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Vehicle fleets brace for electronic logging device mandate

Thursday, August 17, 2017 - 06:00
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With a December deadline looming for commercial truck operators to install electronic logging devices (ELDs) for tracking hours of service (HOS) data, a number of fleet and telematics solution providers are offering new systems to help fleets stay compliant.

Earlier this year, Samsung and Magellan announced a partnership to offer a solution on Samsung’s Galaxy E and Galaxy A tablets, as well as some Galaxy S7 smartphone models. SYNNEX will distribute the systems, which will offer Magellan’s FMSCA-certified HOS logging tools, as well as dispatch and web portal features to create HOS and fuel tax reports. The system also will include Magellan Fleet Navigation. The hardware also can be used as a personal device for drivers.

The initial compliance data for the mandate, which is administered by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), is Dec. 18, 2017.

“The impending instatement of the U.S. electronic logging device (ELD) mandate has many smaller commercial vehicle fleets and owner-operator businesses seeking advice from trusted brands on pricing and features that will address security and flexibility compliance concerns with their businesses,” said Susan Beardslee, senior analyst at ABI Research. “Magellan’s partnership with Samsung Electronics America – and their plans to develop commercial-grade truck navigation and ELD-compliant hours of service (HOS) tracking solutions – is indicative of the many opportunities that still exist for both new entrants and long-established players in this still-fragmented fleet management market.”

ABI expects fleet management system revenues to exceed $22 billion by 2021, and predicts that global commercial telematics subscribers will reach 59 million that same year.

The ELD mandate was passed into law in 2015 with bi-partisan support to improve tracking and enforcement of HOS compliance. By eliminating paper driver logs, it will be easier for inspectors to identify violations, reduce fraud and tampering, and potentially improve driver safety.

The mandate also is expected to reduce the amount of supporting documents and paperwork drivers need to maintain. The rule includes a prohibition on driver harassment related to data generated by ELDs. This is to deter fleet operators or shippers that might attempt to coerce drivers into violating HOS limits.

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