Trucking's ELD-Day

12/18/2018

ELD Takes Effect Today: Things You Might Want to Know
Carriers Should Make Extra Effort to Communicate With Customers About HOS Rules 

Beginning Today - Monday, December 18, 2017 - carriers are to be in compliance with the ELD regulations. 

All vehicles and drivers that were previously required to fill out paper log books will be required to have either a grandfathered AOBRD (Automated On-Board Recording Device per 395.15 which expires 12-16-19) or an ELD (Electronic Logging Devices).  No hours of service rules were changed because of the ELD rule.  

FMCSA and its enforcement partners are fully prepared for the Dec. 18, 2017 implementation, and are committed to implement the ELD rule in a manner that improves safety without impeding commerce. FMCSA has trained its Federal Staff and State law enforcement partners, and FMCSA has fully tested the electronic data transfer process. 

FMCSA has issued the following limited exemptions/waivers from the ELD requirements.  Several other waivers and exemptions are currently under consideration. 

  • A limited exemption to United Parcel Service from some of the technical requirements for which their portable ELD has an alternate means of compliance, allowing their business operations to remain efficient.
  • A waiver was issued allowing drivers of rental trucks to operate without an ELD for up to 30 days for the next 3 months.  After that, an exemption has been issued to driver to operate without an ELD for 8 days or less. 
  • A limited 90-Day waiver from the ELD requirement for those transporting Agricultural Commodities, as defined in the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations, which includes livestock.

To ease the transition to ELDs, FMCSA’s partners at the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance have previously announced a delay in placing non-ELD compliant vehicles out-of-service until April 1, 2018, which will allow continued time for carriers and law enforcement to adjust to the new technology.  FMCSA has also announced that violations cited during the time period of December 18, 2017 through April 1, 2018 will not count against a carrier’s Safety Measurement System scores. This violation is on paper only and will show up on the inspection report as a “violation noted on an inspection”. The specific violation is on 395.22 – failure to have an ELD. Once that is documented, the paper logs will be reviewed for accuracy. FMCSA is using this tactic to track compliance. 

It should be noted that while the SCSTP currently has no plan to cite (ticket) drivers/companies prior to April 1, 2018, every state is different. According to FMCSA and CVSA, fine structures with associated violations are directed at the state level for the vast majority. There has been no compilation of state plans to date, but we will keep you posted as soon as we hear anything. 

We urge you to make sure that your drivers are up to speed on their current systems, know how to communicate their status if they are exempt from using an ELD, or are able to communicate any delays on implementation effectively with roadside officers.

SCTA and local FMCSA are currently looking for guidance on multiple write-ups and equipment delays. If you have other specific questions and can’t find the answer, you can either contact us or send feedback directly to FMCSA via email to ELD@dot.gov.  

If you are waiting on equipment – new or replacement – please make sure that you have documentation in your maintenance files at your principle place of business for future reference. You can have this documentation in your trucks and if stopped/inspected you can provide it to the officers as information; however, this will not preclude a notation of violation on your inspection. It will simply allow the officer to make note, if desired. This isn’t a firm “in writing” guidance from FMCSA. It’s solely a suggested best practice to aid in communication. 

After April 1, CSA points and citations (fines) will go into effect, but there is no known amount for CSA points or amount for the citation at this time. 

Links of interest:

 

ELD: FMCSA Looking at Personal Conveyance

FMCSA is looking at altering guidance issued to carriers and drivers involving the use of their truck as a personal vehicle to their home or to restaurants and motels along their route as part of the implementation of the ELD Rule. They will publish a notice in the Federal Register to announce the proposed changes and field comments for 30 days from industry stakeholders.

The key change to the personal conveyance guidance is the removal of the requirement that trucks be unladen to be used for personal conveyance. FMCSA says the change is mostly meant to allow straight truck drivers the opportunity to use their truck, even if it is laden with work- or load-related materials or tools, for personal use.

State and federal law enforcement officials urge drivers to use annotations on duty statuses. As proposed, the guidance would allow drivers to use their truck for personal conveyance when off duty in “time spent traveling from a driver’s en route lodging,” like a motel or truck stop, “to restaurants and entertainment facilities and back to the lodging,” according to the agency’s notice. Also included is “commuting from the last location where on-duty activity occurred to the driver’s permanent residence and back to the last on-duty location,” as well as driving from trailer-drop lots to a driver’s residence and between work sites and residences.

Personal conveyance under the changed guidance would not cover “movement of a [truck] to enhance operational readiness,” such as moving closer to a pick-up or drop-off point, the agency says. Also forbidden from personal conveyance use are (1) driving bobtail or with an empty trailer to a location to pick up another load, (2) driving an unloaded truck to a designated parking area after being unloaded and (3) “repositioning a CMV and or trailer at the direction of the motor carrier.”

SCTA will publish a link to the full notice once published and the corresponding comment portal. FMCSA says it is seeking feedback from industry stakeholders regarding other scenarios in which personal conveyance would be appropriate.

When ELDs are placed into personal conveyance mode, their location functionality changes, tracking the truck only within a 10-mile radius via GPS, rather than the one-mile radius required for on-duty recording.

 

Sanford Co-Sponsors WHEEL Act

Congressman Mark Sanford has co-sponsored a bill, the WHEEL Act, which would ease the burdens for entry-level drivers.  SCTA met with Sanford earlier this year to discuss industry issues, including the need to alleviate the driver shortage. 

The bill aims to ease the regulatory burden on interstate trucking by expanding a pilot program studying the safety implications of allowing 18- to 21-year-olds operate trucks across state lines.  For Congressman Sanford's statements regarding the bill, view his official press release, here.

We appreciate the support of Congressman Sanford on this issue and will be working to get more members of the delegation to sign on.

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