The Electronic Logging Device (ELD) is a device that commercial drivers use to keep track of their Hours of Service (HoS). They are required to do so by law, as mandated by the Department of Transportation. By using an ELD, you eliminate traditional paper logging. You save a lot of time, money, and paper. The ELD records the information, so you do not need electronic onboard recorders.
If you are a driver who logs record duty service for more than eight days a month, you need an ELD. All drivers must comply with this law. This law applies to commercial bus and truck drivers. If you are a driver traveling in Canada or Mexico, you require an ELD.
You will face repercussions if you do not comply with these rules and operate without this device. You will have to pay many heavy fines and penalties. Moreover, drivers who work without an ELD can be put out of work. They can be declared out of service. Your license can also be affected. With no job, they will also earn no money. So if you are a newbie starting in the trucking industry, the first thing you must do is buy an ELD.
Features of an ELD
Here are some of the main features of the ELD.
Replaces Paper Logs
The primary purpose of an ELD is to record HoS online. This feature prevents you from going through tons of paperwork. The ELD records all data automatically and presents it in a standardized format. This information can be printed and immediately shown to the authorities. Thus, drivers don’t have to deal with loads of paperwork and can solely focus on the drive.
The ELD connects itself to the vehicle’s internal diagnostic ports. It can monitor fault codes and engine behavior. Therefore, you can detect malfunctions early as the device will notify you of any abnormal behavior. This behavior will prevent any mishap from occurring.
The device will also give you notifications in real-time. It enables the prevention of any mishaps at the earliest stage. The ELD can also generate a detailed report of what is going on in the engine. Thus, you get precise information and can formulate potential solutions for the problems.
Automated IFTA calculation
At the end of every quarter, fleets must provide IFTA reports to the Department of Transportation. Filing IFTA reports is a tedious and time-consuming task.
The ELD’s main job is to reduce the burden of paperwork. It applies to the IFTA calculation- they do the necessary calculations. Since they are automated reports, they are always precise as well. It reduces audit risks as the reports are always accurate.
Benefits Of An ELD
Apart from these, the ELD also offers several other benefits that improve your quality of work. With an ELD, you can unlock unforeseen potential for your vehicle.
Insurance can cover losses in case of an accident to an extent; hence is a must for every driver. Of course, insurances are expensive; but they are a crucial long-term investment.
Do you know that insurance companies offer discounts when they see that the fleet is taking appropriate response measures? Installing an ELD is considered one of those grassroots measures. Having an ELD enables you to enjoy insurance premium benefits. Many insurance companies give certain insurance benefits to truck drivers with ELDs.
Having an ELD makes a driver eligible for tax benefits as well.
Safer Road Travel
The ELD is attached to the vehicle’s engine. It also records harsh braking, speeding, and other unsafe driving practices. This information can help drivers be conscious of their driving habits and prevent accidents.
An ELD also ensures proper maintenance of all commercial vehicles. As the device is connected to the engine, it can detect any anomalies before failure occurs. It makes drivers keep their trucks in perfect shape to ensure uninterrupted work.
Some ELDs also have GPS tracking features. With this, you keep an eye on the vehicle 24/7 and plan your routes! Along with that, it also maintains a log of location history.
Driver Habits and Behaviour
The ELD tracks not only vehicle activity but also driving behavior. With this device, managers can identify harsh driving, acceleration, braking, etc.
This data can help you determine patterns that your drivers exhibit. Managers can then work with their drivers- asking them to improve in certain areas. ELDs help you identify high-risk drivers and the ones with the best driving habits. Having a list of high-risk drivers helps prevent accidents on the road. You can provide training to them for the same.
With a list of the best drivers, you can provide incentives and motivate all drivers to adopt good driving habits. Hence, ELDs make the industry safer by eliminating the problems at both ends.
Makes Business More Profitable
ELDs help fleets with organizing and streamlining their operations. With their recording solutions and data collection, they help businesses become more profitable as well.
Businesses can know where their fleets are lacking and know where to improve. They also allow them to explore new opportunities.
It is not all ELDs gather information that is not only relevant to driving but also long-term statistics for the fleet. With this data, businesses can grow faster and more stable pace.
Fuel Use and Fuel Waste
ELDs keep a log of fuel usage as well. With ELDs, you can track fuel consumption with every trip. Additionally, it also maintains a log of idle time, enabling drivers and managers to see how much fuel is wasted. This feature is very crucial considering how fuel prices are skyrocketing every day. With this, you can identify drivers with idle time. Not only will you save fuel but also money- a lot of money in the long run!
Alternatively, you can use fuel cards to keep a check on fuel usage and overall efficiency of your fleets.
ELDs offer much more than just compliance. They can help a fleet manager to optimize every aspect of the fleet and take better decisions for the firm. So don’t buy just any ELD but do a little research to get the best one for your organization.