Editorial update

It’s official: Canada will require the use of electronic logging devices (ELDs) starting January 1, 2023. This latest and final extension will ensure that affected carriers have enough time to purchase and install ELDs.

“Based on updates from our government partners at CCMTA and provincial associations, it is our clear understanding all jurisdictions will be ready to start enforcement on January 1,” said Geoff Wood, senior vice president of policy for the Canadian Trucking Alliance. “But, if there’s unforeseen circumstances that lead to a jurisdiction not being ready to enforce, other jurisdictions that are ready and prepared will not be held back and will go forward. The industry has been well prepared for this rule for a long time and has waited long enough for enforcement. It’s time enforcement begins.”

The mandate, which will make the trucking industry more regulated in Canada, also applies to commercial buses and will require third-party certification of all ELDs.

The U.S. and Canadian ELD mandates

The FMCSA has already announced the ELD mandate for the U.S. It is set to take effect on January 1, 2023. On the other side of the border, the CCMTA (Canadian Council of Motor Transport Administrators) is also in the process of finalizing the Canadian ELD mandate proposal.

Although the Canadian ELD mandate is being developed to increase safety in the Canadian trucking industry and avoid harassment and driver coercion, there is another reason. Considering how both countries trade about $662 billion worth of services and goods annually, the drivers and fleets responsible for that cargo will have to comply with changing regulations on both sides.

The good news is that because Canada is hoping to align a good bit of their ELD mandate’s provisions and specifications with the ELD mandate of the United States, there are going to be many similarities. This makes it easier for carriers to adhere and comply with the ELD rules in both countries.

However, there are still some differences between the U.S. and Canada ELD mandate. And although the Canadian ELD mandate still has some time to go, knowing these differences will help truck drivers and carriers in both countries.

The differences between the U.S. and Canadian ELD mandates.

1. Data transfer to enforcement

There are a few major differences in the data transfer methodologies in the U.S. and Canada ELD mandates.

For instance, the U.S. ELD mandate doesn’t require ELDs to measure rule sets within the device. However, the Canadian ELD mandate defines that an ELD solution can measure and comprehend a Cycle 1, 2 and above the 60th parallel rules.

On the other hand, the U.S. ELD mandate requires carriers to send detailed files/reports of eight-day log data to enforcement. However, as per the Canadian ELD mandate, carriers won’t be required to send detailed files. They will only be required to transfer/share the 14-day log data in PDF. Also, the files are going to be non-editable.

Fleets will still need the display screen with all the details for enforcement agencies and DOT inspectors.

2. Location data sources

When manufacturers update their ELDs to comply with the U.S. ELD mandate, they are required to get a location for several events like yard moves, personal conveyance, duty status, or unassigned vehicles moves. According to the federal government, the ELD manufacturers should use the Geographic Names Information System (GNIS) file of all identities and locations in the United States.

On the other hand, the ELD mandate in Canada requires the government to supply ELD vendors with the final file that they can use to get distance and direction.

3. Differences in personal conveyance

When it comes to personal conveyance, the U.S. ELD mandate doesn’t have any time or distance restrictions. The Canadian ELD mandate, however, will require the ELD supplier to measure 75 km within 24 hours. If a truck driver’s personal conveyance exceeds the 75 km mark within 24 hours, the system should automatically change the status from ‘personal conveyance’ to ‘driving’.

Similarities between U.S. and Canadian ELD mandates

While the Canadian ELD mandate has yet to finalize the functions of its ELDs, we can expect some level of similarities on these aspects:

  • Data collection. ELDs should automatically record driving time. It should also collect other additional information from the vehicles, e.g., location, engine hours, miles driven, movements of the vehicle, etc.
  • Driver notifications. ELDs are required to generate an alert in the event of vehicle malfunction or when there is “unassigned driving time” on a driver’s log.
  • Sharing of information. Reports generated by the ELDs when truck drivers are checked by law enforcement should be in a standardized format for clarity.
  • HOS entries. Drivers will still have control over their HOS entries.

What’s next regarding the Canadian ELD mandate?

The Canadian Council of Motor Transportation Administrators (CCMTA) forecasts the final regulation in Gazette II by Q4 2017. There could be some changes when the rule is finally published.

If you want a reliable ELD solution to help with your compliance needs, request a free demo of the Motive ELD solution today.