Mobile carriers are shutting down their 3G networks, which may impact motor carriers if their ELDs rely on a 3G network. AT&T already completed its shutdown in February, and T-Mobile will complete the shutdown of Sprint’s 3G CDMA network by March 31.
Other networks will follow.
Any ELD that requires 3G cellular connectivity to perform its functionality will no longer be in compliance with the technical specifications in the ELD rule after the 3G network it relies on is sunset.
When in an area that does not support 3G, a 3G device will register a malfunction. In accordance with 49 CFR 395.34, the carrier has 8 days to get the malfunction resolved, in this case by replacement, unless an extension is granted.
“If your ELD relies on a 3G network, ask your ELD provider about their plan for upgrading or replacing your device to one that will be supported after the 3G sunset, and to complete the necessary actions as soon as possible,” Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration officials wrote in an email. “ Even if an ELD is covered by the extension, fleets must still replace their device by the extension deadline. Once a fleets receives the upgraded or replaced device, they should no longer use paper logs.
FMCSA strongly encourages motor carriers to take the above actions as soon as possible to avoid compliance issues.
3G Sunset Dates
The announced sunset dates below are subject to change. Mobile carriers are planning to retire parts of their networks sooner.
- AT&T 3G: Feb. 22
- Sprint 3G (T-Mobile): March 31
- Sprint LTE (T-Mobile): June 30
- T-Mobile 3G: July 1
- Verizon 3G: Dec. 31
Many carriers, such as Cricket, Boost, Straight Talk, and several Lifeline mobile service providers, utilize the AT&T, Verizon, and T-Mobile networks.
Some portions of carrier 3G networks will be unsupported in advance of the announced sunset dates.