The new Hours of Service rules are upon us, and leading up to their implementation, STC has been fielding many questions about how they can be used. Given our previous predictions about the impact of the new rules on the industry’s short-haul segment, we thought we’d share the answers to a few of them.

  1. Can I stop using ELDs now that more of my drivers qualify for the short-haul exception and are unlikely to violate the exception more than 8 times in a 30 day period?

The easy answer here is yes. When using the short-haul exception, ELDs are not required. However, ELDs can provide a lot of benefits beyond just logging hours, including asset tracking, safety monitoring, vehicle diagnostics, and driver communication, among many others.  As consultants, it’s our job to lead you to water. Whether you drink is not our decision. That said, ELD water tastes great, is refreshing, and easy to find.

  1. If we decide to use ELDs for our short-haul drivers, must their ELD records meet the same standards as a driver required to use ELDs?

The rules say that drivers using this exception are not required to record logs and must only verify on-duty time with a timecard-esque system. This has the benefits of simplification and avoids the unintended driver error. Many ELDs have a short-haul mode, which produces simplified records but will move to a standard record of duty status should the driver no longer be eligible for the exception. Some can even track the number of days a driver violates the exception in a 30 day period to ensure an ELD is not required.