Electronic Logging Devices – What you need to know

On June 12, 2019, Transport Canada published amendments (changes) to the Commercial Vehicle Drivers Hours of Service Regulations in the Canada Gazette, Part II (the Regulations).

Currently, motor carriers and drivers currently maintain a daily log. Soon these logs will be replaced with electronic logging devices (ELDs) that have been tested and certified by an accredited certification body.

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What is an electronic logging device?

An ELD connects to the electronic control module of a vehicle. They make it easier and faster to track, manage, share and improve the accuracy of a driver's hours of service record. This helps drivers stay within legally allowed driving hours, and reduce fatigue.

ELDs will:

  • help reduce:
    • fatigue related crashes, injuries and deaths
    • out-of-service detention time of drivers who violate the regulations
    • administrative costs for industry
    • enforcement costs for the provinces and territories.
  • make competition fairer for federally-regulated motor carriers
  • work better with regulatory requirements in the US
  • make it easier for drivers and motor carriers to comply with the regulations
  • improve drivers' quality of life

What's changing?

The Technical Standard for Electronic Logging Devices (the Standard) has been incorporated by reference, as amended from time to time, into the Commercial Vehicle Drivers Hours of Service Regulations. This means that the Technical Standard has been added to the Regulations. The Standard establishes minimum performance and design specifications for ELDs and is closely aligned with the technical specifications set out in the U.S. ELD Final Rule, with variations only to the extent necessary to address the differences between the two regulations.

Commercial motor vehicle drivers will still need to enter some of the information from their record of duty status (like on-duty time related to fueling, loading or unloading), the ELD will automatically record other information like driving time, odometer readings, and engine power-up.

Motor carriers and drivers will need to use ELDs that have been tested and certified by an accredited certification body that has followed the criteria set in the most recent version of the Standard and the Regulations.

The Standard is undergoing a small update by February 29, 2020.

When do the changes come into effect?

There will be a 24-month implementation period. During this time, companies that make or supply devices should prepare their devices and software to meet the new requirements. After this, they will need to be tested and certified.

Motor carriers will need to choose, buy and install certified devices in their commercial motor vehicles by June 12, 2021.

Please note that some amendments will only come into effect in 2021, once electronic logging devices become mandatory. The amendments that are not yet in force are included at the end of the Regulations.