Since 2017, every truck driver in the United States is required to have an Electronic Logging Device in his vehicle, while some other countries introduced this law as well. This device serves for monitoring data about the maintenance of the truck, along with the driving hours and plenty of other information. Also, it can provide various data to the managers of the fleet.
One of the greatest benefits is the reduced need for paperwork, which most of the truck drivers find annoying, time-wasting, and sometimes complicated.
There are many of these devices available on the market from different manufacturers. You can get info here, about the full list of benefits that ELD provides. Many truck drivers might find this device confusing when they start using it. However, it is simple to use and has an improved interface that saves a lot of time when we compare it to standard paperwork. Here are the most important things that you should know about electronic logging devices.
1. Which Drivers Must Have This Device
According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, every driver whose vehicle is considered to be a CMV, the commercial motor vehicle, need to install an ELD.
A commercial motor vehicle is a truck with a weight that is bigger than 10,000 pounds, which can carry more than 16 passengers as part of the same company, or a vehicle with more than 9 seats for transporting people. Also, every vehicle that is transporting dangerous materials must have an ELD. Moreover, if you avoid installing this device, you might get a big penalty.
2. What Type of Data is ELD Tracking?
The main types of data that every kind of electronic logging device must follow are the time when the engine starts and shuts down, track the time of working, changes of status, and track the movement of the truck. This is very important since the managers in the company can observe the movement of the trucks in their company.
Furthermore, it has an integrated system that will inform the person who is monitoring the truck, in case the driver has stopped for more than 5 minutes, and send a status that is called On Duty Not Driving. This option has many benefits. For example, it can track the time needed for logging and emptying the truck along with the pauses that the driver is making without notifying the manager.
Another great feature is that no one could alter any data in ELD like it was a case with paper documents. Also, it will alarm the company if someone tries to change or even look at data without knowing. The crucial feature of this device and the main reason for its introduction by the law is that the ELD is tracking the driving hours, and prevent drivers from driving more than 8 hours without a pause.
3. The Price of ELD
The market is full of various electronic logging devices. While they all share the main features, you can choose some with a higher-quality and better interface, but they are more expensive. The prices of these devices are between 150$ and 900$. However, even if it sounds too expensive to you, features that the ELD provides could actually save a lot of money for your business.
4. It is Saving Time and Money
If you own a big fleet of trucks, it might seem like a big investment to get an ELD for each truck. On the other side, you will see how these devices will save you time, and raise the productivity of your drivers, which is also cost-effective. According to some researches, using an electronic logging device can improve the time of logging by near 5 minutes. That is almost 20 hours per year, which is not a small amount, especially when you have hundreds of trucks in your business.
The drivers are also satisfied with this system since they need less time to log or empty their trucks. Also, it can save more than 20 hours for drivers in one year, since they won’t need to fill out all those papers anymore. That also leads to an additional 15 minutes of driving time every day, which means shorter work hours, or increased time for pauses. Another money-saving fact is that you don’t have to waste money on papers, storage space for documents, and all additional accessories and devices that come with that.
5. How to Choose a Proper ELD?
We already noted that the market is full of various devices that can monitor the truck hours and other data. However, you should now the main features of some devices that are necessary for the law introduced by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. The device must have an integral synchronization, which means that it can track the engine status, distance driven, and many other data.
Also, it must have the ability to record and track the location of the truck at any time and provide the company with the chart where they can see the working hours, mileage, pauses, time of logging, and other info. Moreover, the device will notify the driver in case he forgot to sign in for some route. There are two types of connection, direct with USB or Bluetooth, or online, through website service and email.
Additionally, it will report any error on the engine, or issue with working hours, location of the truck, and many more. When you are looking for an ELD device, look for one with an improved interface that can fulfill all your needs. Some of the best devices on the market are Geotab, Garmin, Trackit, Gorilla Safety, Omnitracks, and many others.
Like many other businesses, commercial trucking is also implementing digital technologies and starts using all advantages that a business can have from using GPS tracking, truck monitoring, and many other features that the ELD provides. While some countries require you by law to have this device, you should get it even if no one is forcing you, and start using its benefits.