About the Canadian ELD mandate—so far

Fred Fakkema, Vice President of Compliance, Zonar By Fred Fakkema
VP of Compliance, Zonar
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As of June 13, 2019, the Canadian ELD mandate is final. However, federally regulated, commercial fleets in compliance with the U.S. ELD mandate won’t necessarily be in compliance with the Canadian ELD mandate, even though the two feature many of the same provisions. There are significant differences.

For the 20 to 30% of U.S.-based fleets, and more than 150,000 Canadian-based fleets ,that regularly cross the border, the mandate will have a significant impact. If this includes your fleet, read on.

Key takeaways you need to know

One of the biggest differences between the two ELD mandates is the need for third-party verification. Canadian ELD requires it; U.S. ELD does not. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) allows U.S. ELD providers to certify their own devices and technology.

Problem: Doing so makes it difficult for those using the technology to know whether or not the ELD actually complies with requirements. In 2017, the FMCSA found that approximately 300 ELD devices in the U.S. failed to be compliant.

Even today, some carriers still have problems with ELD technology, particularly around data transfer, because providers are allowed to certify their own devices instead of also being certified by a third party.

Canadian ELD hopes to avoid such problems by requiring that each ELD is certified by an accredited certification body. Fewer devices are expected to be certified and deemed compliant—and therefore available for carriers.

The expected deadline for compliance with the Canadian ELD mandate is June 12, 2021, twenty-four months from the time the rule was finalized. Over the next two years, Canadian ELDs are expected to be developed, tested and certified, and carriers are expected to have them installed by the deadline.

Unlike the U.S. ELD mandate, the Canadian ELD mandate will not grandfather in AOBRD devices beyond June 12, 2021. If your fleet’s still using AOBRD, now’s the time to move to ELD to ensure compliance with both mandates.

Planning your next steps

As of this article’s initial publication, no carrier has yet been certified for Canadian ELD because Transport Canada is developing the certification process, which is expected to take the first 12 months of the 24-month timeline. Once the certification process is complete, ELDs can be tested and certified to meet Canadian ELD requirements.

When the time comes, partner with a provider that worked with Transport Canada, Canadian Trucking Alliance and CCMTA on certification if you can. That provider will be better equipped to set you and your fleet up for a successful transition and ensured compliance.

Such an ELD provider will also help you:
  • understand the differences between the two mandates
  • know if one or more exemption applies to your fleet
  • develop a law-enforcement checklist to guide drivers through roadside inspections

Also, partner with a provider that offers more than just ELD devices. Research that provider’s industry credibility and longevity. If possible, partner with a provider that has its own in-house team of compliance experts who’ll work with you to understand and adhere to all applicable nuances of both ELD mandates.

Again, if your fleet’s still using AOBRD, now’s the time to move to ELD to ensure compliance with both mandates because there’s no indication the Canadian ELD mandate will grandfather in your devices. Besides, you have until December 16, 2019, to move to ELD to comply with the U.S. mandate. May as well prepare for both at the same time.

More about the Canadian ELD mandate

CCMTA: Canadian ELD Technical Standard

FleetWarrior: The Canadian ELD Rule is Final: What you need to know

FleetWarrior: Preparing for Canada’s ELD Mandate: Tips for U.S. Fleets Crossing the Border

About Zonar

Founded in 2001, Zonar has pioneered smart fleet management solutions throughout trucking and vocational industries. Zonar helps fleets of all sizes maximize the use of their assets with technology solutions dedicated to improving compliance, efficiency, maintenance, safety, and tracking. Cloud-based services with open APIs drive Zonar’s smart fleet solutions by making it easy for fleet owners and managers to stay connected to their fleets and operators to dispatch. Headquartered in Seattle and part of the Continental AG family—a global leader in automotive technology— Zonar also has a Technology Development Center in downtown Seattle, a regional office in Cincinnati and a distribution center outside of Atlanta.

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