It is important to note that products listed on the FMCSA web site are “self-certified” by the manufacturer and merely registered with, not verified by, the FMCSA. Any product which claims self-certification is subject to challenge, which may trigger rigorous testing and risk potential removal from the market until the challenge is proved or disproved. Or, it may not. Right now, it’s not clear what the challenge process may or may not entail; that’s something in the FMCSA’s proverbial inbox. Regardless, one thing is certain. For fleets, device removal from the market during a compliance challenge could represent significant cost and burden. Smart ELD providers won’t register until their certain they’ve crossed all the t’s and dotted all the i’s within their solutions.
That’s not to say all ELD providers are smart.
It’s being reported within our industry that there are vendors who may have rushed to be among the first to register on the FMCSA’s site, letting “get there first” mentality cloud their decision making process. Jim Park, equipment editor for Heavy Duty Trucking, wrote just last week that “self-certified doesn’t mean compliant.” In his article entitled, “5 Things You Need to Know About ELDs,” Park stresses that the onus is on the buyer to ensure that the solution being considered is truly compliant, and that it accommodates all the exemptions relevant to that particular fleet.
But how can you know?
One red herring, so to speak, is any provider who’s been quiet throughout the SNPRM and final rule enactment commentary periods but suddenly registers itself as a self-certified compliant solution before the major providers do. Have you ever heard of the provider? Do you know any fleets using the provider’s solutions? Then what’s the likelihood they beat everyone to the punch? For additional guidance regarding choosing a qualified vendor, consider checking out “The Ultimate Guide to Buying an ELD” white paper.