Electronic Logging Devices
Property Casualty

Shifting Gears: Upcoming Regulation Impacts Haulers

Freddie Johnston
Freddie Johnston
Vice President, Property Casualty

If you operate trucks with a gross vehicle weight rating in excess of 10,000 pounds, alone or in combination with a trailer, you’re no doubt aware the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) released a final rule in December 2015 requiring the adoption of Electronic Logging Devices (ELDs). These devices automatically record driving time and allow the driver to manually change their duty status. Although a court challenge has been filed, the expectation is the final rule will stand and go into effect as planned on December 18, 2017. Essentially, this will require drivers who currently complete a paper daily log to begin using an ELD.

As you can imagine, the switch to ELDs is a major shift in regulatory compliance. It gives the FMCSA a way to track hours of service compliance that’s less prone to manipulation. However, the implementation of ELDs requires a significant capital investment and introduces new challenges and obligations to drivers and motor carriers alike.

Additionally, it’s important to note, ELDs won’t eliminate hours of service violations because the device only records activity. Fuel transportation haulers are still required to monitor hours of service compliance and maintain a program to identify and correct deficiencies.

With all that said, though, the FMCSA did exempt some drivers from using ELDs. Those relevant to most fleets include:

  • Haulers who don’t need to use a paper log more than eight times in a rolling 30-day period. This primarily includes those operating under the short haul exception found in §395.1(e) of the FMCSA regulations.
  • Haulers operating trucks manufactured before 2000.

When it comes to regulations, we understand there are a lot of questions. We have a team dedicated to helping clients assess their operations and developing a plan to achieve compliance with the ELD mandate in a manner that optimizes the following operational considerations:

  • Minimizing the required upfront capital expenditures to acquire and install ELD technology
  • Minimizing ongoing operating expense related to ELD technology
  • Minimizing the required changes to existing operating policy and procedures
  • Minimizing the exposure to regulatory intervention 

We’ve also teamed up with National Transportation Consultants (NTCI). These consultants, alongside our team, bring a wealth of experience in transportation and law enforcement. So, if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to reach out. Between Holmes Murphy and NTCI, we can help you improve safety and regulatory compliance without compromising the effectiveness and profitability of your fleet. Simply comment below or reach out to us directly!

Explore more from Holmes Murphy