Put Owners Out of Business

One of the remarks most frequently shared with the FMCSA was the fear that ELDs would push operators out of business. Fears arose as a result of the anticipation that ELDs would be cost-prohibitive, and the perception that HOS rules would result in fewer driving hours, resulting in lower productivity.

Actually, commercial fleets that adopt ELDs statistically never return to paper logs. ELDs can record status changes down to the minute, whereas paper logbooks round up to the nearest 15 minutes. Ultimately, ELDs can lead to more posted mileage.

ELDs are Cost-Prohibitive

The underlying principle behind the ELD Mandate is that a driver’s time is a limited yet precious resource. When drivers are universally limited to the same time restrictions, fleets can focus on making the most of their time, rather than sitting idle.

While there is definitely an upstart cost, ELDs are not necessarily cost-prohibitive. Current ELD pricing is considerably lower due to compatibility with the smart devices already in use by most fleets. These systems are an investment in your company’s future; they’ll grow with your business and stay relevant as you continue to expand.

When compared to other operational costs such as liability, equipment, fuel and permits, investing in ELDs can offer significant cost savings, especially with regards to fuel economy. ELDs can actually identify driving behaviours that can cut into profits, such as idling, hard braking and speeding. According to the FMCSA, the average annual cost of an ELD will be estimated at $495 per truck, with a total range of $165 to $832 per truck with the ELD rule. Compare this to 20 years ago, when an individual camera cost upwards of $2500.

ELDs Require a Driver’s Attention, Distracting Them From the Road

There have been claims that ELDs require drivers to interact with them while driving.

In fact, a driver does need to log into his device and a status must be selected. But once the driver is on the road, an ELD will automatically update the driver’s status between ‘Driving’ and ‘Not Driving’. In addition, a countdown timer with audible alerts ensures that drivers have enough time to park safely before reaching the HOS limit.

ELDs Automatically Report HOS Violations

Nothing is transmitted to law enforcement unless there’s cause, such as a traffic violation, roadside inspection or a compliance audit. Like a paper logbook, ELD won’t automatically transmit data, nor does it automatically trigger violations. ELDs will actually make roadside inspection go faster, because officials can verify HOS compliance at a glance.

ELDs are Surveillance Machines

Fleet managers don’t have hours to sit around playing Big Brother with their drivers. The point of acquiring an ELD system is to prevent the influx of data. ELDs are programmed to notify managers about specific triggers and events, and the only people who use those data sets are the ones authorized to do so. An audit of your digital logs work in much the same way as they would with traditional paper logs; the only difference is the electronic logs are more accurate and save more time.

ELDs Can Shut Down Your Truck

Only the driver determines when and where he will stop. ELDs record engine data, they don’t drive your vehicle.

ELDs Don’t Improve Truck and Driver Safety

A report from the Center for Truck and Bus Safety of Virginia Tech Transportation Institute found that commercial drivers using e-Logs had a 11.7% reduction in total crash rates and a 5.1% reduction in preventable crash rates compared to trucks not equipped with electronic logs.

ELDs Only Apply to Big Fleets

Smaller fleets (20 trucks or fewer) report the same improvements in their operations as larger fleets do with the implementation of ELDs. The same goes for reduced operating costs. Essentially, the ELD Mandate applies to all fleet sizes, regardless of how many trucks you have. If you file a Record of Duty Status, you must have an ELD.

I Don’t Need an ELD, I Can Use My Smart Device

A tablet or smartphone or tablet alone will not meet the ELD requirements. In order to be compliant, a device must also integrate with the truck’s engine. Only those devices certified and listed with the FMCSA will be considered compliant.

Conclusion

The Canadian regulation requirement of third-party certification is the biggest differentiating factor between Canada and the U.S.; devices in Canada must undergo a vetting process to make sure they have the correct technical requirements.

For that reason, fewer ELDs are expected to be approved for use in Canada. The Canadian Government is committed to a safe and reliable transportation system, and fleet managers would do well to follow suit. Don’t wait until June 12 — GoFleet has a host of ELD options and fully-integrated digital solutions for your business, regardless of size. When it comes to compliance, there are no shortcuts.

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What You Need to Know Before Purchasing an Electronic Logging Device

Fleet management may look like an easy process at first glance. However, individuals who are working in this industry can testify that it is much more complex than it may seem. Fleet management systems are composed of information about all the aspects of an entire fleet within one specialized database system. The same goes for documents for meeting with fleet compliance. Fortunately, electronic logging solutions can ease this complexity. 

Moreover, purchasing an Electronic Logging Device or ELD solution is an imperative decision. Not only that it will help your fleet be FMCSA compliant but it also offers different features to make your operations easier. On top of that, it will allow business to maximize profits. 

However, there are so many ELD providers that you can find right now, making it difficult to choose the right one. That said, it is important for you to first understand the aspects that an excellent ELD provider must possess.

 

The Things You Need to Know Before Purchasing an ELD Solution

An Electronic Logging Device is a digital solution that allows commercial motor carriers and professional truck drivers to track the HOS or Hours of Service compliance. It is attached into the onboard diagnostics (OBD) port of the vehicle. This way, the device can record the vehicle’s data. That includes the speed, location, number of miles driven, and more. 

There are basically two ELD types. The first one is a fixed unit or one that stays in the fleet. Meanwhile, the second one is called BYODs – short for Bring Your Own device. 

The latter can be a simple app installed in the driver’s phone. Moreover, a fixed ELD should be installed by a professional as it is hard wired. 

Moreover, the main benefit of a fixed ELD is that the user is less likely to lose or damage it. Additionally, hard wired systems provides better control over the users’ data. They are also more straightforward in terms of maintenance since they are homogenous. 

On the other hand, a BYOD ELD is a system that lets user bring their own device and install the ELD system app there. It works by connected the device, a smartphone, for instance, to the Electronic Control Module or ECM via a dongle through the cab’s onboard diagnostic port. The dongle will be responsible for connecting and transmitting data to the smartphone using Bluetooth. There are also BYOD ELDs that rely on the phone’s data plan in order to work. 

Furthermore, regardless of the ELD type you will choose, one thing that you need to ensure is its certification on the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration or FMCSA’s list of ELDs. 

 

The ELD Mandate

ELDs work by recording data about a vehicle’s operation and its driver’s activity. The recorded information about the driver is mostly about the hours of service. HOS consist of a permanent record of driving hours, rest time, and on-duty hours within the entire trip. Notably, on-duty hours is the time the driver is working but not driving.

Recording this data is important because commercial drivers have a maximum time restriction in the number of hours that they can drive between rest periods. 

In 1937, the federal law mandated commercial drivers to keep their service logbooks. Back then, they mainly used logbooks and information were manually written. This method was then replaced by the ELD mandate. This regulation specifies that commercial drivers need to use electronic logging devices. 

Moreover, the usage of ELDs for trucks in Canada is set to become a requirement for professional drivers by the 12th of June 2021. Doing this will improve the driver’s road safety as well as save the trucking companies’ time and resources. 

The main reason why ELDs are required to be fitted to all commercial trucks in Canada is to ensure that both the drivers and the transportation companies are abiding by the Federal laws. This new law is an assurance that logging devices are meeting the uniform technical standards for the information below:

  • Data sharing to make sure that all ELD systems are using standardized format
  • Logbook edits that will allow drivers to certify the Record of Duty Status or RODS and make necessary edits.
  • Collection of data as a way to provide information such as engine data, motion status, and location.
  • Drive duty status to permit special driving conditions.
  • Drive alerts that will notify drivers when it is time to pull out so they can avoid violating the HOS rules.

That being said, companies that are planning to purchase ELDs should make sure that their chosen system is complying with the FMCSA. This way, they can ease themselves by knowing that they are not violating the ELD law. 

 

Who Will be Affected By The Canadian ELD Mandate?

The Canadian ELD Mandate will affect trucks, tractors, trailers or any combination of the three that has a registered gross vehicle weight in excess of 4,500 kg or a bus that is designed and constructed to have a designated seating capacity of more than 10 persons, including the driver. 

This mandate will impact fleets in all industries. For a complete list of who is required to comply, fleets are recommended to review Transport Canada or the Ministry of Transportation requirements available online. 

 

Canada’s ELD Mandate is Near – What are the Next Steps?

Since Canada’s ELD Mandate is quickly approaching, there are 3 important steps to take before June 12th.

1. How will your fleet be impacted?

You must review the regulations outlined in the Canadian ELD Mandate to not only confirm whether your operations will be impacted, but how your operations will need to prepare. This can be done by reviewing information released by Transport Canada or the Ministry of Transportation about the requirements

 

2. Ensure that you are subjected to the Mandate by verifying that the right hardware and software solutions are installed.

While much of the hardware and software components required to remain compliant to the upcoming mandate is likely already in place for most fleets, teams should confirm and verify this. Installations or testing can often fall through the cracks and leave teams at risk. If solutions are already in place, each driver should confirm that their device is properly configured and is collecting the right data related to their assigned routes.

 

3. Confirm that your team is properly trained on the regulation changes. 

Checking the hardware and software setup of electronic logging devices also requires team members to be trained on the materials. Whether this is how to display hours-of-service while on the road understanding new rules or time off requirements – proper research on regulation changes should never be overlooked. Fleets are recommended to review Transport Canada or the Ministry of Transportation requirements available online. 

If your fleet is impacted by the Canadian ELD Mandate and you require electronic logging devices or solutions to help remain compliant, contact us today. Our team is trained to help carriers in all industries abide to regulations.

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The Mandate Is Coming: The Additional Details You Need To Know About ELDs

As many fleets in the long-haul transportation sector know, Transport Canada’s ELD Mandate is quickly approaching and will require countless vehicle-based businesses to transition to electronic logging devices (ELDs). As there will be penalties for fleets who do not use these devices, fleets are forced to update their paper logbooks. While there is basic training related to how to properly use ELDs, fleet managers must also become familiar with additional ELD information to properly abide to hours-of-service (HOS) regulations. 

Widely Known Benefits Of ELDs 

When electronic logging devices are purchased and implemented, many fleets are made aware of basic benefits. Before the mandate, it is important to review the benefits and ensure you are aware of how to see the results. Typically, fleets can see: 

  • Accurate logging for HOS as ELDs read the odometer and monitor the engine to collect various data to make sure drivers and managers abide by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) regulations 
  • Prevention of driver fatigue since drivers won’t be overworking – accurate logs will ensure  drivers are not over-driving
  • Increased public safety as a result of decreased driver fatigue and overworking 
  • Improved data collection when investigating driving incidents as officials can use information gathered from the ELDs to rule out theories to why a driving event occurred
  • Reduced tampering of company tools or devices as the ELDs approved by the FMCSA are tamper proof and automatically display HOS

 

Additional Information About ELDs That Fleets Can’t Go Without 

While the above information is great, the Transportation Compliance Specialists at GoFleet have concluded that there is more to know. Without knowing such information, fleets may run into issues or continue to miss out on fully leveraging their devices. As a result, we believe the following is critical to know: 

  • Fraudulent changes to logs are actively stopped as FMCSA regulations limit what edits can be done (even with fleet manager access) – in addition, logs cannot be switched between drivers.
  • Crossing the border will require drivers to adjust their device to display the country they are in. This will allow the ELD to automatically update to follow the regulatory frameworks of the country that they are in. Drivers are still recommended to review the regulations of the country they are about to enter, before crossing the border, so that they are not caught off guard.
  • Even though the chances that the ELD will fail are low, drivers are allowed to revert back to paper logging if the ELD malfunctions. In case the ELD does fail, they can easily prove to officers that the tablet malfunctioned and the data was unable to transfer. 
  • Tampering with the device is easily detectible as ELDs do not only record HOS but whether the vehicle is in movement or not. 
  • Electronic logging devices must be accredited by a 3rd party certification body who is certified under the FMCSA – self certification is not allowed.

 

Properly Educating Drivers About The Mandate 

It is not enough to only have fleet managers knowledgably about the incoming ELD mandates. Fleet drivers must be properly trained in everything that we have discussed.  

From the standard operating procedures of using the electronic logging device to being aware of how devices are pre-designed to reduce improper utilization, drivers must undergo proper training. It is therefore mission-critical for training courses to be created and assigned in a timely manner for drivers, so that they can be acquainted with the mandates that are being enforced. 

To assist with this, ZenduLearn is the perfect application that can help create, deploy, and track personalized learning and training. 

With the ELD Mandate approaching in a matter of months, Canadian fleets must prepare and train their drivers. To learn more about how your vehicle-based business can further prepare for the incoming mandate, contact us today to speak with one of our Transportation Compliance Specialists. 

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! 

Questions To Ask Before Buying ELD Solutions

As the deadline to be ELD compliant is looming closer (or as already passed), it’s important that every fleet manager researches what electronic logging device will work best for them. As many fleets could still be operating without such devices, it’s only a matter of time before drivers are asked to show hours of service without using paperlogs. Prior to discussing the important questions that fleet managers should ask when buying ELD solutions, it’s important to understand how buying the right (or wrong) device could affect your fleet and why you need to be ELD compliant. 

 

What Is The ELD Mandate?

 

The ELD Mandate is a regulation which focuses on the amount of travelling a commercial motor vehicle operator has and can complete. Specifically, it focuses on limiting the amount of driving to a pre-set and pre-determined ‘safe duration’ to ensure that drivers are not overworking themselves to complete more deliveries or routes. This stems from the concern that more driving incidents, accidents or poor judgement calls typically happen when drivers behind the wheel are tired because they have not had enough rest on the clock or between shifts. In order to complete this, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) and the Canadian Council of Motor Transport Administrators (CCMTA) began to move towards electronic devices (ELDs). ELDs are devices which record the driving time and hours-of-service (HOS) of a driver via telematics and IoT innovation. This is possible as the device typically has a plug-and-play feature which allows it to be installed into nearly any vehicle to immediately start to monitor the engine and whether it is running. However, as every fleet is different, it’s important to perform your own research in regards to your specific fleet size and location with up-to-date information to ensure that you are compliant at all times. 

What Are The Deadlines? 

 

In America, most fleets were required to make the switch in December 2017. However, American transport companies that were utilizing automatic onboard recording devices (AOBRDs) prior to December 2017, were provided with a different compliance date of December 2019. Canada on the other hand, is required to be ELD compliant by June 2021

 

What Benefits Can Fleets Expect To Notice After Becoming Compliant? 

 

Apart from being compliant and limiting the fines or penalties could receive, it’s important to learn about the additional benefits that come from being ELD compliant. In some cases, fleet managers may find that they are not only able to better organize their efforts, but can see financial improvements happen. The following are some benefits that managers can expect to notice once their fleet is ELD compliant: 

 

  • Increased accuracy with administrative tasks as the devices automatically record and log information
  • Improved fuel use as idling can be monitored and addressed
  • Better vehicle diagnostics as engine fault codes can be detected quickly with ease 
  • Improved location tracking of assets and route management as ELDs automatically gather information about where the device is 
  • Improved identification of poor driving behaviours for each driver (that can later be addressed in training modules or employee reviews)
  • Increased safety as there is less of a risk of drivers operating the motor vehicle if they are overworked and tired 
  • Improved Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA) scores as the device can help ensure that you are meeting strict standards 

 

Interested in viewing what electronic logging devices GoFleet can offer you? 

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However, with so many options to look at and so many details to review, we understand that sometimes becoming ELD compliant can be overwhelming. That’s why we compiled a list of questions that should be asked when inquiring about ELD Solutions

 

Read our top 7 questions to keep in mind before buying ELD solutions below! 

 

1. “Will the same device work in any type of vehicle?”

 

When you’re speaking with a solutions provider or buying ELD solutions, it’s important that you discuss in-depth your current needs and how your fleet could change (or how you would like it to change) in the future. Specifically, mentioning information like what class of vehicles are or will be used (ie. makes, models and fuel type), the size of your fleet, and your current struggles of fleet management in relation to driver and workload monitoring. 

 

All of this information can better help your ELD provider supply devices that are compatible now and in the future. 

 

2. “What is the installation procedure for ELD solutions and how long does it take?”

 

To fully understand the installation process, it’s important that you inquire not only about how easy the ELD solutions will be to install, but what the failure rates are in addition to the simplicity of troubleshooting or replacing. For example, if a device has a high failure rate or is difficult to replace due to rarity, it may not be the right fit for a small-sized fleet that needs to be agile and functional at all times.

 

3. “How much does the device cost and what are the ongoing fees?”

 

Often, the go-ahead to deploy new technology typically relies on the financial burden that the company will take on. So always inquire twice about this. Asking not only at the beginning of your research, but finalizing the cost and fees at the end (right before you purchase the devices). This will ensure that there are no surprises. 

 

Somethings to remember to consider while asking about the cost are:

  • How expensive the hardware itself is
  • Whether you will require professional installation or if it is a plug-and-play device
  • What the monthly recurring charge (MRC) is for each vehicle 
  • What is the training or onboarding process typically like – taking into consideration downtime to install devices or train personnel 

 

4. “Is the ELD device easy to use?”

 

GO9 GPS Tracking DeviceIf a device is too complex or difficult to understand, you may find that it’s not the right fit for your team. As you need to ensure that your entire team, especially your drivers, will understand how to use it – you need to be confident in the capabilities of the device. Ensuring the device is user-friendly, easy to setup and requires minimum upkeep are only a few things to keep in mind. 

 

Additionally, prior to buying ELD solutions, you should consider how the device will be supported. For example, asking whether it is supported with iOS and Android devices, or whether you will need to purchase specific devices to use it. For many fleet managers, cross-compatibility with adaptable ELD solutions are the most attractive. 

 

5. “How will you ensure that the solution will remain compliant in the future?”

 

Since a major factor of the adoption of electronic logging devices are compliance requirements, it’s important that the device you adopt will always remain compliant. Specifically inquiring whether the solution will adapt to new regulations and whether you are satisfied with the vendor’s commitment to updating their device. 

 

6. “What types of plans do you offer? How easy is it to switch?”

 

Depending on the current needs of your fleet, certain plans will be better for you. With this being said typically, there is a Base Plan that has basic GPS tracking features, a Regulatory Plan with improved data tracking, a Pro Plan that tracks engine data, and a ProPlus Plan that does all of this with 24/7 support! While it is fairly easy to upgrade in most cases, it’s important to not only clarify this but understand all features available. 

 

Some key features to keep in mind are: 

  • Support for ruleset and exemptions 
  • The ability to share data with 3rd party users or backend customers
  • Open platform expandability and data ownership

 

7. “How long has your company been in business? Have you offered an AOBRD product before?”

 

Working with a business that is well known and experienced in the industry is critical. While some newer organizations may have an attractive price, you may find that in the future they are unable to provide the right offerings and support because of their young age. With this being said, always research and look for reviews with who you are working with so you don’t unknowingly work with a less than a reputable provider. You can also inquire about their core business offerings, how long they’ve been supporting your industry, how long they have been offering ELDs, how large their customer base is and the names of businesses they work with who are similar to yours. 

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Even though we only listed the seven important questions, there could be additional concerns that you need to address before buying ELD solutions. With that being said, we invite you to give us a call to talk about your fleet and your unique ELD needs. We’re confident that with our extensive knowledge of electronic logging devices, we have the experience necessary to help!

Remember while many Canadian fleets still have some time to migrate to using electronic logging devices, many American fleets should already be compliant! 

 

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Driver Turnover: How Telematics Can Reduce It

Just like in any industry, even some of the largest transportation companies encounter turnover. However, in recent years the discussion of employee turnover and the need to counter it has grown due to increasing rates. In 2019, it was reported that in the third quarter, large U.S. fleets saw driver turnover increase by 9% to reach 96%. With such high rates, it shows that fleets must work even harder to encourage employee growth and encourage drivers to stay. Recently, fleets of various sizes are starting to look at how telematics and new technology can help combat high driver turnover. 

Telematics Solutions To Reduce High Driver Turnover  

With job expectations changing and technology advancing, many have found that telematics could be a solution to combating high driver turnover. 

Focusing On Optimization And Task Streamlining 

When looking at the transportation industry and the need to reduce employee turnover, it’s important to use new technology to make work more efficient or enjoyable for drivers. One way this is being approached is by employers who are utilizing technology to their advantage. Specifically by implementing and introducing tools to increase productivity and simplify tasks. 

For example, using management and automation solutions to reduce much of the repetitive or administrative tasks that drivers must complete. This can be seen through electronic logging devices (ELDs) like the Geotab Drive ELD that automatically records and produces logs about driving history or even solutions like ZenduWork that quickly optimizes dispatching routes and allows for work orders to be completed electronically. When tasks are simple to complete, many drivers could begin to feel efficient and happy with fewer challenges to overcome. 

Focusing On Training And Support 

Another approach to combating driver turnover is maintaining a workplace that focuses on boosting employee skills. Specifically by ensuring that drivers will always be provided with new training opportunities and coaching support to ensure they’re driving safely. When this option is available many drivers can feel a sense of connection and positive morale as they see their employer wanting to help them succeed! Thus, prompting a satisfied (and more skilled) workforce! This is seen by implementing software solutions such as ZenScore, an interactive training dashboard that encourages safe and efficient driving habits throughout fleets. The solution allows fleet managers to not only create and set up training modules to boost skill and learning but can act as a tool for measuring KPIs and productivity automatically and electronically. 

Focusing On Rewards And Culture 

The final approach that many fleets are taking to attempt to reduce driver turnover is offering rewards and maintaining a positive workplace culture. As many drivers can be on the road alone for hours or even days, it’s important to keep their work morale high! Forgoing this may result in drivers feeling disconnected, unmotivated or even unwilling to stay with the company. To help combat each of these issues, some fleet managers are doing the following:

  • Measuring KPIs and coordinating friendly competitions that offer rewards to those who meet and excel past set criteria. For example, holding weekly or monthly contests that reward the driver who speeds the least. 
  • Offering additional paid time-off, increased pay wages or gift card bonuses for drivers who are going above and beyond driving expectations. For example, rewarding the safest driver each quarter with some sort of incentive. 
  • Encouraging social connection and positive culture with drivers on the road by organizing company events so they feel part of a team. 

For many fleet managers, they could be feeling pressure to change their workplace in order to try to combat any high driver turnover that they may be facing. In times like this, it’s critical to implement the right processes and procedures to keep drivers happy, productive and satisfied with their current position. As you have read, in some circumstances technological solutions can help with this. If you’re interested in learning how certain telematics solutions such as electronic logging devices, ZenScore, or ZenduWork may be able to positively influence your fleet, contact us today!