The trucking industry has to finish undergoing a major transformation. All truck drivers need to transition to electronic logging devices (ELDs) from the paper logs that they currently use to document their adherence to federal regulations when it comes to how many hours they spend on the road. Here is some information about the ELDs and the importance of getting ready for this major change.
Trucking Electronic Logging Devices – Are You Ready?
According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, it will likely cost about $1 billion to equip the 500,000 trucking firms in the United States with electronic logging devices. This mandate will impact more than three million U.S. truck drivers.
Many companies have already registered their electronic logging devices with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. Device manufacturers need to ensure that their devices adhere to the technical specifications of FMCSA. More companies will likely enter the market in the upcoming months.
This mandate is a result of the desire of the FMCSA to crackdown on truck drivers who cheat by lying on their paper logs. With electronic logging, it is virtually impossible to cheat on paper logs. The devices are attached to the engine of the semi-truck. The device captures all movement of the truck and records the length of time the truck driver spends behind the wheel. The law prohibits drivers from spending more than 11 hours a day driving.
The FMCSA believes that electronic logging devices will prevent about 1,800 crashes, 550 injuries, and 25 deaths annually by keeping exhausted truck drivers from driving on the roads. Switching to electronic logging devices will also save $1.6 billion in paperwork costs. Law enforcement agencies and motor carriers currently devote a lot of resources to reviewing paper logs.
Some large carriers like UPS, and FedEx already use electronic systems to track the driving time and behavior of their truck drivers. The American Trucking Association, which has many major carriers among its members, is in support of the federal mandate. In fact, the trade group has said that its members look forward to the implementation of the mandate.
Opposition to Electronic Logging Devices
Unsurprisingly, there is also major opposition to electronic logging devices. Most of this resistance is coming from independent drivers who believe the electronic logging devices are too intrusive. However, there are also independent drivers who are more than fine with this new mandate. For example, Ronnie Sellers from Knoxville, Tennessee has an operation consisting of three trucks. He has been using e-logs since 2011. He believes that anyone who complains about e-logs is directly admitting they don’t abide by the law.
Now that it’s December, truck drivers have no choice but to get ready for the shift to trucking electronic devices.