Fast Facts: Electronic Logging Device (ELD) Rule ELD Rule Implementation Timeline
12/15/2015 - ELD Final Rule Published
12/18/2017 - ELD Final Rule Compliance Date
12/16/2019 - ELD Mandatory Use of ELDs
The ELD rule applies to motor carriers and drivers who are required to keep records of duty service (RODS). An ELD is technology that automatically records a driver’s driving time and other aspects of the hours-of-service (HOS) records. This allows easier, more accurate HOS recordkeeping. An ELD monitors a vehicle’s engine to capture data on whether the engine is running, whether the vehicle is moving, miles driven, and duration of engine operation (engine hours). With an ELD, Law enforcement can review a drivers hours of service by viewing the ELD’s display screen, by a printout from the ELD, and in the near future by retrieving data electronically from the ELD. Manufacturers must self-certify that ELDs meet technical standards in the ELD rule and register with the FMCSA. Motor carriers and drivers must choose only ELDs that are certified and registered on FMCSA’s website, as other devices may not be compliant.
Top Frequently Asked Questions About the ELD Rule
Q: Who must comply with the electronic logging device (ELD) rule?
A: The ELD rule applies to motor carriers and drivers who are currently required to keep records of duty service (RODS) under the hours-of-service (HOS) regulations. Drivers who use the time card exception, and don’t keep paper RODs, will not be required to use ELDs. The following drivers may keep paper RODS: • Drivers who keep RODS no more than 8 days during any 30-day period. • Driveaway-towaway drivers (transporting a vehicle for sale, lease, or repair), provided the vehicle driven is part of the shipment or the vehicle being transported is a motor home or recreational vehicle trailer. • Drivers of vehicles manufactured before model year 2000. However, a carrier can choose to use an ELD, even if it is not required.
Q: How soon can electronic logging devices (ELDs) be installed and used – and when must they be used in commercial motor vehicles (CMVs)?
A: Manufacturers can begin certifying and registering ELDs beginning February 16, 2016. Carriers or drivers can use registered ELDs as soon as they are available. All motor carriers and drivers subject to the ELD rule must use either an ELD or an AOBRD (automatic onboard recording device) by the “compliance date” (December 18, 2017). However, AOBRDs may be used after the compliance date if the devices were put into use before that date. Starting December 16, 2019, all carriers and drivers subject to the ELD rule must use ELDs.
Q: How many supporting documents must be retained by motor carriers, and when must drivers submit them to the motor carrier?
A: Motor carriers must retain up to eight supporting documents for each 24-hour period that a driver is on duty. Drivers must submit RODS and all their supporting documents to the motor carrier no later than 13 days after receiving them.
Q: Does the ELD rule require real-time tracking of commercial motor vehicle (CMVs) with ELDs?
A: No, real-time tracking of CMVs is not required in the ELD rule. Yet, a motor carrier may use technology to track its CMVs in real-time for business purposes. A motor carrier is free to use this data as long as it does not engage in harassment or violate the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSRs). However, in transmitting data to safety officials, ELDs must limit location information to protect driver privacy.
Q: Will the vehicle location information identify street addresses?
A: No, ELDs are not required to record street addresses. For enforcement purposes, they record vehicle location only at a general proximity and in relation to the distance and direction to the nearest city, town, or village. If a carrier uses technology to provide more detailed information, that information will not be transferred to a safety official.
Q: Who can edit an electronic logging device (ELD) record?
A: Both the driver and authorized carrier staff can make limited edits to an ELD record to correct mistakes or add missing information. All edits must include a note (annotation) to explain the reason for the edit. In addition, the driver must confirm (certify) that any carrier edit is accurate, and resubmit the records. If the driver chooses not to re-certify his or her RODS, this is also reflected in the ELD record. The ELD keeps the original, unedited record, along with the edits. Example: a carrier edits a record to switch a period of time from “off-duty” to “on-duty not driving”, with a note that explains “Driver logged training time incorrectly as off-duty”. The edit and annotation are sent to the driver to verify. The edit is not accepted until the driver confirms it and resubmits the RODS. Q: How should a driver account for hours-of-service generated on multiple devices, when the data from one or more devices cannot be transferred? A: All required RODS information must be available for review by enforcement officials. If the driver uses multiple ELDs that are not compatible (e.g., the data file from one system cannot be uploaded into the other system), the driver must either enter the missing duty status information in the ELD currently being used, or provide a printout from the other system(s) for the relevant days.
Q: What are the options for ELDs to electronically transfer data?
A: An ELD must be able to either: • Transmit data using wireless Web services and email, or • Transfer data locally using a thumb or flash drive (USB2.0) and Bluetooth®. A driver must also be able to provide either the display or a printout to an authorized safety official on request. For more FAQs on the ELD Rule, please visit www.fmcsa.dot.gov/elds/faqs.