An ELD is an electronic program that allows professional truck drivers and commercial motor carriers to easily track Hours of Service (HOS) compliance.
The ELD rule applies to the majority of CMV drivers. This includes unique situations, such as agricultural carrying fleets, vehicles carrying livestock, and oil field drivers. However, the ELD rule doesn’t apply to:
- Pre-2000 vehicles
- Towaway drivers
- Drivers who don’t need to maintain RODS
- Drivers who maintain logs for less than 8 days in a 30-day cycle
Despite the fact that some drivers and vehicles don’t need ELDs, fleets are adopting ELDs because of their various benefits. ELDs are known to reduce operational costs, improve efficiency and profits.
If your fleet falls into any of the four categories mentioned above, you won’t need an ELD.
No Violation Logbook Example
Explanation – 11 Hour Limit: After 10 consecutive hours off duty, the driver had 11 hours of drive time available starting at 1:00 a.m. The driver drove between the hours of 1:00 a.m. and 6:00 a.m. (5 hours), then again between the hours of 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. (3 hours) and finally between the hours of noon to 2:00 p.m. (2 hours). Since the driver was allowed a total of 11 hours of drive time but only drove 10 hours (5 + 3 + 2) so no violation occurred.
Explanation – 30 Minute Break: After taking 10 consecutive hours off duty, the driver went on duty at midnight. At that point, the driver could perform driving duties until 8:00 a.m. before a 30 minute break off duty would be required to continue any driving tasks. After driving for 5 hours (on duty for a total of 6 hours) the driver fulfilled the break requirement by spending 1 hour off duty between the hours of 6:00 a.m. and 7:00 a.m. Starting at 7:00 a.m. the driver was allowed to continue driving for the remainder of his/her available 11 and 14 hour limits.
Explanation – 14 Hour Limit: After 10 consecutive hours off duty, the driver had 14 hours available beginning at Midnight. At 2:00 p.m., the driver had reached the end of the 14-hour window (10 hours driving, 3 hours on duty, and 1 hour off duty). The driver may not drive a CMV once he or she has reached the end of the 14 consecutive-hour period and in this example, the driver goes off duty for the required 10 consecutive hours starting at 2:00 p.m.
No Violation 2 Day Example
Explanation – 11 Hour Limit: After 10 consecutive hours off duty, the driver had 11 available hours of driving and began driving at 11:00 a.m. on Day 1. The driver drove between the hours of 11:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. (5 hours), went off duty for 1 hour, then drove between 5:00 p.m. and 11:00 p.m. (6 hours). No more driving was completed on Day 1 so the driver did not exceed the 11-hour driving limit (5 + 6). Starting at Midnight going into Day 2, the driver may not drive a CMV until he/she goes off duty for a minimum of 10 consecutive hours, which is indicated on the log. On Day 2, the driver only operated a CMV for 3 hours and so no violation occurred.
Explanation – 30 Minute Break: The 1 hour off duty break between 4:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m. on Day 1 fulfilled the 30-minute break requirement. While only 30 minutes off duty is required, taking a break longer than 30 minutes (as in this case) is perfectly legal. The driver may drive a CMV only if 8 hours or less have passed since the end of the driver’s last off duty period of at least 30 minutes. On Day 2, the driver was only on duty for a 3-hour stretch which wouldn’t require the 30-minute break. Both Day 1 and Day 2 of this example are free from any 30-minute break violations.
Explanation – 14 Hour Limit: After taking 10 consecutive hours off duty, the driver changed to on duty status at 10:00 a.m. on Day 1. This is the calculation point for the 14-hour limit so the driver has until Midnight to complete all driving tasks. At midnight, the driver switched to the sleeper berth for 10 consecutive hours. Since the driver performed all driving tasks within 14 hours on Day 1, no violation occurred. No violation occurred on Day 2, either, since the driver was only on duty (driving) for a total of 3 hours.
11 Hour Violation Logbook Example
Explanation – 11 Hour Limit: After 10 hours off duty, the driver had 11 hours of driving time available at 10:00 a.m. on Day 1. At the end of Day 1, the driver had 3 hours remaining and, without a valid 10-hour break, the driver violated the 11-hour limit by driving an additional 1 hour from 6:00 a.m. to 7:00 a.m. on Day 2. After taking 10 consecutive hours off duty from 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., the 11-hour limit reset and the new calculation point became 5:00 p.m. with a full 11 hours available.
Explanation – 30 Minute Break: On Day 1, the driver began driving at 10:00 a.m. which is the calculation point for the 30-minute break provision. The driver could only drive until 6:00 p.m. which is 8 hours since the last off duty period of at least 30 minutes. The break taken from 3:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. fulfilled the break requirement. On Day 2, the longest duration the driver was on duty for was 6 hours which is below the 8-hour threshold requiring a break.
Explanation – 14 Hour Limit: Calculation of the 14-hour limit begins at 10:00 a.m. on Day 1. The driver used 9 of 14 hours on Day 1 so 5 hours still remain on the 14-hour limit. The driver then spent 8 consecutive hours in the sleeper berth and that rest break is not included in the 14-hour calculation. So at 3:00 a.m. on Day 2, the driver still had 5 hours remaining on his/her 14-hour limit. After spending 4 hours on duty (driving), the driver then switched to off duty for 10 consecutive hours. That 10 consecutive hour break reset the 14-hour limit and the new calculation point was then 5:00 p.m.
14 Hour Violation Logbook Example
Explanation – 11 Hour Limit: After 10 consecutive hours off duty, the driver was eligible to drive for up to 11 hours beginning at 2:00 a.m. The driver drove for just 1 hour between 9:00 p.m. and 10:00 p.m., far below the 11-hour driving limit.
Explanation – 30 Minute Break: The driver never drove a CMV after being on duty for more than 8 hours. Therefore, no violation has occurred.
Explanation – 14 Hour Limit: After 10 consecutive hours off duty, the driver had 14 hours available beginning at 2:00 a.m. Because the 14-hour calculation includes all off duty time of less than 10 consecutive hours, all of this driver’s time between 2:00 a.m. and 10:00 p.m. is included in the calculation. Even though the driver spent 9 consecutive hours off duty, the 14-hour limit does not get extended. In order for an 8 consecutive hour (or longer) break to extend the 14-hour limit, the 8 consecutive hours must occur in the sleeper berth. However, the driver could have spent 10 hours off duty and both the 11 and 14 hour limits would have reset. The driver reached the 14-hour limit at 4:00 p.m. and violated the 14-hour rule at 9:00 p.m. by driving a CMV beyond the 14-hour duty limit.
NOTE: Even though this driver had 10 hours off duty during the day and only drove for 1 hour, that hour of driving was done in violation of the 14-hour rule. The driver did not obtain another 10 consecutive hours off duty, so the calculation point does not change and the 9-hour break must be included in the calculation of the 14-hour limit. After 10:00 p.m., the driver must be off duty for at least 10 consecutive hours, or in a sleeper berth for at least 8 consecutive hours, before driving again.
To remain in compliance: The driver should not have driven after 4:00 p.m., which was the end of the 14-hour limit. If he or she had gone into a sleeper berth for the 9-hour break, that break would have been excluded from the 14-hour calculation and the driver would have remained in compliance. Furthermore, the driver could have elected to remain off duty until 10:00 p.m. for a total of 10 hours off duty which would have reset both the 11 hour and 14 hour limits.
Listed below are some important facts you should confirm before you choose a bus company to transport you or members of your group.
- Safety Performance History
– Check the bus company’s safety performance results.
- Safety Rating
– Bus companies with a restricted safety rating may pose a higher risk, and companies with a final unsatisfactory safety rating should not be in business.
- Operating Authority and Insurance Requirements
– If the company operates a bus that is intended to transport 16 plus passengers, it must have a minimum of $5 million in insurance coverage.
CMV Tire Safety Tips
Examine your tires Every Day for:
- Irregular treadwear
- Inadequate tread depth
- Foreign objects
- Other Damage
- Gauge your tires cold before each trip
- Adjust as necessary
Improper inflation pressure affects tire wear and fuel efficiency.
Only use approved tire/rim combinations of the appropriate width and diameter.
Incompatible tire and rim parts may explode and cause serious injury or death.
Overloading or underinflation causes unnecessary heat build-up and internal structural damage that can lead to a tire failure.
DO NOT exceed your tires’ speed rating – Doing so will damage your tires and lead to untimely failure.
Have any questions or concerns? Don’t Stress! DOT Operating Authority is here to help! Give us a call at 888-233-0899.
No Texting Rule
Texting while driving has many negative end results. One being that it can result in driver disqualification. Also, penalties can go up to $2,750 for drivers and up to $11,000 for employers who allow or mandate drivers to use a hand-held communications device for texting while driving.
If multiple conviction for texting and driving are filed while operating a CMV, it can result in a disqualification by the FMCSA. Numerous violations of State law prohibiting texting while driving a CMV that requires a CDL is a serious traffic violation that could result in a CDL driver being disqualified for up to 120 days.
Texting is a risk because it causes the driver to take his/her eyes off the road. Dispatching devices that are part of a fleet management system can be used for other purposes, but texting on a dispatching device is indistinguishable from texting on another text-capable device, and is therefore strictly not allowed.
CMV Safety Belt Program
One of the cheapest, easiest, and most important ways to protect a driver of a commercial motor vehicle is the use of a safety belt. Safety belts are also important because they help protect against serious damage and injury to yourself and others on the road. This is because a driver who is buckled in is more likely to be able to better control their vehicle in an emergency situation. 84 percent of commercial motor vehicle drivers now use safety belts, thanks to understanding the dangers of driving without one. The CMV Safety Belt Partnership can be given most of that thanks because of the great role they played in awareness. The partnership continues to sponsor outreach and educational initiatives to break down dangerous myths about safety belt use and more importantly to encourage use by all drivers.
In order to keep our roads safe and be fit enough to handle the many demanding duties of a CMV driver, you must complete a physical examination which deems you healthy.
A Department of Transportation (DOT) physical examination must be conducted by a licensed “medical examiner” listed on the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) National Registry. This includes, but is not limited to, doctors of medicine (MD), doctors of osteopathy (DO), physician assistants (PA), advanced practice nurses (APN), and doctors of chiropractic (DC).
To find a medical examiner who is certified by the FMCSA to perform DOT physical exams, click on this link: https://nationalregistry.fmcsa.dot.gov/NRPublicUI/Drivers.seam
A DOT physical exam is valid for up to 24 months. The medical examiner may also issue a medical examiner’s certificate for less than 24 months when it is necessary to monitor a condition, such as high blood pressure.
Call us if you have any questions. Our agents await your call 1-888-669-4383.
Over 1,300 cargo tank rollovers are reported annually, which on average is nearly 4 rollovers every day. Contrary to belief, truck rollovers CAN be prevented. Most drivers might believe that rollovers happen only in bad driving conditions or at night. They believe this without realizing that 2/3 of rollovers occur during the day with more than half occurring on dry, straight roads. Even though most people believe that excessive speed plays the greatest roles, it isn’t the highest contributing factor to rollover accidents. Actually, only 28% of all cargo tank accidents involve driving too fast for conditions, and evasive maneuvers account for only 5-10% of rollovers. Even experienced drivers get involved in rollovers, with 66% of accidents involving drivers with more than 10 years of experience. Rollovers can happen to any driver, any time.
Drivers can play a big role in preventing rollovers. Studies show that the main causes of rollovers are by behaviors such as drowsiness, inattention, or incorrect turning. Another factor in crashes is load size, with 63% of rollovers happening with cargo tanks carrying partial loads. The condition of your vehicle also plays a role. One study showed that 54% of vehicles in rollovers had some type of brake defect.
While being attentive while driving is the best way to prevent a rollover, here are some beneficial tips for next time you get on the road:
- Always Be Alert – Drivers can never be too comfortable behind the wheel. Always remain alert, and never drive when you are sleepy.
- Know Your Load– Look out for the “slosh and surge” effect of cargo tanks, and how quickly your load shifts can play a part in accidents.
- Check Your Vehicle– Make sure brakes and tires work properly and are safe for the road.
Safety Tips for Pedestrians
Being a pedestrian may put you at a disadvantage at times. These times are more relevant when crossing streets, intersections, and standing on corners. The danger lays in the fact that you may not always be visible to drivers, particularly those who are behind the wheel of a large truck or bus. This is why being cautious at all times is important. Below are some safety tips that can ensure your safety as a pedestrian.
Watch Your Walkways
Walk on sidewalks and in crosswalks whenever possible. Pay close attention to walk signals and keep a safe cushion space when standing on corners of street. Always keep in mind that trucks and buses make wider right turns, which may cause them to driver over the corner of the side wide. This is why it is best advised to be alert and stand back.
Be Aware of the No-Zone (Blind Spots)
Trucks and buses are more vulnerable to blind spots then other smaller vehicles. This is why it is important to be aware of their blind or no zones. While a truck is backing up DO NOT walk behind it, truck drivers are unable to see directly behind them, which ultimately puts you at risk.
While crossing intersections and streets, driver may not be able to see you or may not have enough time to stop. It is important to remember, trucks, cars, motorcycles and bicycles all have different stopping capabilities. Typically, trucks need a more sizable amount of space to stop than other smaller vehicles.
Make Yourself Visible
It is important to wear bright or reflective clothing in order to be easily seen by drivers, especially when walking in the dark.
Watch for Wide Loads
Trucks with wide loads have very restricted visibility and trouble maneuvering. Wide loads are often heavier and need more space on the road. Be careful when walking near a truck with a wide load because it is possible that the driver may not see you. Trucks with wide loads are expected to make even wider right turns, require more space, and take even longer come to a halt than other trucks on the road. Remember to keep your distance when walking around these large trucks