With the ELD mandate coming up, many fleets and owner/operators have questions about what this means for their fleet, and what the best route to compliance is. For this reason, Continental Commercial Vehicles & Aftermarket has provided the following seven-point checklist for fleets in advance of the mandate.
1. Does your supplier have ELD experience?
In the coming months, before the FMCSA mandate takes effect, more new companies will come to the market, offering ELD solutions. It is important to qualify the supplier’s expertise and experience with ELDs and the FMCSA. Did the supplier provide input to the FMCSA and take part in the Motor Carrier Safety Advisory Committee?
2. What is the supplier’s experience as a technical provider to the Commercial Vehicle industry?
The Commercial Vehicle industry is a complex business with many different regulations and regulating bodies. Because these rules are constantly changing and evolving, it is imperative to have a supplier who is familiar with the industry and can comfortably manage the nuances of an ever-changing marketplace.
3. Is the supplier able to ensure long-term compliance?
For those who have been following the developments of the FMCSA rulings and legislative action on the ELD mandate since its initiation, it is quite clear that the rules and regulations are fluid and ever changing. So it is critical that the ELD supplier you choose is able to stay abreast of all these changes and stay in front of FMCSA rules. It is also important that the ELD equipment investment you make will be able to keep pace with new regulations and requirements.
4. What is the cost of ownership over three or five years?
The ELD mandate is here to stay and businesses will have to acknowledge the cost of long-term compliance with the FMCSA mandate. Not all ELD solutions are created equal. Some require fees and contract commitments, while others are available with no monthly fees or contracts.
5. Does the supplier offer a system that can expand with fleet growth?
As a business grows, it is important to be able to quickly and efficiently keep in step with the FMCSA mandate. Operators who are unable to expand their system as needed to add more vehicles and drivers will lose time and money.
6. Do you operate in Canada, Alaska or oil fields?
The FMCSA regulations are different in the US, Canada and Alaska, as well as oil field operations, so operators will need to make sure that they are in compliance wherever they operate in North America. Some ELD suppliers are only able to provide compliance in the US, so it is important to choose a supplier that can provide software that will keep your operation in compliance wherever a driver may be, and without incurring any additional costs.
7. Will your supplier be able to meet FMCSA’s ELD requirements?
It is especially important to select a supplier that has proven technical and regulatory experience with ELDs. As the FMCSA finalizes its requirements for self-certification, you will need to choose a supplier that will be able to meet those specifications as well as future regulation changes that are expected down the road. As those regulations change, the FMCSA may evaluate ELD suppliers to verify that their ELDs are actually compliant. As a result, a supplier should be considered for its long-term viability and ability to ensure future ELD compliance.