FMCSA - Federal Motor Carrier Safety Adminstration

Drivers and Motor Carries

Am I Subject to the ELD Rule?

The ELD Rule applies to most motor carriers and drivers who are required to maintain records of duty status (RODS). The rule applies to commercial buses as well as trucks. Canada-and Mexico-domiciled drivers are included, unless they qualify for one of the exceptions to the ELD rule.

ELD Exemptions

Research and Select Your ELD

Make sure that the specific ELD model you are considering is on FMCSA’s list of registered, self-certified ELDs. Motor carriers using a device not on this list could be cited for violation of the ELD rule.

View List of ELDs

Understand Your ELD

Before you or your fleet start operating with ELDs, make sure everyone can use the device you’ve selected to record, edit, certify, and transfer driver logs.

Download Checklist

Transfer Logs Upon Request

Compliant ELDs can electronically transfer HOS data files to safety officials upon request. Below is a quick guide on how to transfer your data, see your ELD user manual for more details.

Download Guide

Why ELDs?

Improving Efficiency

Drivers spend less time on paperwork and more time doing what they do best—driving.

Safer Operations

The ELD rule protects drivers from harassment and coercion by ensuring they get the rest they need to drive safely.

Read more about ELDs, how they can save you time and money, and how they are making roads safer.

Download PDF

Need more time to repair, replace, or service your ELD?

Motor carriers have 7 days to remedy an issue with their ELD, per the ELD rule. If you need more time, click “Request an Extension” to send an official request to FMCSA.

ELDs and AOBRDs

Automatic On-Board Recording Devices (AOBRDs) are a precursor to ELDs, and many are still in-use. It is important for motor carriers and drivers to understand the difference between these types of devices and accurately report to safety officials which type of device they are using in order to expedite the HOS review process.

If you are using an AOBRD that does not meet the requirements of the grandfather clause, you may be cited for failure to record a record of duty status.

If you are using a grandfathered AOBRD, be sure to tell the safety official this so he or she knows not to request data transfer via telematics or local transfer. This will make your inspection or investigation go much more smoothly.

If you have a registered ELD that supports an AOBRD mode, you may use your device in AOBRD mode if you have AOBRDs in your fleet that were purchased and in-use prior to December 18, 2017. After December 16, 2019, all devices must operate in ELD mode.

AOBRD use is permitted for devices that were purchased and in-use prior to December 18, 2017. These “grandfathered” AOBRDs can be used until December 16, 2019, after which only compliant ELDs are permitted. Grandfathered AOBRDs replaced by a manufacturer’s warranty are also permitted until December 16, 2019.

While AOBRDs also synchronize with the CMV engine to record data, the main difference is that AOBRDs cannot support the electronic data transfer methods outlined in the ELD rule—telematics (web services and email) and local transfer (Bluetooth and USB). The ELD rule compares the technical specifications of AOBRDs and ELDs.

Quick Tips: Choosing a Compliant ELD

  • Do your vehicles operate in remote areas?

    Some ELDs rely on cellular connectivity to relay information to the smartphone or tablet. This is true of many portable or “BYOD” devices. If you regularly operate in areas with limited cellular connectivity, consider purchasing a device that does not rely on a cellular network to produce current RODS.

  • >How many vehicles do you manage?

    Whether you have one or 100 vehicles, ELD providers offer a wide range of options that can address your needs. Some devices operate as stand-alone units, some have the capability to connect to a system where you can monitor and supervise a large fleet of vehicles. If you have one or two vehicles, you could consider purchasing a stand-alone unit—just be sure it supports all the minimum requirements in the ELD rule. For guidance on choosing a compliant ELD, see FMCSA’s ELD Checklist for Carriers.

  • Are you running your device’s most up-to-date software?

    ELD providers that discover bugs or other issues in their devices can often resolve these by fixing the issue in the software and pushing out a software update to their users. To be sure your ELD’s software is working as needed, be sure to download and install any software updates as soon as possible after being prompted by the device or notified by your ELD provider.

More Resources for Motor Carriers

To help motor carriers comply with the ELD rule, FMCSA has created an online resource with checklists, FAQs, brochures, fact sheets, and more.