The implications of the recent ELD mandates in the country have changed the lives of truckers and fleet owners. Before ELDs, commercial fleet owners could not track the driver or their driving habits. As a result, they opened themselves up to risks such as vehicle damage, missed deliveries, and dented profits.
Additionally, drivers were made to work beyond their working hours by the carrier, which led to stress and job dissatisfaction.
In response to this dilemma, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) mandated the use of ELDs as part of their safety regulations.
If you’re in the fleet transportation industry and these problems ring true for you, then ELDs, or electronic logging devices, are the solution you’re looking for.
Shippers and carriers cannot pressure truckers to work overtime. ELD protects the truckers through provisions like anti-tampering, allowing them to send written complaints against the carrier, and preventing carriers from editing ELD records unless the driver certifies it.
With this electronic solution, motor carriers and dispatchers can determine the optimal workload for the trucker instead of trying to overwork them.
Violations Of Form And Manner
Truckers mostly face form and manner violations from inspectors, as these are the easiest to detect. Drivers made clerical errors while filling paper logs, which included information such as the number of miles driven, shipping document number, and information relating to the driver and carrier.
ELDs ensure neatly filled up and accurate reports. When the trucker does not have to worry about filling up the logs, they can concentrate on clocking higher miles and be more productive.
HOS (Hours of Service) violations took place before ELDs because truckers did not update their logs. They worked overtime, potentially risking their own safety as well as that of others around them.
An audible warning is given to drivers by ELDs if they are about to commit an HOS violation, so they can get off duty accordingly. As the ELD automatically updates the logs and the driving time, truckers need not worry about working on their logs anymore.
If you aren’t familiar with the rules of ELD compliance, read more at Samsara.com.
The GPS feature in the ELD provides mapping solutions that assist the driver in reaching the destination through the shortest route. This way, fleet operators can stay on schedule in case of any roadblocks and aren’t in a hurry to meet delivery deadlines.
Less Time On Road Inspections
Road inspectors need a compliant vehicle report, which was filled up manually before ELDs were used. They ate into the working hours of the trucker and pay. Reports were rejected by the inspectors citing they were either untidy or lacked the required information.
ELDs have put a stop to such time-consuming road inspections. The trucker just needs to press the DVIR or Driver Vehicle Inspection Report button to generate a compliant vehicle report for the road inspector in a matter of seconds. The generated report is both legible and accurate.
Legal Protection Against Accidents
The greatest fear that every trucker has is being charged in a road accident. The carrier or the trucker has to bear the liability in case of any legal issues. Fleet owners found it difficult, expensive, and time-consuming to prove that the trucker was not negligent.
With ELDs, details about the vehicle’s movement through the accident is recorded. If the other vehicle was responsible for the crash, the trucker could prove they were innocent. This proof tips the case in favor of the trucker, allowing motor carriers to avoid a huge financial liability.
Transparency In Incentives
ELD helps the carrier in selecting the trucker who deserves to be rewarded for their services in a transparent manner.
ELDs give fleet managers relevant information such as driving habits, the violations they have faced, and the fuel efficiency they have achieved. It’s easy to determine who the best driver is when all the parameters are considered. This driver gets the incentive or bonus.
This has a positive impact on the other drivers as well since they would also try to earn a bonus by improving their driving habits.
Highways Are Safer
Most highway accidents occur due to truckers who are fatigued. They pose a risk for the carrier, the public, and the trucker, including their families. Installing an ELD prevents such accidents from happening.
The primary cause of fatigue in truckers is being overworked. When ELDs ensure that the truckers don’t exceed the legal working hours, they will no longer suffer from fatigue and be in better physical health.
ELDs immediately report any fault codes like problems with the tire or brake to both the fleet manager and driver, thereby also preventing accidents.
Since ELDs take care of a lot of things like updating up the driver’s logs and reports required by roadside inspectors, the life of the trucker is less stressful. They can concentrate on their job and pay more attention to their driving performance. Fleet operators don’t need to worry about exceeding their service hours since the ELD warns them well in advance.
All the movements of the trucker are monitored by the ELD, including sudden braking, unnecessary acceleration, sharp turns, or excessive idle time. Recording these metrics is possible because of black box technology, or telematics.
Thanks to telematics systems, fleet managers can analyze the driving habits of the trucker and send the required feedback. To get a glimpse of the role of telematics in your fleet operations, read full article here.
With appropriate feedback and adequate training and corrective measures, the driving habits of the trucker can significantly improve.
Breakdowns are a nightmare for truckers. They need the required backup through timely roadside assistance. The breakdown service representative will be able to easily track the driver with the help of the ELD.
Enjoy Higher Profits With ELDs
ELDs provide a win-win situation for both the fleet owner and the driver. The driver can optimize the working hours and earn a higher pay along with performance bonuses. The fleet owner can earn higher profits with faster deliveries and an efficient workforce.