Regulations have required ELDs to be standard in every truck for a few years now. This new technology takes some getting used to; especially for veteran drivers who used manual logging tools for decades. Fortunately, the transition is easier than you think, and the technology will actually make your drives easier once your understand how the truck’s ELD works. Here are some quick tips to refer to when your ELD is causing problems.
Learn the rules
Every fleet company should go over the ELD rules and regulations before a driver’s first haul with the company. The last thing you want to do is violate a serious regulation. These rules should be provided in the ELD documentation if you ever need to refresh your memory.
Consult the instruction manual
The ELD mandate requires drivers to carry the transfer guide, ELD manual and malfunction guide. These documents can be incredibly helpful for solving your problems. In fact, there is probably a section for your specific issue. If you cannot find the solution to your problems in these handbooks, or the issue cannot be resoled by the steps listed, then it is best to consult with tech support for help.
Keep backup documents
Go back to good ol’ fashioned paper when digital documents fail. Time is of the essence for truck drivers, and you, your company and your destination do not have time for your ELD problems to be resolved. In the mean time, simply track your hours and other processes on paper and input them into the ELD once the problems are resolved.
Like all technology, ELDs are constantly updating and improving to ease the tracking processes fro everyone. Your company should notify you of any changes, but it is a great idea to stay updated yourself. All ELD providers should have social media pages or an email list you can subscribe to in order to stay up to date on any changes.
Communication is always important. Inform your fleet manager if you are having trouble with your ELD. It is essential that your ELD is accurately tracked, as any errors can mess with the entire trip’s data, or even the entire fleet. This will become a huge headache for you, your fleet manager, and back offices. No one wants this headache, so communicate with your colleagues to ensure the ELD is accurately logged.
Do not get discouraged
Technology frustrates even the most tech savvy people, but society still leans on it because it is so rewarding. Frustration will cloud your judgement and only make the problem solving process even more problematic than it already is. If you have a problem, it is quite likely that someone has run into the same thing. Don’t sweat it, the problem will be solved eventually.
Think of the positives of electronic logs
It is easy to think of only the negatives when ELD problems arrive, but always remember the benefits of this technology:
- Zero messes made by cluttered papers
- Logs are tracked to the nearest minute
- No math, that’s always fantastic
- Improved safety
- Easier roadside checks
- Less back office interruptions
Ask for help
With technology, we all need help from time to time. No one should discourage you for reaching out for help, which leads us to the final point.
Just like you did in CDL school, you should keep a notepad to take notes while tech support helps you resolve an ELD issue. If you encounter it once, you will likely encounter it again. Having notes on how to resolve this issues will get your ELD functioning properly and have you on the road faster than a phone call the next time.