ELD suppliers say their devices will be ready

Several ELD suppliers have issued announcements to assure Canada’s trucking industry that they will have devices ready to comply with a federal mandate scheduled to take effect June 12.

All federally regulated carriers will have to use electronic logging devices certified by a recognized third party, proving the equipment meets underlying technical standards.

While FPInnovations can conduct the required testing, it has yet to certify any equipment. That has led the Private Motor Truck Council of Canada (PMTC) to lead a call for deferred enforcement.

Omnitracs ELD
(Photo: Omnitracs)

Many suppliers plan to update their existing offerings through over-the-air software changes.

“We will be applying for third-party certification on devices we intend to make compliant, along with providing training and preparation materials to the industry. Rest assured, we will obtain certification and help you ensure you’re ready by the mandate deadline,” Omnitracs said in a recent statement.

“Our past success in the on-time transitioning of over 600,000 drivers to be compliant with the U.S. ELD mandate is a testament to our ability to deliver and succeed,” added CEO Ray Greer.

“Updated technical standards to the Canadian ELD mandate were published in October 2020, and in that time, only one certification body has been approved by Transport Canada. However, Zonar is ready and will be certified by the effective date of June 12,” says Fred Fakkema, Zonar’s vice-president – safety and compliance.

Other concerns

Still, Fakkema says there are concerns to be addressed.

“It is our understanding that law enforcement has not been trained on how to conduct and receive ELD logs during a roadside inspection, which may impact our customers,” he says. “As we’ve seen with the U.S. mandate, this can cause confusion and additional downtime during inspections. We hope to see the further training happen prior to the mandate going into effect.”

Vishal Sharma, head of sales and marketing at B.C.-based Hutch Systems, says several bring-your-own-device ELD suppliers will struggle to certify their equipment to meet the Transport Canada guidelines.

Many apps available in the U.S. are developed by smaller companies that need to balance the certification costs with the market opportunities. Suppliers self-certify their own devices as meeting the American ELD technical standards.

“We have already submitted our application to FPInnovations and feel strongly about getting a certification way before the mandate comes in place,” he stresses.

Isaac Instruments president Jacques DeLarochelliere says all of his company’s earlier questions about the technical standards have been answered.

“All our products are going to be certified and they’re going to be certified on time,” he says. “We’re confident with the process. We’re satisfied with the answers. It’s a serious process. It’s well done.”

He’s also critical of any suppliers who are only now asking questions about the mandate’s technical requirements with just months to go until June 12.

“I see a lot of finger pointing,” he says. “The process was there. The rule was there.”

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