Make sure the elogs & ELD solution that you are considering has all of these features before you buy.
We have compiled a small list that gets straight to the point – which features should you be looking for when deciding upon an elogs & ELD solution?
It’s important to be informed before deciding on which ELD product is right for you and your business.
As per rules in the FMCSA ELD mandate, when a driver is not logged into the ELD, and their vehicle is in motion, the ELD must then attribute their elogs to an “unidentified driver”.
After the driver logs back into the device, an alert should appear on the screen, immediately showing them the unidentified driving time.
The driver then has the option to attribute the unidentified driving time right then and there, or they can wait to do it later.
In the case of the driver waiting, the alert will then minimize to a specific portion of the screen, showing any unidentified driving time within the past 7 days.
Special driving statuses
While not a mandatory requirement from the FMCSA, special driving statuses are in fact very important to most fleets.
Check to see if the ELD solution you are considering supports (On Duty) Yard Moves and (Off Duty) Personal Conveyance special driving statuses.
By including these special driving statuses, your drivers are able to properly allocate their driving time and avoid editing their logs or even accruing violations.
It’s important to note that these special driving statuses must first be enabled by a driver’s fleet manager, usually from the ELD provider’s web application.
Log edit suggestions for fleet managers
The FMCSA ELD mandate focuses primarily on preventing the harassment of drivers.
One way they do this is by requiring fleet managers to only be allowed to suggest edits to drivers’ elogs, instead of freely editing them.
After a log edit suggestion is made by a fleet manager, the driver can then view the suggestion and decide to accept or reject it.
If the driver accepts the fleet manager’s edit, then the driver’s elogs are updated to reflect the edit.
While drivers are allowed to edit their own elogs freely, the mandate states that driving time can never be edited.
So make sure your ELD provider is following the FMCSA requirements and preventing you from receiving violations.
Automatic changes in duty status
The FMCSA ELD mandate requires ELDs to automatically change a driver’s status to Driving when their vehicle reaches 5 MPH.
But did you know that a driver’s status should also automatically change from Driving to On Duty?
This happens when a vehicle is stopped (meaning at 0 MPH for 3 seconds) for 6 minutes.
After 5 minutes of a vehicle being stopped, an alert should appear on the screen of the elogs application, asking the driver if they are still driving.
If the driver does not act, then the application should automatically change the driver’s status to On Duty, starting from when the vehicle was designated as stopped.
GPS tracking in the event of losing online connection
If a driver’s ELD loses internet connection, ELD providers must provide a way for the device to continue logging the driver’s location.
Make sure the ELD provider you choose is able to provide this feature because all too often drivers will lose internet service when they’re out on the road.
If they’re unable to correctly log their time and location during that internet service outage, then they will be in violation.
ELD providers should also allow for drivers to go back and edit the location of these logs in order to be more specific.
Preventing drivers from interacting with the device while their vehicle is in motion
One of the most important features of a proper elogs application is the locking of the device when a driver’s vehicle is in motion.
Drivers should not be able to interact with the device at all when they are driving.
Extra credit: check to see if the elogs application you’re considering is able to provide a streamlined driving lockdown screen, so that drivers are still able to see important information such as current duty status, driving time left, etc.
Ability to transfer data to DOT officers
Lastly, the FMCSA ELD mandate states that ELDs must be able to transfer data to a DOT officer.
The FMCSA further specifies that the device must be able to display the current day’s elogs and the last 7 days, and the device must be able to transfer the elogs in a .CSV file to the DOT officer.
These two features are mandatory, so make sure that the ELD provider you choose is able to provide both a “DOT inspection mode” or the like, and is able to transfer a driver’s elogs for the past 7 days (and current day) in the standard file format.
After reading this list, we hope that you can now determine the necessary features that every ELD should have.
You should now be armed with enough information to make the right decision when choosing an ELD provider!