Photo: ERoad

Photo: ERoad

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration announced it will hold a public meeting May 9 to discuss technical specifications for electronic logging devices that are scheduled to become mandatory for trucking fleets this December.

This meeting will be a forum for discussion of the minimum requirements for ELDs and is being held to help manufacturers produce ELDs that will comply with the ELD Rule.

On December 16, 2015, FMCSA published a final rule requiring motor carriers to start using ELDs (80 FR 78292). The rule included detailed performance and design requirements for ELDs to, as FMCSA says, "ensure the devices produce accurate, tamper-resistant records with a uniform file format and consistent displays."

ELD manufacturers are required to self-certify that their devices comply with the ELD rule and register the devices with FMCSA. A list of self-certified and registered ELDs can be found at​ELD/​ELDList.aspx.

However, many ELD providers have expressed concern about the self-certification and registration process, especially the data file that will be required to be able to share data from the ELD with enforcement officials.

In addition, "there are a lot of new entrants into the ELD industry who might not have the deep operational background that will be asking some very basic questions," says Joel Beal, general manager of Loadtrek, who has been in the electronic logs business since 1998. "I have been a little surprised at some of the elementary questions I've heard," he told HDT via e-mail. "Always good to ask if you are not sure, of course. It's just that this flood of companies new to trucking lack some basic understanding of some admittedly illogical rules."

Motor carriers subject to the ELD rule are required to operate registered ELDs by the compliance date of Dec. 18, 2017. Motor carriers that operate with automatic onboard recording devices (AOBRDs) prior to December 18, 2017 and are subject to the ELD rule, have until December 16, 2019 to transition from AOBRDs to ELDs.

The meeting will be held from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the U.S. DOT headquarters in Washington, DC. Attendees must pre-register by April 25, 2017. Questions may be submitted in advance. For detailed information, see: