Hours of Service, DOT Inspection Week and You. | Semi Truck Repair
Q: What do you get when you cross International Roadcheck with the CVSA’s shiny new ELD toy mandate?
A: DOT Inspection Week with a focus on Hours of Service of course!
All bad jokes aside, the inspections slated for June 5-7, are creeping up faster than the ivy on the side of my house that took an entire afternoon to rip off last fall. (I’m certain everyone is just as excited about the inspections as I am that ivy. As an aside, anyone with pesticide tips – you need to reach out to a gal. Please.)
Regardless whether you enjoy having your time management skills and your equipment under a microscope or not, it’s happening.
Here’s an interesting fact for ya: 32% of drivers were put out of service (OOS) during last years inspections due to hours of service violations.
It’s clear that not all drivers understand and/or choose to adhere to these regulations. Honestly, after some serious Google research and an explanation from a driver that actually “gets it” (Thanks, Jamie), I’m: 1.) still confused and 2.) seriously convinced only a Calculus Professor would find them simple. Hence, we aren’t going to attempt any reinvention of the wheel here, but rather direct you to a few resources we found helpful at trying to navigate these regulations.
We’re sure you’re probably familiar with the basics but just in case, here’s the Hours of Service Summary from the FMCSA.
The part that we feel causes the most confusion (and most likely causes the majority of the OOS violations) are the split sleeper berth rules. We thought this blog post did a pretty through job of trying to explain them.
Wonder how our boys in blue are going to get the info from your fancy new ELDS? We reached out to our friend Brandon at the Ohio State Highway Patrol and here’s what he had to say:
“ELDs have the option of different methods they must use to transmit data to inspectors electronically. This can be done using the local options, Bluetooth and USB devices. They can also use the telematics option, email or (most commonly) web services. The web services option requires the driver to input a unique identifier code provided by the inspector into the ELD to transmit their logs into a secure FMCSA server. The inspector can then pull up the logs from their in car computer using a program called eRODs and review them. If the logs cannot be uploaded due to malfunctions, connectivity issues, etc. the inspector can review the logs on the ELD screen or via a printout.
If a driver makes an error on an entry into the ELD for on duty (not driving) hours, such as forgetting to log off duty at the end of their shift, the driver or the carrier (with driver approval) may make edits to the hours to accurately reflect their activity along with annotations explaining why the edit is made. If the driver is unsure how the edits can be made on their device, I recommend they contact their carrier or ELD manufacturer for guidance. “
With that part out of the way, here’s what we can help you with.
Last year, nearly 70% of the 60,013 inspections were Level 1 inspections.
The likelihood of your equipment being inspected down to each and every last 32nd is pretty high. Fortunately for you, we know what they’re going to look at, and a thorough PM by your maintenance team or your tire and service vendor (Shameless anchor text plug :)), can help mitigate these violations before they even pull your driver over. So, without further ado…..