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The ELD Mandate timeline
A timeline of events leading up to 16 December 2019, when drivers of commercial motor vehicles and for-hire private motor carriers will be required to have installed and be using an FMCSA-compliant Electronic Logging Device (ELD).
ELD: Just the facts
Want to find out all the essential facts about the ELD Mandate?
Watch our informative ELD webinar, with guest speaker John Seidl.
All about MiX’s ELD solution
ELDs fitted by MiX Telematics as part of our Hours of Service solution are registered with the FMCSA and fully compliant with their specifications in terms of performance, design and technical specifications.

ELD: Glossary

The ELD Mandate, instituted by the FMCSA in December 2015, is a complicated topic. These definitions will help you make sense of foreign and complex terms and acronyms you might encounter on your journey to compliance.

Automatic On Board Recording Device (AOBRD)

An electric, electronic, electromechanical, or mechanical device capable of recording driver's duty status information accurately and automatically. The device must be integrally synchronized with specific operations of the commercial motor vehicle in which it is installed. At a minimum, the device must record engine use, road speed, miles driven, the date, and time of day. Although still used, the term is being phased out to make way for FMCSA-compliant Electronic Logging Devices (ELDs) as mandated in the ELD Final Rule.

Bring Your Own Device (BYOD)

The trucking company or driver can use their own cellphone or tablet as the ELD’s display. ELD regulation still requires a hardwired connection to the truck’s engine, so the smart phone or tablet connects wirelessly to another piece of hardware that’s connected to the ECM.

Commercial motor vehicle (CMV)

Any self-propelled or towed motor vehicle used on a highway in interstate commerce to transport passengers or property and meets at least one of the following criteria: weighs more than 10,000 pounds, has a gross vehicle weight rating or gross combination weight rating of more than 10,000 pounds, transports 16 or more passengers not for compensation or nine or more passengers for compensation, or transports hazardous materials in a quantity requiring placards.

Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA)

The Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA) program is a Department of Transportation initiative that allows the FMCSA to track and evaluate carriers based on compliance and crash history. Carriers that do not score well in the system can be investigated and warned by the FMCSA.

Duty status

Also called Record of Duty status or driver log, duty status is the document used by a driver to record his/her driving time. There are four different status activities, namely “Off duty” or “OFF”; “Sleeper berth” or “SB”; “Driving” or “D” and “On-duty not driving” or “ON”.

Driver log

See ‘Duty status’.

Driver Vehicle Inspection Report (DVIR)

Daily report of any maintenance defects in the vehicle. Many ELDs include a DVIR form in their daily HOS process for the driver.

Electronic logbooks (e-Logs)

Short for electronic logbooks, which are records of driving hours that are captured and stored electronically using an on-board recording device.

Electronic Control Module (ECM)

A device that stores engine data, fault codes and hard-braking and stopping information.

Electronic Logging Device (ELD)

An Electronic Logging Device, or ELD for short, is a device that automatically records driving time and facilitates the accurate recording of Hours of Service (HOS).

Electronic On Board Recorder (EOBR)

An outdated term that replaced AOBRD. This term has been replaced by ELD.

ELD Final Rule

See ‘ELD Mandate’.

ELD Mandate

Also known as the ELD Final Rule, the ELD Mandate was instituted by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) in December 2015 and requires commercial motor vehicle drivers to track their Record of Duty Status electronically, using compliant ELDs versus paper Records of Duty Status (RODS).


The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, whose primary responsibility is to prevent commercial motor vehicle-related fatalities and injuries. See


An action by a motor carrier towards one of its drivers that the motor carrier knew, or should have known, would result in the driver violating the HOS rules.

Hours of Service (HOS)

Hours of Service (HOS) regulations are issued by the FMCSA and govern the maximum hours all motor carriers and drivers can operate a commercial motor vehicle (CMV) in interstate commerce in the United States.


The International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA) is an agreement between the lower 48 states of the United States and the Canadian provinces, to simplify the reporting of fuel use by motor carriers that operate in more than one jurisdiction.

Location data

Location data, in the context of vehicle tracking, is information provided by an on-board device about its current position in space. For the purposes of an ELD, geo-location must be derived from a database that contains all cities, towns, and villages with a population of 5,000 or greater.

Logging Software Programs

Logging software programs are used by certain drivers to help them prepare RODS, but the computers, tablets, and smartphones with such software do not meet FMCSA’s requirements for automatic on-board recording devices (AOBRDs).

Record of Duty

See duty status.

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