Drivers without ELDs won't be put out of service until April but could face tickets

By Land Line staff | 11/20/2017

If you’re toying with not buying an electronic logging device and just taking your chances, for the first few months, you won’t be put out of service and violations won’t count against you. But, the answer on whether you will get a ticket isn’t as clear.

The FMCSA hosted an electronic logging device update for the media on Monday to answer questions about the pending mandate that goes into effect Dec. 18.

In an effort to clear up some of the confusion around the upcoming ELD mandate, the FMCSA updated reporters on several issues including enforcement, personal conveyance rules and rules for agricultural haulers.

With regard to enforcement, Joe DeLorenzo, director of the agency’s office of compliance and enforcement, said drivers could still be cited for not having an ELD after Dec. 18, but it won’t put them out of service and won’t count in the Compliance Safety Accountability program’s safety measurement system. That all will begin on April 1 of next year. He says whether or not a state issues a ticket will be up to the state itself.

Land Line Now’s Terry Scruton asked DeLorenzo to walk the media through what would happen to a driver who did not have an ELD in his or her truck after Dec. 18 and was pulled in for an inspection.

“If a driver gets stopped after Dec. 18, the first and foremost important thing is, are they in compliance with the hours of service regulations?” DeLorenzo said. “So if they pull in and the answer to that question is ‘yes,’ and they have a paper log that shows they are in compliance, then they will be cited for the violation. That violation won’t count against their SMS score, and they will be allowed to continue on during that period between December and April.

“The question about tickets comes up often. Whether or not a state issues a ticket is really up to them. It’s discretion on their part,” DeLorenzo said. “We are working with the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance and our law enforcement partners to try and be consistent about that.”

He stressed that the December to April timeframe is one to assist drivers in coming into compliance with the regulations.

As for the personal conveyance issue, DeLorenzo said the agency plans to publish a guidance to address that as well as issues faced by agricultural haulers in the next couple of weeks. The agriculture haulers will get a 90-day waiver from the mandate to give the agency more time to consider an exemption request filed earlier this year.

Land Line Now Senior Correspondent Terry Scruton contributed to this report.



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