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What the ELD (Electronic Logging Device) Mandate Means for Fleet Operators

Fleet operators across the USA are faced with the biggest challenge they have perhaps ever encountered, thanks to the ELD (Electronic Logging Device) Mandate that comes into force this month (December, 2019). 

Below, we will explain what the mandate requires, and provide a brief explanation of what an ELD is, and how the change will affect fleet operators. The basic premise is that the ELD will replace paper-based logging systems with a digital one, which will make it easier to get the required information to the recipients quickly and efficiently.

What the Mandate Requires

As of December 16th 2019, many of the vehicles on the roads in the USA will be required to have replaced their Automated Onboard Recording Devices (AOBRD) with the newer type ELD. The reason behind the mandate is to enable easier tracking and logging of vehicles that are governed by federal hours of service regulations and to hold records of duty status (RODS) paperwork.

This will include all commercial buses as well as trucks, and will be strictly regulated – remember – it will become a legal requirement to have an ELD in your vehicles by the given date. The demand for ELD’s has, as would be expected, rocketed in recent months, as many fleets have yet to change their devices to the new type. In short, fitting an ELD should make it far easier for fleet controllers – and drivers – to monitor and record the hours that a driver has covered, saving time and effort in getting that information to where it is required.

Perhaps the biggest problem for fleet operators who have yet to change to the ELD is choosing the right one. Many manufacturers are looking to capitalize on a massive market. Still, you need to ensure that the items you choose are the right one for the particular trucks or vehicles you run, for your sort of business, and also within the right price range. If you want detailed information on some of the best models, check out https://bestelddevices.org and we’ll tell you more about the ELD and how it works, so we can help you make your decision.

What is an ELD Device?

The Electronic Logging Device (ELD) is a small unit that will fit into the cab of the truck or bus and will record the amount of time that a driver has spent on the road. That’s not all, however, as these devices are designed to be more accurate than the previous type of logging device, and can also record – via the engine of the vehicle itself – where it is precisely, and gather whether the vehicle has strayed off course – the course having been logged into the device – and more. 

The amount of information these devices can provide even extends to on and off hours, the length of time the engine has been running, and more. Any ELD fitted to a vehicle must comply with FMCSA requirements, so you need to ensure that you choose one that is certified. You also need to make sure that the model you choose does the job your fleet requires, as there are different types that may apply to larger or smaller fleets of vehicles.

There are – of course – costs involved that you will want to compare, and you will be offered a choice of one-off costs – ideal for smaller fleets – or monthly, yearly, and ongoing rates for the use of your ELD. Usually, the supplier will charge you a one-off upfront fee and then a monthly usage cost from then on – much like many smartphone packages. 

We recommend that you take a good look at the descriptions in the reviews we have linked to as they are detailed and comprehensive, and give you some very useful ideas as to the cost of different packages. You may already have an idea of the ELD you want to use, so it’s also worth checking out various deals across the board. Whatever you do, make sure that you are up to date and compliant by 16th December, as from that date, it will become a legal requirement to have your vehicles fitted with ELDs.

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What the ELD (Electronic Logging Device) Mandate Means for Fleet Operators