Canada Enforces ELD Law for US and Canadian Carriers
Canada’s long-awaited ELD regulations will be enforced beginning Jan. 1, 2023. Is your fleet ready?
Rules requiring electronic logging devices in Canada officially came into effect June 12 of this year, but most provinces and territories were not prepared to begin enforcement at that time. Instead, they implemented a period of “education and awareness” that saw roadside inspectors advising drivers on the need to comply as of Jan. 1, 2023.
That hard-enforcement deadline is now right around the corner. As of the first of the year, fleets operating in Canada must have installed and activated one of the Transport Canada-approved devices, even if the fleet is based in the U.S.
“To confirm if a device you are currently using is compliant, you must verify the device name and model number — as well as the software version — is compliant,” cautions Mike Millian, president of the Private Motor Truck Council of Canada. “That last part is very important. Very few devices currently in use have updated their software and therefore are not currently compliant.”
Millian is urging fleets to confirm the status of the software with their device suppliers. Makes and models may be similar to those of Transport Canada’s list of certified devices, but if the software is not up to date, they are not fully compliant.
Canada’s ELD regulations apply to all carriers and operators in interprovincial or international service, except where exemptions apply. And there are few exemptions:
- Certain motor carriers operating under a permit.
- Equipment subject to a rental agreement of no longer than 30 days.
- Driving within 160 km (100 air miles) of where the driving shift begins and ends (for example, cross-border operations based in Buffalo or Detroit).
- Equipment manufactured before model-year 2000.
“Exemptions are still being worked on for truck drive-away-operators and the motion picture Industry and are expected to be in place by Jan. 1,” Millian says.
Reasons for Canada ELD Enforcement Delay Mostly Resolved
Canada had decided early on not to include a centralized database for transferring electronic records of duty status (eRODS), opting instead for an email or physical transfer process using USB or Bluetooth. As of early November, Canada is still in the process of building out the Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) required to securely transmit encrypted email files.
“Transport Canada was late to the table with this, but now has a vendor in place and the system has been developed to allow this to occur,” said Millian. “Our discussions with ELD providers indicate integration has begun; however, the rollout for all providers is going to take time. We believe most providers, if not all, will have this integrated by Jan. 1.”
According to the Canadian Trucking Alliance (CTA), the provinces and territories are in the process of on-boarding the secure system and enrolling officials.
A statement on the CTA website explains that “Transport Canada has established the secure system to transfer ELD records to enforcement officials. The certification bodies have been on-boarded into the secure process and ELD vendors have all been provided the necessary information to on-board their products.”
American drivers stopped at roadside in Canada will experience a slightly different eRODS transfer process than they are used to. Fleets should bring their drivers up to speed on how to facilitate RODS transfers while in Canada.
Even after all this time, two provinces, British Columbia and Quebec, as well as the Northwest Territories, will not be enforcing the federal ELD regulations by Jan. 1. The process of adopting regulations and getting legislation in place to enforce them is quite different in Canada compared to the U.S., and it varies from province to province.
“While those two provinces expect enforcement to begin sometime in 2023, no confirmed timetable is available,” said Millian. “The Northwest Territories won’t be ready on Jan. 1 but expect to begin enforcement sometime before the end of January.”
All other jurisdictions indicated they either are or will be ready to begin enforcement of the federal regulation by Jan. 1.
There are currently 55 devices on Transport Canada’s list, and more are in certification.
With less than two months to go, carriers operating in Canada should verify the systems are in place and necessary devices have been procured in preparation for the Jan. 1 hard enforcement deadline.
Fleets can access the full text of the Canadian HOS regulations and and download a two-page reference guide to the Canadian ELD rules.
Meanwhile, in the U.S., watch this episode of HDT Talks Trucking to find out what possible changes are in the air for mandatory ELD regulations.