The Canadian Minister of Transport mandated the use of ELDs (electronic logging devices) by federally regulated commercial truck and bus operators, completely replacing the use of paper-based daily logbooks. Although enforcement will not be until June of 2022, this was highly expected, as the U.S. had enforced their ELD Mandate a few years ago that had already affected over-the-boarder drivers.
Goals of the Mandate
The overall goal of the Canadian ELD Mandate is to improve the safety of drivers and others on the road. By eliminating fatigue and improving the safety of the drivers, violations and fines will be cut down. In 2019, 25% of violations were due to drivers exceeding the limit on hours of service (HOS). The Canadian ELD Mandate is also trying to curb unfair competition. Before the Mandate, companies weren’t following the same guidelines – they were not enforcing routine breaks and they were violating hours of service to try to have an edge on their competitors. The Mandate allows for an even playing field where all companies will have a fair chance.
The most important goal is arguably improving efficiency. Fleets would use paper logs, and this would lead to inaccuracy on tracking hours, unreadable handwriting and sometimes lost paper logs. Roadside inspections would take a considerable amount of time because a driver’s paperwork would not be in order and sometimes would lead to fines. By making the paper forms electronic, ELDs will be able to track the exact hours your drivers have been on the road and log when they took their stops. This will lead to faster inspections and less fines.
What you should know
Canadian ELDs must be third-party certified. This certification will enforce overall compliance and deter device tampering. When the third-party is selected, software, hardware and applications will need to be tested to be accredited. Any US based carriers who travel into Canada will need to have a Canadian-certified ELD. Although many Canadian companies have adopted the U.S. Mandate rules, there will be some differences in the two.
Difference in Canadian Mandate vs the U.S. Mandate:
Rental trucks used for 30 days or less are exempt
Drivers who “pick up” incorrect unassigned driving time can “put it back” if they incorrectly assigned it to themselves
Personal use option must disable if the driver has driven 75 km a day
ELD must warn drivers when they are running out of HOS
Roadside transfer will send a data package to an email address that is typed in by the driver and will include a PDF file of the logs and a .csv file that can be deciphered
Choosing an ELD provider is not an easy process. Many businesses waited too long during the U.S. Mandate, and had to pay fines or adopted a quick solution that they regretted later because it didn’t fit their needs. For more tips to better prepare yourself, you should take a look at lessons learned from the U.S. Mandate, so you’re not left behind.