The FMCSA has granted a partial ELD exemption to truckers who are driving short-term rental trucks for eight or fewer days. The ELD exemption is only valid for five years — until October 2022.
In March 2017, TRALA — a group of leasing and rental companies — requested an ELD exemption for truckers who are driving short-term rental trucks for 30 days or less. In its exemption request, TRALA mentioned that although they fully support the ELD mandate, it would “unfairly and adversely affect short-term rental vehicles.”
After discussing the matter, the FMCSA has decided to grant a limited ELD exemption to TRALA. Instead of granting the exemption for up to 30 days, the FMCSA decided to waive ELD usage for short-term rental trucks for eight or fewer days. Moreover, if a carrier is found to be attempting to renew the rental agreement for the same truck for an additional eight days or replacing the rental truck with another, it would be considered a violation by the agency.
The FMCSA received 429 comments on TRALA’s exemption request, and the agency says that more than 95% supported the exemption. Popular groups such as ATA (American Trucking Associations) were also in favor. On the other hand, OOIDA opposed the request.
Regarding the 8-days limitation, the agency says that the 8-day time-frame “would give most carriers sufficient time to repair or replace their usual vehicles.” It is important to remember that the agency also gives 8 days to replace or repair a malfunctioning ELD. It is believed that the agency settled for eight days because it also matches the grace period given for malfunctioning ELDs.
Besides, the agency believes that granting the exemption for up to 30 days wasn’t practical as 30 days “is unnecessarily long given the importance of ELDs to ensure the accuracy of HOS records.”
Here are a few important things to remember after the ELD mandate becomes mandatory on December 18, 2017:
Truck Renting and Leasing Association (TRALA) is a voluntary, non-profit, independent trade organization that is providing a unified and focused voice for renting and leasing industry in the legislation.
The organization was formed in 1978 with a mission to foster positive legislative and regulatory climate among companies engaged in renting and leasing vehicles. It also helps them all compete in a healthy environment without any distinction in the United States.
The ELD mandate compliance deadline is less than 60 days away from now. If you do not fall under this exemption — or any other ELD exemption — you need to have certified electronic logging devices before December 18, 2017.