April 1st is fast approaching, which means that “soft enforcement” of the ELD mandate is coming to an end. DOT inspectors will now place non-compliant vehicles out of service— instead of only issuing a citation or fine— and inspections may place added emphasis on ELD compliance.
For organizations that recently switched to ELDs, the new technology can create pain points for drivers going through an inspection. What can you do to make sure your drivers are fully prepared for inspection time? We’ve curated the top tips we’ve heard from drivers and fleet managers for you to share with your team.
Top Tips for ELD Success
1) Ensure drivers have the In-Cab kit. The ELD User Manual and DOT Inspection Card should be readily available to drivers at all times. Contact Samsara support if you don't have a copy, or download them here.
2) Familiarize drivers with DOT inspection steps. Make sure drivers know by heart the steps of an inspection and are comfortable transferring ELD data to inspection officers. Practice makes perfect, so consider having "dry-run" inspections with your team. For additional resources and tips, watch our step-by-step tutorial video or check out our tutorial article.
3) Have drivers review their logs throughout the day. Ensuring that on-duty, off-duty and sleeper berth times are accurately recorded will save everyone headaches down the line.
4) Instruct drivers to leave remarks. Adding remarks to duty status helps everyone stay on the same page about driver activity throughout the day.
5) Have drivers certify logs at the end of each shift. Log certification is easiest when a day's activity is still fresh in a driver's mind. Reviewing and certifying their log shortly after a shift will save drivers the hassle of reconstructing that log days later.
6) Ensure drivers sign out at the end of their shift. This will ensure that they're only responsible for the time they drive and guarantees that they'll get credit for their off-duty time before starting their next shift.
7) Show drivers how to use Yard Move and Personal Conveyance. If you've enabled these statuses for your drivers, ensure they select them before moving their vehicle. When selected, these statuses prevent movements across a yard (Yard Move) or a midnight snack run (Personal Conveyance) from counting against available drive time. If these statuses aren't selected before moving their vehicle, ELDs are required to log this time as commercial drive time.
If you already have an ELD-compliant solution from Samsara, check out our Knowledge Base for additional tips for success. Our California-based support team is also prepared to help you troubleshoot issues or answer any of your questions and will have expanded capability available around the April 1st enforcement date.
If you still need to purchase ELDs, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We can help you become ELD compliant quickly and ensure that your vehicles stay on the road.