Trucking Industry

How the Canadian ELD Mandate Will Make Every Driver’s Job Easier

Written by: Sara Steele, Product Manager & Director of Compliance, Drivewyze Inc. 

This is the 2nd post in our series around the Canadian ELD Mandate. You can find our first post here – How the Canadian ELD Mandate Will Make Your Fleet more Efficient. 

Canadian truck drivers have to juggle many stresses on the job. From complying with Hours of Service (HoS) to managing traffic and long lines at weigh stations, there are countless roadblocks that can delay them from getting the job done and going home to their families.  

This has made driver retention a major challenge for most fleets. In fact, the trucking industry reports a consistent annual turnover of more than 90%, with 64.9% of drivers staying with a company for an average of just 90 days.  

The upcoming Canadian Electronic Logging Device (ELD) mandate is a potential solution to this driver dissatisfaction. Coming into effect on June 12th, 2021, with a progressive 12-month phased-in enforcement period, this new regulation will change the way many truck drivers operate. While ELD installation may seem disruptive to fleet operations, it can actually make a driver’s job easier.  

An ELD enhances the driver experience by providing digital HoS tracking, innovative safety features, time-saving route alerts, and weigh station bypasses to avoid long wait times. These benefits transform their daily routine, making them more confident on the road and more satisfied to drive in your fleet for the long haul.  

Making Day-to-Day Tasks Digital     

An ELD allows drivers to digitize many of their day-to-day tasks, making the jobs easier and faster to complete. Digital HoS logging technology automatically tracks the driver’s hours for them as they drive. This relieves them of pen and paper logging and provides peace of mind that they are complying with the HoS rules.  

To alleviate the pressure of mapping out their routes, most ELDs also provide drivers with intuitive GPS functionality. Drivers can take advantage of hands-free navigation that automatically finds the safest and most efficient route for upcoming deliveries.  

ELDs can also make communication more streamlined, allowing drivers to coordinate with dispatch, management, and customers all in one place. Plus, most ELD-integrated software can be operated on the driver’s personal mobile device for even easier communication during a busy workday.  

Features That Make Them Feel Safe   

Operating a large motor vehicle can put a lot of mental and physical stress on truck drivers. They are constantly looking for ways to optimize their own safety and the safety of others on the highway.  

The Canadian ELD mandate is actually designed to improve safety. By requiring most commercial truck drivers to digitally log their HoS, the mandate ensures that drivers stay within their hourly driving limits and remain conscious of fatigue while on the job.  

However, ELD technology can do more than simply keep track of HoS. One of the top ELD driver benefits is access to innovative, proactive safety alerts. Drivewyze Safety+, for example, offers customizable in-cab notifications that can tell drivers if they’re about to approach steep grades, rollover areas, or historically dangerous routes. Depending on the ELD’s software, drivers can take advantage of speed and parking alerts to stay mindful at every point in their journey.  

The ELD mandate also eliminates the need for a windshield transponder. To transmit information to law enforcement at scale houses, drivers typically have to change lanes to drive under a transponder-reader. ELD-integrated weigh station bypass software allows personnel to receive this information automatically at weigh stations in 47 operational and in-progress states and provinces, including Ontario and Alberta. Drivers can therefore avoid dangerous lane changes and keep their windshield vision unobstructed.  

Tools to Keep Them Moving  

On top of every other responsibility in a truck driver’s day, using their time effectively is a major concern. They want to suit up, work hard, and get home in time for dinner. But the reality of scale house wait times and road delays can slow them down. Plus, drivers are often not compensated for time spent idling.  

Advanced features of ELDs, like those required by the Canadian ELD mandate, can help drivers avoid road delays. High traffic alerts warn drivers before an upcoming traffic jam, giving them time to make proactive route changes and potentially avoid it. Many GPS systems also offer intuitive rerouting that tells the driver exactly which detour to take, so they can stay focused on the road.  

If their ELD is integrated with weigh station bypass software, like Drivewyze PreClear®, drivers can also receive fewer inspections and bypass more scale houses. This helps them deliver loads faster, tighten turnaround times to log more billable hours on the road, and reduce accidental weigh station bypasses and the citations that come with it. In addition to benefiting drivers, weigh station bypass can also be an incredible asset for your overall fleet efficiency 

The Pride of a Job Well Done  

Through streamlined operations, improved safety, and time-efficient tools, the Canadian ELD mandate will give your drivers the opportunity to be proud of their work.  

Drivers will feel more confident on the road, knowing that they are supported by a digital network of customized alerts, simple communication tools, and automated tracking. The better they are at their job, the more enthusiastic drivers will be about their extremely important role in the fleet.  

When selecting compliant ELDs for drivers, ensure you choose one that is certified by Transport Canada and offers everything your driver needs to excel at their job, including features like Drivewyze PreClear. Ask your ELD provider about Drivewyze free trial and experience first-hand how it can boost driver satisfaction and retention for your fleet.