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R&R Insurance Blog

Electronic Logging Devices Mandate - Implementation and Requirements

Posted by Amy Brennan

white semi truck.jpgThe Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) implemented the new Electronic Logging Device Rule to help create a safer work environment for drivers and make it easier and faster to accurately track, manage, and share data.

An Electronic Logging Device (ELD) is technology that automatically records a driver’s driving time and other hours-of-service (HOS) data. This allows easier, more accurate HOS recordkeeping. An ELD monitors a vehicle’s engine to capture data on whether the engine is running, whether the vehicle is moving, miles driven, and duration of engine operation (engine hours) as well as the date, time, and vehicle location information.

By December 18, 2017, all carriers and drivers subject to the ELD rule must use either an ELD or an automatic on-board recording device (AOBRD) that is compliant with existing regulations. AOBRDs may be used until December 16, 2019, if the devices were put into use before December 18, 2017. Starting December 16, 2019, all carriers and drivers subject to the rule must use ELDs.

The ELD Rule applies to most motor carriers and drivers who are required to keep records of duty status (RODS). This includes trucks, as well as commercial busses. It also applies to drivers domiciled in Canada and Mexico, unless they qualify for an exception to the rule.

The ELD Rule does allow limited exceptions to the ELD mandate, which include:

  • Drivers who operate under the short-haul exceptions may continue using timecards; they are not required to keep RODS and will not be required to use ELDs
  • Drivers who use paper RODS for not more than 8 days out of every 30-day period
  • Drivers who conduct drive-away-tow-away operations, in which the vehicle being driven is the commodity being delivered
  • Drivers of vehicles manufactured before 2000

Beginning on December 18, 2017, a driver using an ELD must have an ELD information packet onboard the commercial motor vehicle (CMV) containing the following items:

  • A user’s manual for the driver describing how to operate the ELD
  • An instruction sheet describing the data transfer mechanisms supported by the ELD and step-by-step instructions to produce and transfer the driver’s hours-of-service records to an authorized safety official
  • An instruction sheet for the driver describing ELD malfunction reporting requirements and recordkeeping procedures during ELD malfunctions
  • A supply of blank driver’s records of duty status (RODS) graph-grids sufficient to record the driver’s duty status and other related information for a minimum of 8 days

Many fleets may be waiting for the mandate deadline before implementing ELDs, but by waiting, drivers are missing out on a number of immediate benefits such as:

  • Avoiding driver harassment
  • Saving time by reducing paperwork
  • Keeping a dispatcher up-to-date on a driver’s status and letting them plan for loads better in light of HOS compliance needs
  • Lessening driver responsibilies so they can focus more on driving and safety 
  • In addition, many systems integrate map and route solutions which can help drivers navigate around construction and avoid high-traffic areas which saves time and brings down fuel costs

Contact a Knowledgebroker at R&R or visit the Frequently Asked Questions page on the FMCSA website for complete information about the ELD Rule.

Topics: trucking compliance, trucking safety, electronic logging devices

Trucking Tidbits: Driver Qualification File – 391.51

Posted by Lynn Reed

Are your driver qualification files ready for inspection? semi driving in mountains.jpgAre they meeting all federal regulations?

Each employee driver should have a two-sided file folder. The left side is for forms from the employee's initial hiring.These forms should be kept for the entire time he or she is employed and 3 years after the driver has left employment. The right side is for forms to be kept for 3 years reoccurring. See the example below:

trucking tidbit folder.png
Additional forms recommended to keep in the file:    

•    Alcohol & Drug Requirement Signature Page
•    Hazmat Training Certification
•    Signed Motor Vehicle Record Release

We advise to keep the items only as long as “legally” necessary and to implement a purging schedule.

Click here for additional trucking resources.

Topics: trucking, trucking compliance, trucking safety

Tidbits On Trucking

Posted by Lynn Reed


Updates to the FMCSA

A motor carrier with a DOT number is required to update information with the FMCSA (Federal Motor Carrier Safety Adminstration) every two years. This is achieved by updating the MCS-150 information. The key is the last two digits of the motor carrier’s DOT number.


  • The last number is the month, with number one being January through zero being October. No one is required to update in November or December
  • The second number from the end is the year determination, even or odd. (ie: 1,3,5,7,9 are odd numbers)
  • Example: DOT #2260594 – to be updated April of every odd year


Two areas that must be updated are the number of power units and the annual miles. If a motor carrier has not done so, then they are “flagged”. This means they are now on the DOT Watch List, which could lead to a visit by the DOT.


Warning vs. Ticket

Did you know that receiving a warning instead of a ticket is not always the best? Both warnings and tickets show up on your CSA score, however, with a ticket you can go to court and if dismissed you can do a “dataQ” and it will be removed. A warning gives you nothing to fight but still shows on your score. http://dataqs.fmcsa.dot.gov


Intrastate vs. Interstate

Did you know that the freight dictates if you are intrastate or interstate? It is in the paperwork.


Example #1: If the pallet is processed in Wisconsin and delivered in Wisconsin but is for a company in another state, it is interstate.


Example #2: A widget comes from overseas – paper work is for delivery to a specific person/customer in Wisconsin - it is interstate. However, if the company buys to stock at their warehouse in Wisconsin and the specific person/customer buys from them later and is in Wisconsin – It is intrastate even though it came from overseas originally.


What is the advice? Motor Carriers should declare they are interstate so they are always in compliance.


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Topics: trucking, trucking compliance, Business Insurance, trucking safety