- Manufacturers of electronic logging devices (ELD) can now register and self-certify their products. However in the 10 weeks this has been an option, only three devices have become registered with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, raising suspicions about companies' product claims.
- Meanwhile, there is mounting demand for ELDs as commercial drivers will soon be required to log electronically as opposed to using a paper log.
- Jon Sockell of Keep Truckin, which makes ELDs, suggests to companies four characteristics to look for when choosing an ELD: an interface that prompts drivers to confirm they're the ones driving rather than someone else; ability to store information in the ELD itself; ability for carriers to edit events with driver approval; and ability to capture vehicle data and include it in output files.
The new logging rule requires truck drivers to convert from paper logbooks to ELDs by December 2017, which will affect about 3 million drivers .There will likely be learning curves with regard to fine-tuning the devices, and on the buyers' side there will be some needed education for identifying the best manufacturers, as they're on the honor system to ensure their dependability.
"Because this is a self-certified process, you the buyer need to take some responsibility to conduct due diligence with any vendor. You'll want to come in with … questions," Sockell told Fleet Owner.
But a well-designed system will save in administrative expenses as processes, such as auditing logs or recording driving time and miles, become automated. ELDs will also give trash haulers and other drivers a safety tool, enabling roadside safety inspectors to identify violations that could lead to injuries and fatalities.