5 Things You Need to Know About the ELD
The long-distance trucking industry is about to get a technology update on December 18th, as the log books that have traditionally been used to track drivers hours will be going electronic. After a long wait, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) published the final electronic logging device rule — or ELD mandate. What is it exactly? And, what does it mean for commercial motor carriers and truck drivers? The log books will only be used for emergency backup purposes. This is causing many logistical headaches for a lot of trucking companies as they ensure that their fleets of vehicles are properly upgraded and equipped with the new mandated time log machines. It also creates extra anxiety for many drivers as they learn to use this new technology and ensure that their hours are properly logged.
However, this technology is guaranteed to be coming in the near future so everyone will need to learn how to adapt to this new technology if they continue to track driver’s time accurately.
The following are 5 things that it is essential to know about the upcoming ELD requirements that will go into effect on December 18th:
- The December 17th Deadline is Likely Permanent: It is highly unlikely that the date that the ELD will be required to be in use by will be pushed back any further than December 18th. This is true despite many companies voicing their concern over being ready to fully implement this system with their fleets. Seeing that the rule has survived many legal challenges it is unlikely that anything else is going to stop the ELD from being released. Some people are trying to get Congress to try to overturn the ELD, however, that is unlikely to happen as no action has been taken thus far.
- Drivers Will Have More Control Over Editing: Drivers will be able to edit their logs according to regulations set forward in the ELD. Drivers will have all edits they make to their long “pending” in status until that edit is approved, however, if the edit is “rejected” the ELD will have a reconciliatory procedure in place for drivers to go through so that they are appropriately compensated for their hours worked.
- Many ELD Systems Will Offer Much More Than Just Electronic Logs: Low-cost systems that just track driver’s hours will be available but many will be able to do much more. Some will be able to provide reports on the amount of fuel used and others will offer to dispatch, messaging, and workflow applications. Whatever the fleet needs these electronic trackers to track they can track. You can choose for it to be much or little as you want it to be. Consequently, you can also determine how little or much your company wants to spend equipping their vehicles with this technology.
- Choosing the Right Provider For Your Fleet: It will also be key that you choose the right provider to provide the ELD technology services to your fleet. Ensure that your devices are all compliant with the ELD regulations and requirements. Be sure that the service provider you choose has a solid financial background and will be there to provide service for years into the future.
- Develop Procedures & Policies For Your Fleet: Provide policies and procedures to your managers on how these systems should be used. Train your drivers to use the systems only in accordance with the company policies developed to avoid misuse of these systems and to ensure that the new systems are used only for what they are meant to be used for.
The ELD system is coming December 18th, so use these great tips to ensure that your fleet and your drivers are prepared!