The grass is starting to turn green and flowers are blooming here at Apex. Spring has almost sprung. Winter has come and gone along with the December electronic logging device (ELD) mandate deadline. Yes, we’re talking about ELDs. We’ll be the first ones to admit, we’re guilty of contributing to an overwhelming amount of ELD conversations. Last year we talked a lot about ELDs. Five blogs worth in fact. In those blogs we even took the Nike slogan and told you to “Just Do It,” meaning just get compliant. But as spring approaches so does another important ELD deadline. We’re encouraging any trucking company still waiting to implement their ELD solution to do so within the next month.
Strict ELD Enforcement is Coming
To create an easy transition from paper to electronic logs, the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) created a “soft enforcement” period between December and March 30, 2018. This period precedes April violations that will be issued to trucking companies without an ELD. During the “soft enforcement,” not having an ELD won’t impact CSA scores or result in being placed out-of-service (OOS). Unfortunately, that grace period is ending soon. Come April 1st, the consequences of not having an ELD will change.
Violations that Could Lead to Being Placed Out-of-Service
- Required drivers not having an ELD or AOBRD.
- Using an ELD that is not self-certified with the Federal Motor Safety Administration (FMCSA).
- Using an ELD that can’t produce or transfer data electronically from the device to an authorized law enforcement officer or agent. This also applies if your ELD device is unable to print out the required data. (The same regulations apply to AOBRDs.)
- Drivers falsely representing themselves as belonging to a special driving category where an ELD is not required.
Tips to Avoid Violations and OOS
It might seem like the answer to avoiding an ELD violation is obvious. But there is more that should go into purchasing an ELD solution than just buying the first ELD you find and putting it in the truck.
- Research –It’s very important to verify that your ELD is on the FMCSA self-certified list. It’s just as important to make sure that the ELD is capable of transferring data electronically or to a printer. Doing your research is crucial to prevent violations because of a faulty product. Read customer reviews, compare models and functionality, check for a warranty program, and make sure the ELD provider has good customer service before a problem arises.
We believe in the motto, “it’s better to be safe than sorry,” especially when it pertains being placed out-of-service.
- Keep Records– While most trucking companies do need to comply with the ELD mandate, there are exemptions. If your trucking company falls within the exemption criteria, keep a copy of the exemption in the truck at all times. Show the copy of the documentation to the law enforcement officer or agent.
- Know your CSA Score– According to Overdrive, there are some states that have already begun issuing the CSA-impacting violations. It’s important to know your CSA score and to check it regularly. If you were issued a 395.8(a) violation for not having an ELD before April 1, you can challenge it through the FMCSA DataQs process. For more information on how to keep your CSA score low check out our tips.
As with most things in life, the best practice for avoiding violations and preventing being placed out-of-service is to be prepared. We tested ELDs for over 12 months last year and chose KeepTruckin as our partner to offer our clients a discounted ELD solution. We realize that KeepTruckin might not be the right ELD choice for every trucking company. We encourage you to avoid the stress, find your best ELD solution, and get compliant.
Are you waiting to get an ELD because of cash flow issues? We have the solution! Not only do we offer clients of Apex a discounted ELD solution, we also get you cash for your invoices fast! Those are just two small pieces of our full-service freight factoring advantages. Call us at 855-369-2739 or get started here.