In the world of trucking, it’s not difficult to violate rules at some point, especially with the long list of new violations that appeared along with the ELD mandate.  Anxiety about their ability to avoid ELD violations has many truckers on edge.  In addition to HOS-related violations that impact their CSA scores, they must worry about ELD violations as well.

Is there a simple solution for avoiding ELD violations?  The answer is: yes.  Here are a few tips that can help.

ELD Violations that Impact CSA Scores

There are 22 ELD-related violations that are broken into 4 categories:

  • Incomplete/wrong log
  • EOBR-related
  • False log
  • Other log/form and manner

To get a detailed breakdown of these HOS and ELD-related violations go to the FMCSA’s SMS Methodology document.  

Actionable Tips to Keep You Ahead of Violations

It would be great if we could give you one simple solution for avoiding ELD violations.  But, unfortunately, things tend to be complicated when it comes to ELD standards.  So, instead, we will point out a few areas of your operation you can focus on to decrease the chance of getting hit with fines or penalties.  

  • Use pre-employment screening program reports (PSPs) when hiring.  The reports provide violation and accident information from an applicant’s driving history. The information also tells you if a driver needs additional HOS and ELD training.
  • Ongoing driver training is vital to helping you avoid violations.  The training provides important information to help drivers understand violations and how they affect CSA scores. 
  • Conduct compliance checks during maintenance or repair.  Provide a checklist of all documentation that should be onboard such as user manuals, instruction sheets, etc.  
  • Audit drivers log entries regularly.  Many solutions make it easy to search for HOS violations and errors. 
  • Watch for and challenge incorrect ELD violations.  These are rare, but they can happen.  If so, the FMCSA allows you to challenge and perhaps remove the incorrect violation.  Here is more information about this process.
  • Choose a reliable, accurate ELD solution.  Of course, this is easier said than done.  Although a device is on the list of FMCSA’s self-certified ELDs, this may not be enough.  Self-certified does not mean they are compliant.  So, it’s crucial to choose a reliable provider who supports their products.

Hopefully, these tips will help you make an informed choice and prevent any unexpected consequences.

What Happens If Truckers Violate the ELD Mandate?

The purpose of the ELD mandate is to improve highway safety for CMV drivers and the other drivers in their path.  So, the penalties for non-compliance are harsh.  But, you want to be a safe driver and do your best to abide by the rules.  Of course, sometimes things happen, and you end up in violation after all.  If you find yourself in this predicament, what can you expect?  Take a look:

1)  ELD violation fines can range from $1,000. to $10,000.  

2)  Non-exempt drivers can be placed OOS for non-compliance.

3)  ELD violations are in categories by “severity of weight” scores.  For instance, failure to use the appropriate method to record HOS and provide supporting documents has a severity weight of 7.  The severity weight for driving while sick or fatigued is 10.  The higher the weight and the more recent the violation, the worse the score and the higher the fine.

4)  Violations result in more roadside inspections and fines or penalties that can target both the driver and carrier.  They also result in a downgraded safety rating for the company.

With these things in mind, you want to be sure you have a reliable electronic logging device.  No one wants to face the above penalties and fines.  So, protect yourself and your business. 

How to Choose a Reliable ELD Provider

Finding a reliable compliance partner is vital to a successful operation.  These are a few ways to ensure that you’re choosing the best provider:

  1. Read customer reviews – but check the dates. Reviews about previous versions may not apply.
  2. Look for a solution that offers more than cellular connectivity methods.  One that offers Bluetooth and USB 2.0 is a good choice.
  3. Look for user-friendly devices to reduce the chance of form and manner errors. 
  4. Choose a solution that makes it easy to view HOS violations and form and manner errors.

Preventing ELD Violations the TruckingOffice Way

Violations affect your CSA score and can have an impact on insurance premiums.  They can also affect the quality of loads you get.  To ensure you have an ELD solution you can rely on, consider our TruckingOffice ELD solution. With TruckingOffice, you’re assured of getting an ELD solution that has easy plug-and-play functionality. As well as reasonable prices, and the level of customer support you need and deserve.  We offer monthly or annual plans that allow you to choose the best options for your operation.  So, unless you qualify for the ELD exemptions set forth by FMCSA, you owe it to yourself to check out our system now. 

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