Omnitracs' Road Ahead blog

These 5 tips will assist drivers with the final ELD deadline

Michael Ahart
Michael Ahart
Vice President of Regulatory Affairs

In just under one week, all motor carriers and drivers subject to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) Electronic Logging Device (ELD) rule will be required to use an ELD. This deadline also means an end to the use of the grandfathered Automatic On-Board Recording Devices (AOBRDs). Motor carriers and drivers utilizing an AOBRD must have a fully-operational ELD installed by December 17, 2019.

Ensuring that you are using a registered ELD that is capable of transferring an electronic Records of Duty Status (eRODS) file is highly fundamental for guaranteed compliance.  While you can easily determine if your device is registered with the FMCSA, you must still take proactive measures to verify it is running in ELD mode and capable of transferring an eRODS file.

Determining if you are using a device in ELD mode is as easy as verifying the device has the capability to transfer an eRODS file. The in-cab eRODS transfer driver instruction sheet is a step-by-step resource that will help you understand if your device supports the eRODS data transfer mechanisms.  Please keep in mind that you should never send an eRODS file unless instructed by an authorized safety official.  All eRODS files are transmitted to the FMCSA, and you cannot transfer an eRODS file to yourself.

These 5 tips on the final ELD rule will assist drivers in any potential future interactions with law enforcement:

  1. A driver must always have a user manual describing how to use the ELD on hand.  If the user manual is electronic, the driver must know how to readily access it.
  2. Drivers can utilize an in-cab instruction sheet describing the data-transfer mechanisms supported by the ELD and step-by-step instructions to produce and transfer their Hours of Service (HOS) records to an officer (eRODS).
  3. Drivers can use an in-cab instruction sheet for ELD malfunction reporting and recordkeeping requirements during an ELD malfunction; this sheet may be combined with the eRODS transfer instruction sheet.
  4. A supply of blank Records of Duty Status graph-grids are sufficient for recording drivers' required HOS data for a minimum of 8 days.
  5. Drivers must only operate with an ELD that is capable of producing and transferring an eRODS file.

Learn more about the upcoming ELD deadline by reading our blog post from last week. Safe driving!