On December 16, Canada came out with a draft of her own version of the ELD mandate, one that is very similar to the U.S. ELD rule that took effect last month.
Canada’s proposed ELD regulation is expected to be finalized within two years — following public comments and review.
According to an official of the Canadian Trucking Alliance (CTA), the Canadian version is “99.8% in line” with America’s ELD rule, where commercial drivers are required to use compliant electronic logging devices. It is also important to remember that Canadian truckers who operate in the U.S. are already required to use compliant electronic logging devices.
With the ELD mandate, Canada aims to curb the problem of driver fatigue and, therefore, improve road safety. Just like it is in the USA, driver fatigue is also a recognized issue in Canada. The proposed draft also highlights this major problem.
“Driver fatigue is recognized in Canada and internationally as a critical risk factor associated with motor vehicle crashes,” the draft mentions. It also adds that “fatigue in commercial drivers is especially important given that crashes involving large trucks and buses can cause more severe injuries and more frequent fatalities than private passenger vehicle crashes.”
Talking about the role of the Canadian ELD mandate, Transport Minister Marc Garneau said, “This will make truck drivers less prone to fatigue. It will make our roads safer.”
The use of electronic logging devices can significantly reduce driver fatigue and improve road safety. According to estimates by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), the ELD mandate in the U.S. would save 26 lives and prevent 562 injuries every year. Canada also expects similar or better results with her own version of the ELD rule.
Meanwhile, CTA’s President Stephen Laskowski welcomed the ELD proposal.
Laskowski, who also heads the Ontario Trucking Association (OTA), said, “ELDs will ensure optimum compliance with the hours of service regulation, reducing commercial vehicle collisions related to fatigue and cognitive driver distraction.”
Laskowski also said that the alliance would work with provinces on a plan to roll out ELDs as soon as possible.
Ontario Minister of Transportation Steven Del Duca, on the other hand, said that the province of Ontario was the first in Canada to endorse the use of ELDs publicly three years ago.
Steven Del Duca said, “I commend Transport Canada for taking this important step toward making these devices mandatory.”
Transport Canada is responsible for transportation policies and programs, as well as promoting safety, security, and environmentally responsible transportation.
The U.S. ELD mandate is already in full effect. Now, Canada has also issued its ELD proposal. The future is here.
Although there is still a two-year period for the ELD draft becomes final, Canadian truckers who operate in the U.S. are already required to use compliant electronic logging devices. Moreover, considering the numerous ELD benefits, it would be a good idea for Canadian carriers to install ELDs as soon as possible and not wait for the mandatory compliance date.