In December 2015, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) published an electronic logging device (ELD) final rule. The rule is intended to help create a safer work environment for commercial motor vehicle (CMV) drivers and make it easier and faster to accurately track, manage and share records of duty status (RODS) data. An ELD synchronizes with a vehicle engine to automatically record driving time for easier, more accurate hours of service (HOS) recording. The final rule also prohibits certain drivers from operating a CMV without an ELD.
The final rule became effective on Feb. 16, 2016, and will be implemented in three phases.
Full compliance with the rule is expected by Dec. 18, 2017.
Besides requiring certain CMV drivers to install and use ELDs, the final rule also does the following:
The FMCSA has published a list of certified ELD providers on its website. Carriers wishing to voluntarily comply with the final rule should check with the FMCSA for this update.
Carriers should also become familiar with the final rule’s anti-harassment procedures, including the definition of ELD-related harassment, the potential penalties for harassment and the procedures implemented to report harassment.
The final rule requires drivers to install and use an ELD if they are currently required to create and maintain RODS data, also known as driver logs. The final rule allows some limited exceptions to the ELD mandate. These exceptions apply only to the installation and use of ELDs. Drivers who qualify for an exception must continue to create and maintain RODS. Exceptions to the mandate apply to the following:
The final rule requires nonexempt drivers and carriers to install and use ELDs by Dec. 18, 2017. A two-year extension is available to drivers and carriers that are currently using compliance automatic onboard recorders (AOBRDs).
ELD-related harassment is “an action by a motor carrier toward one of its drivers that the motor carrier knew, or should have known, would result in the driver violating HOS regulations, which prohibits an ill or fatigued driver from operating a CMV.”