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The ELD Mandate timeline
A timeline of events leading up to 16 December 2019, when drivers of commercial motor vehicles and for-hire private motor carriers will be required to have installed and be using an FMCSA-compliant Electronic Logging Device (ELD).
ELD: Just the facts
Want to find out all the essential facts about the ELD Mandate?
Watch our informative ELD webinar, with guest speaker John Seidl.
All about MiX’s ELD solution
ELDs fitted by MiX Telematics as part of our Hours of Service solution are registered with the FMCSA and fully compliant with their specifications in terms of performance, design and technical specifications.

ELD Timeline Explained

29 Jun 2016
ELD

It may seem like there's plenty of time to go until the FMCSA's final ELD Mandate deadline on December 16 2019, but there are other important dates and deadlines in the three-and-a-half years before then.

However, let's not get ahead of ourselves – it's just as important to look at where the mandate began. We've put together this timeline and the accompanying graphic as the ultimate resource for fleet managers and owners.

The origins of ELDs

Drivers of commercial motor vehicles first started using ELDs (electronic logging devices) in the 1980s. Early adopters tended to be private motor carriers and the first systems operated on batch processing, where all the information is collected and held until being processed as a batch at the end of a specific cycle.

There was no real-time mobile communication of the data – and some of these outdated systems are still in service today.

  • Glossary

    Automatic On Board Recording Device (AOBRD)

    An Automatic On Board Recording Device (AOBRD), is a term used to describe a device installed in a vehicle to log driving hours. Although still used, the term is being phased out to make way for FMCSA-compliant Electronic Logging Devices (ELDs) as mandated in the ELD Final Rule.
  • Glossary

    Commercial motor vehicle (CMV)

    A commercial motor vehicle, or CMV, is a vehicle that is used for business purposes or interstate commerce and meets at least one of the following criteria: weighs more than 10,000 pounds, has a gross vehicle weight rating or gross combination weight rating of more than 10,000 pounds, transports 16 or more passengers not for compensation or nine or more passengers for compensation, or transports hazardous materials in a quantity requiring placards.
  • Glossary

    Duty status

    Also called Record of Duty status or driver log, duty status is the document used by a driver to record his/her driving time.
  • Glossary

    Driver log

    See ‘Duty status’.
  • Glossary

    Electronic logbooks (e-Logs)

    Short for electronic logbooks, which are records of driving hours that are captured and stored electronically using an on-board recording device.
  • Glossary

    Electronic Logging Device (ELD)

    An Electronic Logging Device, or ELD for short, is a device designed to automatically record a driver’s driving time and other aspects relating to Hours of Service (HOS) compliance. The device does this by monitoring a vehicle’s engine and traveling time.

First attempts at mandating electronic logs

The idea of a federal mandate on electronic logging devices goes back to the early 1990s, with initial suggestions being incentive based.

Then in April 2010, CFR 395.16 was announced in the Federal Register. This rule drew the distinction between old devices (Automatic On-Board Recording Device or AOBRDs) and newer technology (Electronic Onboard Recording Devices or EOBRs). However, this never became law as it was shut down by the US Court of Appeals.

Congress passes MAP-21

Two years later the US Congress passes the MAP-21 Act, which requires the FMCSA to write a rule mandating electronic logging devices – this is when the term ELD is born. It replaces the older terms – AOBRDs and EOBRs – with the aim of avoiding confusion around the correct terminology.

Final mandate published

Fast-forward another few years to December 2015, when the FMCSA publishes its ELD Final Rule: the ELD Mandate. The mandate outlines the timeline for compliance, with a final deadline at the end of 2019. It also specifies the required information vendors must gather from any vehicle manufactured in 2000 and later and includes anti-harassment measures for current ELD users.

Going forward

In an effort to make compliance as straightforward a process as possible, the FMCSA has set a number of deadlines that for-hire and private motor carriers must meet. AOBRDs are still allowed in the first phase, but all new devices installed by fleet managers and owners must comply with ELD Mandate standards. This phase ends in December 2017. After that, all AOBRDs must be replaced with certified ELDs.

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