Omnitracs reported that 99.9% of its electronic logging devices (ELDs) affected by a four-day connectivity issue are working again, meaning truck drivers can stop manually tracking their movements.
“We are here to assist the exceptional few customers who have not received the updated configuration file with getting this accomplished over the next couple of days,” Omnitracs CEO Ray Greer said in a Nov. 6 update to a blog initially posted Nov. 3 on the company website.
Omnitracs planned to push an additional update to double the frequency of communication with back offices “which we believe will return performance to pre-event status,” Greer said.
On Saturday, Nov. 2, Omnitracs experienced a “GPS rollover event” that knocked out accurate time and location data on trucks equipped with MCP model 50, 110, and 200 telematics units. Backend systems and bi-directional communications with the devices functioned normally.
Drivers were told to use paper logs to record compliance with hours-of-service regulations. Paper logs were eliminated nearly two years ago when the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) began requiring digital hours-of-service monitoring.
Seven updates followed the first company communication about the problem.
“The CEO’s blog appears to be a sincere effort to explain to customers and other stakeholders the status of the outage and what the company is doing to fix the problem,” said Andy Gilman, president and CEO of Washington, D.C.-based CommCore Consulting Group. “It’s an example of the buck stops here philosophy.”
Gilman, who has worked with scores of companies on corporate and product crises, said the frequent updates with Greer as the spokesperson allowed Omnitracs to control much of the narrative while the problem was being addressed.
Omnitracs declined to say how many ELDs were affected by the connectivity issue. Roughly one-third of fleets use an Omnitracs ELD system, according to surveys conducted in 2018 by Commercial Carrier Journal.
“The level of specificity in the blog shows that the company is focused on the issues vs. bland platitudes,” Gilman told FreightWaves. “This goes a long way in convincing customers that the issue is being addressed.”
Greer said Omnitracs is in regular communications with the FMCSA. Technically, the agency could order a truck without a functioning ELD off the road after eight days.