For the past few years the trucking industry has been focusing on electronic logging device (ELD) mandates. The U.S. first published its final ELD mandate in 2015, with fleet compliance starting in December 2017. Canada took a bit longer to release its version, but they finally published their ELD mandate in June 2019. Cross border fleets are expected to comply with both countries regulations, so here are the biggest differences companies should be aware of.
Although U.S. trucks have had to be compliant since December 2017, companies that were equipped with automatic onboard recording devices (AOBRDs) were allowed to be grandfathered in. That grandfathering clause deadline is quickly approaching though. All fleets have until December 2019 to switch over to ELDs.
When they published their ELD rules, Canada announced its own compliance deadline. Initially, there was a proposed four-year implementation period for ELDs, but that was shortened to two years. Canadian fleets have until June 2021 to comply with the ELD regulations, and unlike the U.S. there will not be a grandfather clause for carriers that have existing AOBRDs.
Third-Party Device Certification
Canada strategically waited a few years after the U.S. announced and implemented their ELD mandate so that they could make any necessary adjustments. Although Canada’s ELD rule is largely based on the U.S.’s, one of the major differences between the two is certification.
In the U.S., all ELDs are self-certified. This meant that devices could be modified or tampered with, which is why the Canadian trucking agency lobbied the government to include a third-party certification clause in the ELD mandate. All Canadian carriers will have to get their devices certified by an approved third-party to be compliant. So far the government still has not announced who will be providing third-party certification, but it is expected that they will make further announcements in the coming months.
Another difference between the U.S. and Canada’s ELD rule is how they each recognize personal conveyance time. In the U.S., the mandate does not include a mileage limit for drivers using vehicles for personal conveyance. Drivers are even able to use trucks for personal use when they are laden since the load is not being transported for the commercial benefit of the carrier.
Canada’s ELD mandate does include a personal conveyance limit though. In Canada, personal use will be capped at a distance of 75 km, or 46.6 miles. Drivers from the U.S. that cross into Canada will need to comply with the 75 km limit.
Both Canadian and American carriers are expected to comply with local ELD mandates, meaning that any cross-border trucks will need to be up to date on both country’s rules. With the majority of trans-border freight being moved by trucks, and the deadline for U.S. ELD compliance quickly approaching, now is the time for trucking companies to ensure they are following all the required regulations.