MILTON, Ont. – With the Electronic Logging Device (ELD) mandate in the U.S. just around the corner, Mike Millian, president of the Private Motor Truck Council of Canada (PMTC) took the opportunity at a seminar today to refresh everyone on the U.S. ELD rules, and give an update on where Canada is with its own mandate.
“Compliance in the U.S. is December 18, 2017,” Millian reminded the room. “So anyone operating in and to the States as of the 18th has to have an ELD installed and active in their truck.”
The catch is, if you have an automatic on-board recording device (AOBRD) installed — which is not compliant — before the December 18 deadline, the deadline for your fleet to get ELDs is extended until December 2019.
This has created a loophole, Millian said, that some fleets have taking advantage of.
“Some people have a strategy that they are going to rush out and get AOBDRs that aren’t compliant so they can bypass the regulation for another two years,” he said. “That is a flawed strategy at best.”
Plus, he said, even though the deadline is two months away, if you don’t have ELDs in your trucks by now, and you have trucks going to the States, you’re already behind on what you should be doing.
Millian said the only exemptions are those who drive less than eight days out of a 30-day period; driveaway and towaway operations; trucks rented for 8 days or less; and trucks older than model year 2000.
Millian’s biggest frustration with the rule is the fact that there is no third-party certifying ELDs and manufacturers have been given the go-ahead to self-certify that these products meet FMCSA requirements.
“The FMCSA is not certifying these devices,” he said. “I cannot stress that enough…just because they are on the FMCSA website on the list, doesn’t mean they are complaint…It’s the most asinine thing I’ve ever heard but that’s what the government has decided…they take the manufacturers’ word for it.”
Some of the manufacturers even self-certified their devices before the FMCSA rules even came out, he said.
Unfortunately, Canada looks like it also may be heading into the same self-certifying directions.
“Transport Canada has said it will not be certifying ELDs,” Millian said. “However, the Canadian Council of Motor Transport Administrators (CCMTA) is looking for a body for certify ELDs in Canada.”
Right now, Canada is still waiting for an ELD mandate to be officially set in motion. According to Millian, Transport Canada was scheduled to meet with the Treasury Board in October, but the appointment has since been pushed back to December. Right now, the earliest time that the ELD mandate could be set in Canada is spring 2019, he said.
Because of all the delays, Millian said he thinks instead of a two-year phase in period for Canada, there will only be one.
“We will push back hard to get two years,” Millian said. “One year is pretty short to have all those devices installed.”