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Cutting through the ELD confusion: here’s what your drivers need to know

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Despite driver protests against the ELD mandate during the weeks leading up to the December 18, 2017 deadline, it is now the law of the land. Understandably, there’s significant confusion among truckers around various ELD use cases, in addition to long-term concerns around how ELDs might impact their careers. Unfortunately, Teletrac Navman’s 2017 Telematics Benchmark Report: U.S. Transportation Edition found 28 percent of fleet owners reportedly have done nothing to alleviate drivers’ worries around ELD use or educate them on how ELDs can improve certain aspects of their work. 

Those 28 percent are missing an important opportunity. Now more than ever, it’s crucial for drivers to understand not only how to operate ELDs themselves, but how they affect (and in some cases change) daily driving situations.

Here’s a checklist of things to address with your drivers as they use their new ELDs. It’s not exhaustive, but it’s a great place to start based on some of the top ELD confusions and misperceptions we’ve seen:

  • ELD malfunctions: If an ELD malfunctions, drivers should report it immediately to the carrier and keep paper record of duty status (RODS) until the ELD is back in service. Make sure your drivers also know how to contact your ELD manufacturer’s support team.
  • Unassigned drive time: If a carrier assigns “Unassigned Driving” events to a driver, the driver is responsible for accepting or rejecting this time via an ELD device. The driver must review any unassigned driving time when he or she logs into the ELD, whether the unassigned records belong to the driver or not.
  • Inspections: Many safety officers and drivers alike don’t fully understand the difference between an AOBRD and an ELD and what to look for during roadside inspections. Therefore, drivers and carriers should be educated on how to handle and explain the type of device being used in roadside inspections.
  • Mandate enforcement: While the ELD runs through April 1, 2018, drivers can still be cited and fined for not having an ELD during this time. The difference is they will not be placed out-of-service, whereas they will after April 1.
  • Edits to driver logs: Unlike AOBRDs, ELD design requirements stipulate that edits of ELD records can be made by both the driver and the carrier. This prevents carriers from making unilateral changes.

As ELDs become part of your drivers’ daily work, new questions will undoubtedly arise. In addition to anticipating those as much as possible, keeping the lines of communication open with your drivers will go a long way in helping them feel supported and confident as they master ELDs.

Check out Teletrac Navman’s ELD solutions here.


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