Achieve ELD Compliance with a Quality CDL Log Book

Prior to the introduction of the ELD law, commercial motor vehicle operators with a commercial driver’s license (CDL) were permitted to keep records of their duty status on paper logs, documenting changes in their driving status manually over a 24-hour period. However, with the ELD mandate’s full implementation in 2019, CMV drivers were required to transition to electronic logs that provide a higher level of precision as they are directly connected to the vehicle’s engine to accurately record hours of service information.

Although some are exempt from these regulations and can still use paper logs to maintain their records of duty status, most drivers who travel across state lines are subject to this law and require an electronic CDL log book to operate legally. To assist in avoiding penalties and fines associated with non-compliance, this article will explore a reliable elog option and offer useful information on the legislative and technical aspects of CDL driving regulations.

Flexible plans whether you have 1 or 500 vehicles

How Many Hours a Day Can a CDL Driver Drive?

CDL driving rules in the United States limit the time drivers spend operating commercial motor vehicles, working on other tasks, and resting. HOS regulations consist of several primary rules, including the 14-hour rule, the 11-hour rule, the 30-minute rest break rule, and the sleeper berth provision:

  • The 14-hour on-duty rule states that a driver cannot continue operating a commercial motor vehicle after being on duty for 14 consecutive hours, following 10 consecutive hours of off-duty time. Additional off-duty time does not pause or extend the 14-hour period.
  • The 11-hour driving rule is another limit within the 14-hour timeline. It specifies that property drivers can drive for up to 11 hours after having 10 consecutive hours off duty. However, passenger vehicle drivers have a more rigid driving limit of 10 hours after 8 consecutive hours off duty.
  • The 30-minute rest break rule requires CMV drivers to take a break of at least 30 minutes after 8 hours of driving. This rule helps promote driver rest and combat fatigue.
  • The sleeper berth provision allows drivers to split their required off-duty time into two periods. Drivers utilizing the sleeper berth provision must take at least 8 consecutive hours in the sleeper berth, along with a separate off-duty period of at least 2 consecutive hours, either in the sleeper berth or outside of it. The two periods combined must add up to at least 10 hours.

Typically, commercial vehicle drivers subject to HOS regulations are required to use electronic logging devices to accurately record their on- and off-duty hours for roadside inspections. However, drivers may be exempt from this rule under certain circumstances, allowing them to manually record their logbooks, including:

  • If drivers keep RODS for up to eight days during a 30-day period.
  • If the vehicle being driven is the actual commodity (drive-away-tow-away operations).
  • If the vehicle was manufactured before the year 2000.

Short-haul drivers, who operate within a 150-air-mile radius from their work location, are also exempt from the ELD law because they use time cards instead of log books. If none of these exemptions apply to your trucking business, finding a reliable electronic logbook should be a priority. However, this can be challenging as the US market offers over 800 solutions that vary in quality. In the next section, we will introduce a dependable FMCSA-approved ELD that can help facilitate compliance and streamline your fleet operations.

HOS247 ELD devices and app

Enjoy the Benefits of a Quality CDL Log Book with HOS247

HOS247 is a leading ELD provider that meets all applicable HOS requirements. Our solution stands out from other CDL log books for its efficiency, reliability, and excellent customer support, which are the main reasons truckers choose HOS247 ELD. Some of the benefits provided by our solution include:

  • Effective technical support. As user reviews on the Apple App Store and Google Play platforms show, our clients highly appreciate the HOS247 customer support for the efficiency and friendliness of our multilingual tech experts available from Monday to Sunday. In addition, our callback policy guarantees that if the call drops, your rep will contact you right away. 
  • Straightforward interface. Designed to be accessible and easy to use, the app can be paired with both iOS and Android operating systems to run smoothly on any phone or tablet. With the HOS247 app, drivers can easily update their driving status and create vehicle inspection reports, while fleet managers can access valuable metrics collected by the device through the web-based portal.
  • Compatible hardware. If you own vehicles of different classes, you need a device that is compatible with all of them. The HOS247 hardware is compatible with most vehicles, and can be set up in minutes without requiring special installation.
  • No-contract policy. With a flexible system of monthly or yearly subscriptions that can be easily upgraded or downgraded, our customers don’t have to worry about being locked into long-term contracts. Our clients stay because of the quality of our service; they do not have to commit for years in advance. 
  • Two-week trial. At HOS247, we encourage our customers to test our solution for 14 days before making a decision, so they can put the system to the test and decide if it suits their business needs.
  • Extra features. The HOS247 ELD can be integrated with real-time GPS tracking, IFTA mileage, idle reporting, and vehicle diagnostics, allowing truckers to reduce operational costs and significantly boost the productivity of operations. 

Improve Trucking Operations the HOS247 All-in-One Vehicle Fleet Management Solution 

In addition to providing a reliable ELD solution to enhance your compliance efforts, HOS247 offers a comprehensive suite of all-in-one vehicle fleet management solutions. Our goal is to streamline your operations and foster a culture of safety within your fleet.

With HOS247, you can leverage advanced technology to gain real-time insights into your fleet’s performance, optimize routes, monitor driver behavior, and simplify compliance with industry regulations. Let’s explore the features that enable these capabilities:

  • Real-time GPS tracking. This tool enhances vehicle and driver security, facilitates dispatch, improves customer service, and provides full fleet visibility. With GPS trackers that can be concealed inside the vehicle, motor carriers can also secure their assets and prevent vehicles from being utilized for unauthorized purposes.
  • Vehicle maintenance. When maintenance is done on time, it can significantly cut repair expenses, extending vehicles’ lives. This feature tracks and schedules maintenance events based on mileage and hours of usage, keeping a record of past service history and malfunctions reported by drivers.
  • Fault code detection. If the system finds a malfunction, it generates a specific trouble code corresponding to a fault detected in the vehicle and notifies the fleet manager. This tool also contributes to enhancing vehicles’ longevity to maximize carriers’ investments.
  • IFTA mileage calculations. Automated IFTA mileage calculations eliminate audit risk and human error by tracking the distance traveled by a vehicle in each IFTA jurisdiction, making tax reporting easier.
  • Idle reporting. Besides being harmful to the environment, idling may result in additional fuel expenses due to wastage. This feature helps fleet managers monitor and correct drivers’ behavioral patterns, reducing fuel consumption and cutting fuel costs.

HOS247 ELD connection scheme

Add options as you grow when you need them

How to Fill Out the Truck Drivers Log Book

There can be many circumstances where a commercial vehicle driver may need to fill in a logbook using paper logs. We’ve already discussed HOS exemptions allowing operators to fill their records manually. Device malfunctioning is another common reason drivers have to use analog logbooks. Completing the form is not complex but requires a lot of precision and attention to detail to stay in line with CDL logbook rules. Let’s take a closer look at the process. 

The contents of a logbook include: 

  • The date
  • Name of carrier
  • Truck number
  • The total number of miles driven within a 24-hour period
  • The starting time of the 24-hour period
  • The names of all co-drivers
  • The shipping document that specifies the carrier and commodity being transported.

If the operator drives several vehicles of the fleet, this information should also be reflected in the logbook.  The operator should state the origination point in the “from” line and write the destination in the “to” line.

Tracking Activities on the Graph Grid

Commercial big rig gray industrial long haul semi truck

The graph grid of a logbook is a crucial tool for tracking a driver’s activities during their working shift. It is divided into 24 boxes, with each box representing one hour of the day and marked with fifteen-minute intervals.

The grid has four sections that indicate the driver’s activities: off-duty, sleeping, driving, or on-duty and not driving. To record their duties, the operator must draw a straight horizontal line through the relevant activity, indicating the start and end time.

When the duty changes, drivers should indicate this by drawing a vertical line from the first mark of the previous duty to the next one. After each duty, truckers should leave comments in the remarks section, specifying information about the location, and the more precise the information is, the better. Once the CDL log book is completed, drivers must count the number of hours worked and double-check to ensure it equals 24. They should also correct any mathematical and grammatical errors and ensure that the recorded information is legible.

CDL driving regulations are extensive and can be challenging to adhere to. However, a dependable electronic logbook can go a long way in facilitating administrative tasks for both drivers and managers. HOS247’s reliable and user-friendly devices, combined with our comprehensive fleet management solutions, provide a seamless experience for managing your logs and maximizing operational efficiency. Order a demo today and try our devices for two weeks to see how easy keeping a CDL log book can be.

"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.”

Ilya Kulagin
Manuel Jenez
Free hardware options, no monthly fee options
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