Comprehensive Guide on Canadian ELD Mandate for Truckers

The Canadian ELD mandate has been talked about at length among truckers and carriers for a couple of years now. More than the facts, it is the confusion and underlying policies that are creating the buzz around the ELD mandate. According to this ELD mandate, commercial vehicle owners and drivers operating in Canada must switch to a registered Electronic logbook within the compliance date pre-decided by Transport Canada. With the demand for genuine suppliers of compliant ELD increasing dramatically more and more carriers are now scrambling for a solution. It is becoming increasingly difficult for truckers to find suppliers in Canada. 

HOS247 is an industry leader providing electronic logbooks in Canada. HOS247 ELDs have been designed with all the advanced features to stay compliant with the mandate issued by Transport Canada. These ELDs come with data edit, on-road driver support, GPS tracking, compliance monitoring, and vehicle diagnostics streamlining options. Moreover, HOS247 offers flexible options to suit both carrier companies and individual owners. They offer a 14-day free trial period without submitting any financial details and the return policy is also hassle-free. This means the drivers can return the ELD if they are dissatisfied with the performance after using it for 14 days. 

Before learning in details about ан ELD provider, let’s take a look at the keys facts of the Canadian ELD mandate

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Canadian ELD mandate overview

ELD mandate was issued by Transport Canada in June 2019 through Gazette II. The Mandate will be enforced by June 2021 which means carriers and truckers need to take immediate action to replace their ELD device with a registered one to stay compliant. 

According to the ELD, every commercial vehicle owner or driver must switch to a registered ELD as no paper log will be accepted after the complaint date. The registered ELD will automatically record data from the driver’s RODS and HOS and store it in a report format that can be immediately accessed by the carrier company or the Transport Canada officers. The report prepared by the device will be a combination of information from the driver’s inputs and the data collected from the vehicle’s engine ECM. As a result, all commercial vehicles must replace the existing paper log or even an e-log with a registered ELD that connects to the engine ECM. 

Transport Canada has enforced the ELD mandate to prevent logbook errors, driver harassment, and tampering of data. The registered e-logbook can also alert the driver and the carrier company in case of overspeeding and illegal cornering. This means it will also improve road safety by minimizing accidents as driver’s behavior can be monitored with the device. 

HOS247 eld connection pic

Compliance Timeline for ELD Mandate in Canada

The first announcement on the ELD mandate was made on December 16, 2017, by the Government of Canada through Canada Gazette Part I. The announcement was a proposal on the amendment of the Commercial Vehicle driver’s HOS regulations. 

The next announcement was made by Transport Canada on June 13, 2019. It was regarding the issuing of the mandate on the use of registered electronic logging devices by commercial vehicle drivers and owners. In this announcement published on Gazette II, Transport Canada also declared the compliance deadline of 2 years from the date of the issue. This means, the compliant deadline ends on June 12, 2021, and from that day onwards, the ELD mandate will be enforced by Transport Canada. Any carrier or driver submitting paper logs or using unregistered ELDs will be penalized under the Transport rules of Canada.

Definition of an Electronic Logging Device or ELD

An ELD is a Transport Canada certified logging device that helps to record Driver’s HOS, RODS, DVIRs automatically. It will sync with the engine ECM of the vehicle soon after installation to collect necessary data regarding the use of the vehicle like Mileage, speed, diagnostics, etc. All these data will be available in the form of a report and can be accessed by carrier companies or Transport Canada officers. 

HOS247 ELD portal

Here are some of the key functions of a registered ELD. 

  • Managing or editing logs: The e-log device will allow the driver to input logging information anytime during duty hours. The information will also be available to the driver to edit or change if necessary. 
  • Managing or editing DVIRs: The driver can edit or create the vehicle inspection report using the electronic logging device. The process is simple. The device will record all the essential data from the vehicle engine’s ECM and the driver can use it to prepare the report or edit it accordingly. 
  • On-road driver support: Often drivers require on-road support during dispatch issues, vehicle breakdown, or transport compliance problems. In such cases, the carrier companies or managers can immediately reach the driver while on-road to offer necessary guidance to resolve the issue. 
  • Compliance reporting and monitoring: As the electronic logging device allows to edit and manage driver logs and compliance reports, the chances of data tampering or input error is much less. This helps to avoid audit risks and expensive violation fees by Transport Canada.  
  • IFTA mileage calculation: A registered ELD can automatically calculate IFTA state mileage by tracking the performance of the engine ECM. This IFTA mileage data will be processed in the form of a report that is compliant with Transport Canada rules. This will further prevent audit issues due to human errors. 
  • Track Vehicle diagnostics: The ELD can also monitor vehicle diagnostics and alert the carrier company and the driver if any fault in the engine or vehicle is detected. There are separate fault detection codes that the device uses to notify the driver as well as the company. This saves a lot of time and human effort to detect a problem in the vehicle and also reduces sudden breakdowns. 
  • Real-time GPS options: Every registered ELD comes with a GPS feature that helps to track the vehicle even if it is not in duty hours. This feature enhances vehicle security by reducing idling time, illegal use of the vehicle for personal jobs, unnecessary use of the vehicle. The GPS will also alert the carrier company if the vehicle is driving in unregistered areas by using Geo-fencing.

Carriers that must comply with the Canadian ELD mandate

Transport Canada has enforced the ELD mandate on all commercial vehicles including trucks and buses. This comes to around 157,500 commercial vehicle drivers operating in Canada. However, the rule strictly applies to those commercial vehicle owners or drivers who are operating under the Federal transport body. 

In Canada, commercial vehicles that operate within the provincial area are controlled by the provincial transport jurisdiction. These vehicles are not required to comply with the Canadian ELD mandate. Provincial commercial vehicles can continue to follow transport rules as issued by the provincial transport jurisdiction. 

Commercial vehicles that operate in extra-provincial areas in Canada like transportation of goods and passengers from one province to another are controlled by the federal government. These federally controlled vehicles are required to follow the ELD mandate rules issued by transport Canada. This means all the vehicles operating under the federal transport jurisdiction must switch to a registered electronic logbook within the compliance date of the Canadian ELD mandate that is June 12, 2021.

Exemptions to Canadian ELD mandate for Truckers and Buses

The ELD mandate issued by Transport Canada does not apply to all the federally controlled commercial vehicle owners and drivers. There are certain exemptions too for this rule as stated by Transport Canada. 

Here are the key exceptions to the Canadian ELD mandate. 

  • Special permit: Any vehicle operating under a special permit from a provincial or a territorial director does not come under the radar of the Canadian ELD mandate. 
  • Statutory Exemption: Some commercial vehicles may operate under a statutory exemption from the provincial or territorial government. These vehicles are not required to comply with the Transport Canada ELD rules. 
  • Brief rental agreement: Commercial vehicles operating under a short-term rental agreement of below 30 days are exempted from following the Transport Canada mandate. 
  • Older model: Vehicles models that were manufactured before the year 2000 are considered an exception to the ELD rules. This is because vehicles of such older models will not be compatible with the highly advanced electronic logbook. 
  • Vehicles driven within 160 km radius: Transport Canada has also relaxed the ELD rules for vehicles operating with a radius of 160 km from the home terminal.

trucks fleet on boarding

Similarities and Differences between ELD mandate in Canada and the United States

Canadian ELD mandate has been modeled on the U.S ELD mandate that has been issued by FMCSA. This will help carriers operating in both countries to stay compliant using a single ELD system that has been approved by both governments. However, there are certain differences in the Canadian ELD mandate that truckers must also know. 

Similarities between Canadian and U.S ELD mandate

The similar factors between the ELD mandates of both countries are listed below. 

  • Auto-detection of driving status: As soon as the vehicle reaches the speed of 8km/ hours, the ELD activates the driving status automatically. 
  • Auto-return to duty status: After a break extends to 5 minutes, a message appears on the ELD asking the driver to change the status to “on duty”. 
  • “Yard mode” feature: While diving in a yard, a vehicle may move slower than 8 km/ hour. The driver must activate the “yard mode” to prevent the status from changing to off duty. 
  • Diagnostic notification: The ELD must automatically track the engine ECM and other vehicle diagnostics and alert the driver in case a fault is detected. 
  • Record unassigned driving time: When an ELD is registered in a vehicle, it shows some unassigned driving time that the driver can accept or reject. 
  • Driver approval for data change: For any change or modification of data, the logbook needs approval from the driver. 
  • No modification to driving status: Though all information recorded by the E-log can be modified by the driver but the driving status remains constant and cannot be changed.
Add options as you grow when you need them

Difference between Canadian and U.S ELD mandate

Here are some major differences between the ELD rules of the two countries. 

  • Certification method: The ELDs in the U.S.A can be self-certified by the manufacturers or providers. However, in Canada, only a third-party agency can certify an ELD. 
  • Personal conveyance: A driver is allowed personal conveyance mileage for traveling from lodging to garage, or garage to a restaurant. This conveyance has no limitation in the U.S mandate, while in Canada, the distance is limited to 75 km or 50 miles approximately. 
  • Data transfer process: In Canada, the recorded logs can be transferred directly to the Transport Canada office via print-out, on-screen display, e-mail, USB, or Bluetooth. In the U.S., the logging data is sent to e-RODs software using USB, Bluetooth, web service, or email. 
  • HOS rules: In the U.S, a driver must take a 30 minutes break after driving continuously for 8 hours whereas, in Canada, the driver has the freedom to complete a job within a 16- hour window. In these 16 hours, the driver is allowed a break of 2 hours, which can be taken in parts or at a stretch. 
  • Omission of Grandfather clause: For the vehicles using ERDs, the U.S mandate allowed a transition phase of 2 years to switch to ELDs. While in Canada, no such grandfather clause is applicable for ERD using vehicles. 

Final Thoughts

The compliance deadline of the ELD mandate in Canada is fast approaching. With the mandatory third-party certification, ELD options for Commercial carriers or drivers in Canada have been reduced further. Right now it’s a smart move for carriers to switch to a registered ELD at the earliest opportunity and to choose a trusted supplier like HOS247 to avoid compliance issues and fines.

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"Awesome. Easy to install and use. Top notch customer service! I recommend it to everyone.”

Abigail Freemantle
Schrader Co
“Great company to deal with. The support team is very responsive and competent. They provided a great deal of education for our company.”
Evgueni Stoupine
GMS Global Group
“Customer service is great. They helped me to set up everything and showed how to edit my logs. Thank you.”

Manuel Jenez
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