The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMSCA) published the final rule in December 2015, mandating fleets to install ELD in all vehicles that are currently required to keep record of duty status (RODS.) The mandate eliminates the need for paper logbooks to records of hours of service (HOS) compliance. Construction vehicles weighing 10,001 pounds or more are subject to the new ELD regulations. Fleets with an integrated ELD solution will monitor and keep record of electronic logs to ensure hours of service (HOS) compliance and give managers and drivers the ability to provide proof upon DOT inspections.
Construction fleet owners will receive electronic logs in real time to ensure HOS compliance is always up to date. ELD solutions will also help prevent citations that previously resulted from a driver's simple paperwork mistakes. By providing proof that the fleet is HOS compliant, insurance rates and back-office administrative costs will decrease as a result of no longer purchasing and auditing paper logbooks. ELDs are required to record vehicle location, which means that many fleets will be in the market for logging devices with GPS tracking capabilities.
The pending ruling by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration will have an impact on construction fleet owners immediately and will open up opportunities for technology providers. The days in which a truck driver could keep two sets of log books will be gone. This new technology records a driver's record of duty status (RODS) to electronically document their hours of service (HOS). Company CEOs and fleet managers will not have to worry about proving how many hours a driver has completed in a shift or a work week. ELDs have several benefits for companies, including saving time for drivers in documenting their hours, allowing dispatchers to have a real-time overview on driver status and location and improving records by moving away from paper-based logs that can be easily lost or damaged.
It will be interesting to see how apps on smartphones play a part in this workflow evolution. While there are certain requirements developers must meet for apps (such as a hardwired connection to the engine), the efficiencies that could be created in how a driver generates and shares data with the dispatcher in real time seem well worth the challenge.
FMSCA Final Rule
The FMSCA Final Rule was set to establish minimum performance and design standards for hours of service (HOS) electronic logging devices (ELD); requirements for the mandatory use of these devices by drivers currently required to prepare HOS record of duty status (RODS); requirements concerning HOS supporting documents; and measure to address concerns about harassment resulting from the mandatory use of ELDs. The requirements for ELDs will improve compliance with the HOS rules.
Effective Date: February 16, 2016
Compliance Date: December 18, 2017
To review the entire Federal Register document, click here.
Source: 78292 Federal Register Vol. 80, No. 241