The ELD mandate is perhaps the single greatest regulatory compliance issue to impact the way drivers and motor carriers do business in the United States.
Now after nearly two years of confusion and anxiety, the final deadline to be ELD compliant is December 16, 2019. That means drivers and carriers alike must be on notice: Not meeting compliance requirements could result in receiving a failure to keep a record of duty status (RODS) citation.
In our effort to help you make sense of this important regulatory issue, here’s a refresher and a checklist to help you make the right decision when choosing an ELD provider.
THE ELD MANDATE
The ELD mandate applies to most motor carriers and drivers who are required to maintain RODS. The rule also includes commercial buses and trucks, and most drivers from Canada and Mexico who travel within the US must comply with the ELD mandate as well. Throughout 2018, the rush to get ELD compliant was fueled by uncertainty. As a result, business owners, fleet managers, drivers, and even some ELD providers themselves were overwhelmed by the last-minute rush.
Learning from what happened last year can help you avoid the pitfalls of waiting until the deadline this year.
YEAR OF UNCERTAINTY
During the fourth quarter of 2018, businesses with fleet vehicles across the United States were in a panic about the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) new ELD mandate.
For many small- and medium-sized businesses, the situation was hard to grasp. A lot of fleets waited until the last minute to have ELDs installed on their vehicles. This meant drivers were not properly trained or prepared to use the new technology.
Adding to the confusion was that businesses and drivers who were already using automatic on-board recording devices (AOBRDs) could continue using them until December 16, 2019.
Once fleet managers, business owners, and drivers learned they could keep using AOBRDs, a sense of false calm set in. Thousands of businesses breathed a sigh of relief. Their plan was to just avoid the problem of getting ELD compliant and address the issue when it was absolutely necessary. In the meantime, they’d just focus on what they do best—running their business.
December 16, 2019 is almost here. All the late adopters are now desperately looking for an easy fix to get ELD compliant, fast.
TIME TO ACT
As the December 16, 2019 deadline approaches, thousands of fleets are now scrambling to get ELD compliant before it’s too late. The difference between now and 2018 is that delay is no longer an option.
Drivers and business owners who are still using AOBRDs have little time to start the process of choosing a vendor, ordering devices, scheduling installations, setting up training, and getting vehicles on the road. If you’ve been delaying upgrading your AOBRDs to ELDs, the time to act is now.
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Since you could face citations, fines, and lost revenue if out of compliance, you must take action as the ELD deadline approaches.
And because every fleet is different, you need to pick a solution that works best for you.
A great option is NexTraq®—a MICHELIN® group company. It is one of the only ELD providers to offer customers a choice to pick a hardwired or smartphone-based ELD solution. Plus, the company meets the criteria set forth in our checklist.
Whatever you do, make sure you act quickly to upgrade or switch your AOBRDs to ELDs before it’s too late.
For more information:
Find out more about the ELD mandate and solutions for the switch, visit www.nextraq.com/services/eld-compliance.