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FAQ Get answers to ELD-related questions

FMCSA provides answers to frequently asked questions about ELDs. Consult these FAQs when you have an ELD-related question, as the answer may already be at your fingertips.

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The driver can either, (1) print out their hours-of-service from the other motor carrier; (2) if operating with compatible devices, the ELD data can be transferred between the motor carriers with the driver's approval; or (3) manually add the hours of service while operating for that motor carrier into the current ELD using the editing and annotation functions of the ELD.

Last Updated : December 12, 2017

Yes. Drivers can drive CMVs equipped with ELDs and still use their exception. A motor carrier may configure an ELD to show the exception for drivers exempt from using the ELD, or use the ELD annotation to record the status.

Last Updated : March 22, 2017

The ELD rule does not change any of the current hours of service exemptions. Therefore, motor carriers that meet the exemptions defined in §395.1 are not subject to Part 395, including the ELD rule while they are operating under the terms of the exemption. The duty status of the driver may be noted as either off-duty (with appropriate annotation), or "exempt." Learn more about the agriculture exemption.

Last Updated : July 12, 2017

"Paper RODS" means RODS that are not kept on an ELD or automatic onboard recording device (AOBRD), but that are either recorded manually (in accordance with 49 CFR 395.8(f)) or on a computer not synchronized with the vehicle or that is otherwise not qualified to be an ELD or AOBRD. Printouts of RODS from ELDs are the reports that ELDs must be able to generate upon request from an authorized safety official, per section 4.8.1 of the ELD rule.

Last Updated : March 28, 2017

An edit is a change to an electronic logging device (ELD) record that does not overwrite the original record, while an annotation is a note related to a record, update, or edit that a driver or authorized support personnel may input to the ELD. Section 49 CFR 395.30(c)(2) requires that all edits, whether made by a driver or the motor carrier, be annotated to document the reason for the change. For example, an edit showing time being switched from "off duty" to "on-duty not driving" could be annotated by the carrier to note, "Driver logged training time incorrectly as off duty." This edit and annotation would then be sent to the driver for approval.

Last Updated : March 28, 2017

Yes. A driver can use annotations to indicate the beginning and end of a period of authorized personal commercial vehicle use, or yard moves, as well as other special driving categories, such as adverse driving conditions (49 CFR 395.1(b)) or oilfield operations (49 CFR 395.1(d)).

Last Updated : March 28, 2017

Both the driver and authorized carrier staff can make limited edits to an ELD record to correct mistakes or add missing information. All edits must include a note (annotation) to explain the reason for the edit. In addition, the driver must confirm (certify) that any carrier edit is accurate, and resubmit the records. If the driver chooses not to re-certify RODs, this is also reflected in the ELD record. The ELD must keep the original, unedited record, along with the edits. Example: a carrier edits a record to switch a period of time from "off-duty" to "on-duty not driving", with a note that explains "Driver logged training time incorrectly as off-duty". The edit and annotation are sent to the driver to verify. The edit is not accepted until the driver confirms it and resubmits the RODS.

Last Updated : March 28, 2017

Although the ELD reflects the driver's RODS, the driver and carrier share responsibility for the integrity of the records. The driver certification is intended, in part, to protect drivers from unilateral changes. However, if the driver is unavailable or unwilling to recertify the record, the carrier's proposed edit and annotation would remain part of the record.

Last Updated : March 28, 2017

Yes. The original ELD records are retained even when allowed edits and annotations are made. If the driver cannot independently access the records from the ELD, the motor carrier must provide access on request. However, the right to access is limited to a six-month period, consistent with the period during which a motor carrier must retain drivers' records of duty status (RODS).

Last Updated : March 28, 2017

No. An ELD automatically records all of the time that a CMV is in motion as driving time that cannot be edited or changed to non-driving time.

Last Updated : March 28, 2017

All of the driver's hours of service must be accounted for when subject to the HOS rules. Prior to operating a commercial motor vehicle equipped with an ELD, the driver can manually add any on-duty not driving time accrued prior to.

Last Updated : July 12, 2017

Yes. Drivers may edit their RODS using ELD back office support systems. While these edits or corrections are allowed to ensure an accurate record of the driver's duty status, the electronic record must retain what was originally recorded, as well as the date, time, and identity of the individual entering the corrections or edits.

Last Updated : March 28, 2017

If multiple, compatible ELDs are used to record a driver's RODS within a motor carrier's operation, the ELD in the vehicle the driver is operating must be able to produce a complete ELD report for that driver, on demand, for the current 24-hour period and the previous 7 consecutive days.

Last Updated : March 28, 2017

The motor carrier and the driver are responsible for ensuring that all of the RODS information required by the HOS rules is available for review by authorized safety officials at the roadside. If the driver uses multiple ELDs that are not compatible (e.g., the data file from one system cannot be uploaded into the other system), the driver must either manually enter the missing duty status information or provide a printout from the other system(s) so that an accurate accounting of the duty status for the current and previous seven days is available for the authorized safety official.

Last Updated : March 28, 2017

For a reset or replaced ELD, the ELD rule requires data or documents showing the driver's records of duty status (RODS) history in the vehicle. This data would include the driver's past 7 days of RODS, either loaded into the "new" ELD or in paper format to be provided at roadside.

Last Updated : March 28, 2017

For team drivers, the driver account associated with the driving time records may be edited and reassigned between the team drivers, if there was a mistake resulting in a mismatch between the actual driver and the driver recorded by the ELD, and if both team drivers were indicated in one another's records as a co-driver. Each co-driver must confirm the change for the corrective action to take effect.

Last Updated : April 03, 2017

A driver must review any unassigned driving time when he or she logs into the ELD. If the unassigned records do not belong to the driver, the driver must indicate that in the ELD record. If driving time logged under this unassigned account belongs to the driver, the driver must add that driving time to his or her own record.

Last Updated : April 03, 2017

A motor carrier must either explain why the time is unassigned or assign the time to the appropriate driver. The motor carrier must retain unidentified driving records for at least six months as a part of its hours-of-service (HOS) ELD records and make them available to authorized safety officials.

Last Updated : April 03, 2017

Yes, a driver can be assigned unidentified driver records recorded under the Unidentified Driver profile and indicate a special driving category. However, an ELD must not allow automatically recorded driving time for a driver to be shortened or altered in any way.

Last Updated : December 19, 2018

Yes, a driver can edit their record after erroneously accepting a driving event that was originally recorded under the Unidentified Driver profile. The ELD must prompt the driver to annotate edits. In addition, the carrier can suggest the edit which can be routed to the driver for confirmation.

Last Updated : December 19, 2018

The driver must identify the driving time as personal conveyance on the device.

Last Updated : April 03, 2017

The ELD rule has provisions to prevent the use of ELDs to harass drivers. FMCSA explicitly prohibits a motor carrier from harassing a driver, and provides that a driver may file a written complaint under 49 CFR 386.12(b) if the driver was subject to harassment. Technical provisions that address harassment include a mute function to ensure that a driver is not interrupted in the sleeper berth. Furthermore, the design of the ELD allows only limited edits of an ELD record by both the driver and the motor carrier's agents, and in either case, the original ELD record cannot be changed. As a result, motor carriers will be limited in forcing drivers to violate the hours-of-service (HOS) rules without leaving an electronic trail that would point to the original and revised records. The driver certification is also intended, in part, to protect drivers from unilateral changes—a factor that drivers identified as contributing to harassment. Harassment will be considered in cases of alleged HOS violations; therefore, the penalty for harassment is in addition to the underlying violation under 49 CFR 392.3 or part 395. An underlying HOS violation must be found for a harassment penalty to be assessed.

Last Updated : April 03, 2017

The ELD must set the “Event Record Origin” of the ELD record to “2” (edited or entered by the driver).

Last Updated : November 07, 2019

Yes, but only if the driving time was recorded by the ELD while the vehicle was powered off and the vehicle was not in motion during the period that is being edited or corrected. The driver edit limitation found in section 4.3.2.8.2(b) prohibits the editing of automatically recorded driving time. The intent of the specification that requires automatic recording of driving time is to ensure all movement of the CMV is captured.  A CMV cannot be driven while powered off.  The driving time following the power off cycle of a CMV not in motion, is not recorded to the specifications required by 4.3.1.2 and 4.4.1.1 and therefore may be edited to the correct duty status.

Last Updated : November 07, 2019