FMCSA Provides UPS HOS ELD AOBRD Guidance and Grants Exemptions

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) issued guidance for the grandfathering of AOBRD HOS ELD 2 year exemption.

UPS requested an exception since it believed that the best way to transition its operations from AOBRDs to ELDs would be on a site-by-site basis. They requested that new trucks delivered after December 18, 2017 could be equipped with AOBRD when existing vehicles at the site use AOBRD. This would reduce costs, risk of errors and confusion.

AOBRD Guidance for Replacing CMVs

Question: According to § 395.8, if a motor carrier “installs and requires a driver to use an AOBRD. . .before December 18, 2017 they may continue to use the AOBRD until December 16, 2019.” Does this mean I can move an AOBRD from one vehicle to another after December 18, 2017?

Response: If your operation uses AOBRDs before December 18, 2017, and you replace vehicles in your fleet you can install an AOBRD that was used in the previous CMV. However, you may not purchase and install a new AOBRD in a vehicle after December 18, 2017.

Thus, the 1,061 new tractors that UPS plans to purchase after the December 18, 2017 “grandfathering” deadline to replace existing tractors that are currently equipped with AOBRDs will be permitted to utilize the AOBRDs from the replaced vehicles until December 16, 2019. However, the remaining 469 new tractors that will be purchased to accommodate projected growth will be required to be equipped with ELDs in accordance with section 395.8(a)(1)(i).

FMCSA decided not to require full interoperability between all ELDs (and AOBRDs) in the final rule because while full interoperability would have some benefits, it would also be complicated and costly. FMCSA recognizes that a motor carrier, including UPS, may need to support a mix of both AOBRD and ELD systems within its fleet for a limited time until the carrier can fully implement ELDs in all its vehicles. As noted in the final rule, if a driver uses multiple ELD or AOBRD systems that are not compatible (e.g., the data file from one system cannot be uploaded into the other system), the driver must either manually enter the missing duty status information or provide a printout from the other system so that an accurate accounting of the duty status for the current and previous 7 days is available for authorized safety officials.

The company requested three other exemptions:

Exemption Approved. All motor carriers and drivers using portable, driver-based ELDs are exempt from the requirements of section 395.26(c) and section 395.26(g) unless the driver is in the CMV with the engine powered. When a driver using a portable, driver-based ELD changes duty status or logs in/logs out of the ELD away from the vehicle and without the vehicle powered, the driver is required to annotate the ELD record to indicate the appropriate duty status in accordance with section 395.30. When the driver is in the CMV, and the CMV is powered, the portable, driver-based ELD is required to automatically record the data elements specified in section 395.26.

Exemption Approved. A motor carrier is permitted to configure an ELD so that a driver can select “yard moves” in accordance with section 395.28(a)(1)(ii) without complying with Section of Appendix A to Subpart B of part 395, which requires a driver's yard-move status to reset to none if the ELD or CMV's engine goes through a power-off cycle (ELD or CMV's engine turns off and then on). However, the ELD must switch from “yard move” status to “driving” status if (1) the driver inputs the “driving” mode; (2) the vehicle exceeds a speed of 20 mph; or (3) the vehicle exits a geo-fenced motor carrier facility. For the reasons discussed above, FMCSA believes that the level of safety that will be achieved with the exemptions will likely be equivalent to, or greater than, the level of safety achieved without the exemptions.

No Exemption Needed. Because UPS wash and fuel employees do not operate CMVs on public roads they are not subject to the HOS regulations. Accordingly, the UPS wash and fuel employees do not need to use ELDs, and no temporary exemption is necessary.

Dates Effective

The exemptions are applicable from October 20, 2017 through October 20, 2022.

Up Next: FMCSA ELD, A Three-phase Implementation Timeline