Although most fleets have successfully implemented ELDs, some carriers, drivers, and fleet managers are still unsure about some ELD mandate compliance questions.
So we have researched and extracted — from several forums and trucking-related websites— the most frequently asked and common ELD mandate compliance questions and answered them for our readers.
If you have any questions regarding the ELD mandate compliance, make sure you read this post and get the clarity you need ahead of the deadline.
Here are the 11 most frequently asked questions about ELD mandate compliance.
1. What is meant by ELD mandate compliance?
ELD mandate compliance means complying with the rules and regulations of the final ELD rule, published by the FMCSA. The mandate requires most commercial vehicles to install ELDs by December 18, 2017.
2. Do all CMV drivers need to become compliant?
No, the mandate doesn’t apply to everyone. Although the final ELD rule applies to most commercial vehicle drivers, there are four major exemptions, too.
If you belong to any of the following categories, you won’t require ELDs:
Drivers who are exempt from the ELD mandate, however, can install electronic logging devices to be on the safe side. For instance, many short-haul drivers are installing compliant ELD solutions because they might have to maintain RODS for more than 8 days in any of the 30-day periods.
3. What are the penalties for noncompliance?
The FMCSA is still working on the exact details of the penalties for noncompliance.
4. What is the compliance deadline?
The deadline for ELD mandate compliance is December 18, 2017.
However, for vehicles using AOBRDs, the deadline under the ‘grandfather clause’ is December 16, 2019.
5. What is the ‘Grandfather Clause’?
According to the ELD mandate, vehicles with AOBRDs will have two extra years to comply with the ELD mandate deadline.
Unlike other vehicles, they can continue using AOBRDs until December 16, 2019. This is known as the ‘grandfather’ clause.
Further reading: Should you buy ELDs or AOBRDs?
6. Are all ELDs in the market compliant?
No. In fact, that’s one of the biggest problems for carriers and owner-operators — to find a compliant ELD solution.
7. How do I find a compliant ELD in the market then?
The ELD you want to buy must fulfill all the requirements and specifications set by the FMCSA. The FMCSA’s list of certified ELDs is a great place to start your research. If an ELD isn’t listed in there, it’s not going to be compliant after the deadline.
Also, the FMCSA has recently reminded safety inspectors that an unregistered ELD shouldn’t be even considered an ELD. In other words, the FMCSA registration is an essential aspect of compliance.
8. How do I check the compliance of the output file generated by my ELD?
It is also important to note that the output file that your ELD generates must also meet the standards set by the FMCSA.
Thankfully, the agency has recently introduced a free tool to check the validity of your ELD’s output file. It will help fleets understand if their ELD solution is compliant with the FMCSA’s requirements or not.
9. What are the supporting documents a driver must carry to stay compliance?
There are supporting documents that drivers must carry with them during the course of operations. These documents — as stated in the mandate — are:
10. Can I use free e-log mobile apps instead of ELDs?
No, you can’t.
The ELD mandate requires engine-connected hardware devices. E-log mobile apps don’t serve that purpose as they are generally used for displaying duty statuses.
Unless an e-log app is paired with an engine-connected ELD, it won’t make you compliant.
11. If I’m using AOBRDs, do I also need ELDs to stay compliant?
If you are using AOBRDs, you will have two additional years to install ELDs. You will need ELDs after December 16, 2019.
However, after the ELD mandate takes effect, you won’t be able to buy AOBRDs to install into new vehicles.
We hope these ELD mandate compliance questions and their answers would be helpful.