When Canada’s electronic device (ELD) mandate takes effect, it will reflect a long development process that will take lessons from its southern neighbor.
“Canada, consciously, is not simply duplicating the U.S. regulation,” said Marc Moncion, head of safety, compliance and regulatory affairs at FleetComplete, during the ExpoCam trucking show in Montreal on April 11.
The Canadian government plans to implement its ELD mandate as soon as 2020. In June, it will release its final regulations in the Canadian Gazette.
Moncion predicted that the biggest change will include a requirement for ELD devices to go through the third-party certification process – something sought by industry groups.
“The U.S. moved more aggressively in the mandate, but self-certification is the fox in the hen house,” Moncion said.
ELD manufacturers certify their own devices in the United States. The result, Moncion said, is a market flooded with questionable ELDs that have a stronger potential to be tampered with.
Moncion is an old hand in the Canadian trucking industry. He also spent 17 years at Ontario’s Ministry of Transportation – including time as an enforcement officer and facility auditor – before entering the private sector.
Having a higher standard for ELDs will ultimately benefit drivers and fleets, he said.
“If an inspector pulls you over, and something’s wrong with your ELD’s hours of service log, you could be cited and/or placed out of service,” he said.
The ELD mandate will be less of a shock to the industry in Canada. Cross-border carriers have already had to use the devices since the U.S. rule took effect in 2017.
Moncion speculated that Canada may face pressure to change its strict rules of personal conveyance – which would be harder to get around with ELDS.
Off-duty, unladen drivers are allowed to travel about 75 kilometers (47 miles) per day under current rules before being considered on-duty. Drivers don’t have a distance restriction in the U.S.