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Sandberg says fleets should consider testing at least two or three ELD systems prior to purchasing them Photo by Aaron MarshFleet Owner Photo: Aaron Marsh/Fleet Owner

Why we need an ELD exemption for leased vehicles

The 90-day exemption the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration granted the Truck Renting and Leasing Association on the use of electronic logging devices for vehicles rented for 30 days or fewer is expiring on April 19.

The March 13 Federal Register shows that TRALA is now requesting an exemption through the end of this year. TRALA said it filed the request to give people who use rental vehicles more time to develop strategies for complying with the ELD mandate. TRALA said in its request that FMCSA has recognized the unique compliance concerns of the short-term CMV rental vehicle market by granting a partial exemption from the ELD requirements for vehicles rented for no longer than 8 days.

TRALA does not believe the exemption will impact safety because hours of service regulations will remain in place and drivers will still have to maintain paper records of duty status.

The sticking point with ELDs in rental vehicles is that a fleet may have one type of ELD in its existing trucks but that might not be the same ELD as the one in a rental truck. TRALA believes the lack of interoperability will result in a financial burden on fleets.

Many TRALA members already have solutions or are working on them including building cloud-based portal systems between ELD providers, and purchasing thousands of ELDs for rental trucks. Nevertheless, the TRALA filing stated that its members and their customers need additional time to come into full compliance with ELD requirements.

According to TRALA, every customer’s needs are unique. An additional period through the end of this year to prepare for this transition would allow their members to continue resolving the issues presented by new technology and the need for individual customer-based compliance strategies. It would also allow lessors to meet seasonal demand for short-term rental vehicles through the holiday season in November and December of this year

NationaLease, which is a TRALA member, welcomes the extension on the exemption to give fleets, ELD companies and law enforcement more time to work through the issues surrounding the use of ELDs in rental vehicles.

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