Electronic Logging Devices Update

ELD Update

ELDs have had a significant impact on the trucking industry in both the U.S. and Canada. But there are a few uncertainties and inefficiencies that still need to be addressed.

The mandatory Electronic Logging Device (ELD) mandate which went into effect in the United States December 18th, 2017 has had a relatively high rate of adoption. Roughly two-thirds of fleets in the U.S. are reporting that they use ELD’s to track their hours of service, while the other third is a mix of those not in compliance, are exempt from tracking or those who are still utilizing grandfathered AOBRD’s. Speaking of AOBRD’s, we’d like to point out some key facts regarding AOBRD’s and their viability as ELD alternatives. Here are the key rules regarding AOBRD’s that you need to know.

  • The device must be “grandfathered”, meaning that the motor carrier must have had the AOBRD installed prior to December 18th, 2017. That means if you install an AOBRD device into your trucks today, it would not be a valid alternative and you could be subject to fines if discovered.
  • The device must meet the requirements outlined in 49 CFR 395.15.
  • AOBRD’s regardless of “grandfathered” status or not will be disallowed starting December 16th, 2019. After which carriers and drivers must use ELDs to track their records of service.

With AOBRD’s out of the way, let’s have a look at the status of the Canadian ELD mandate and also the effects the ELD mandate has had in the U.S.

The Canadian ELD Mandate

The proposed Canadian ELD Mandate (which can be viewed here) has stalled its progression due to problems with legislation and complications around enforcement. In the U.S. the federal government (Department of Transportation) is responsible for the mandating interstate carriers, so carriers are largely policed by the federal government. Whereas in Canada, all provinces must handle enforcement individually as Transport Canada does not involve itself in the business of enforcement. As you can imagine this has caused some friction between the federal government and the various provinces when it comes to agreeing on regulations and how they should be enforced. It was previously believed that Canada would be imposing an ELD mandate like the one in the U.S. sometime between late 2018 and 2019. However, as time goes on it seems that the previously accepted forecast is becoming less and less likely. However, due to the economic and geographic link between the two countries many Canadian motor carriers and owner operators have already installed and begun utilizing ELDs in favour of traditional paper logs. But why? The answer can be found in the data that American motor carriers have produced since December of last year.

The Effects of The ELD Mandate

We’ve previously discussed the potential efficiency and safety benefits that the adoption of ELDs compromise. Now, nearly a year after the U.S. ELD mandate was rolled out, we have a more concrete understanding of what ELDs can do for efficiency. According to a new survey, 72% of ELD adopters have noticed a benefit in using the system. Whether it be lowering risk of fines resulting from compliance violations, to efficiencies gained from eliminating manual data processing, and the financial benefits from having safe and healthy drivers. But many ELDs come packaged with telematics (otherwise known as GPS Tracking) that has helped companies cut costs, thus boosting their bottom-line. Unfortunately, there’s a difference between potential savings and actual savings, so how is data from ELD enabled telematics tracking devices being currently used?

According to the survey, half of respondents indicated that the primary benefit of telematics is gaining “peace of mind” knowing where their trucks are and where they’ve been. The second benefit being “more efficient routing and dispatching”. However, the tracking of important data points such as the monitoring of speeding, harsh braking, and maintenance tracking have fallen in prevalence since 2017. That being said, over a third of respondents claim that fuel costs represent the companies second largest expense. However less than 30% report using their ELD + Telematics solution to monitor fuel efficiency. GPS Tracking provides actionable data to fleet managers that can reduce costs. Our blog on idling illustrates how much a company can save a month simply by reducing the amount of time their drivers spend idling. Which is only one part of what GPS Tracking can do, many more behaviors such as speeding and aggressive driving can also be monitored and acted upon, cutting costs through efficiency improvements. This saves money without having to sacrifice capital or man power.


We’re committed to helping motor carriers, drivers, and owner operators be not only 100% compliant but also profitable 

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