DOT & ELD Guidance Blog

ROADCHECK 2019: Avoiding Hours-of-Service Violations

Follow these best practices for avoiding hours-of-service violations during Roadcheck 2019. Free digital download!
J.J. Keller Senior Editor J.J. Keller Editor

Mark Schedler - Sr. DOT Editor - J. J. Keller & Associates, Inc.

April 26 , 2019

Of all drivers placed out of service during Roadcheck 2018, 43% were due to hours-of-service violations. With the final ELD mandate compliance deadline just months away, hours of service continues to be a focal point of roadside inspections. So how can you make sure your fleet survives Roadcheck 2019 without an hours-of-service violation? Start with these best practices:

New Hire and Refresher Training

Train new hires and provide annual refresher training to existing drivers regarding hours-of-service regulations and electronic logging requirements, including:

  • Duty and driving limits, required breaks, what is and is not considered on-duty time, and the proper use of exceptions
  • The use of intrastate versus interstate hours-of-service regulations, if applicable
  • Entering required information in the ELD before the start of each trip
  • Logging in and out of the ELD or AOBRD device and accepting unassigned driving events
  • Log display and/or transfer procedures
  • Identifying and correcting basic malfunctions
  • The proper use of “Personal Use” and “Yard Move” categories, if applicable

Keep Electronic Logs Current and Certified

Even though electronic logs are usually current to the last change of duty status, be aware. Not only can a driver be cited for “log not current” if they fail to change their electronic log to on-duty (not driving) upon being stopped for an inspection, but unassigned driving events that may have accumulated in the ELD could pose a real problem. If the driver hasn’t accepted applicable events, they may be over the hours-of-service limits after the events are applied to their account, resulting in an out-of-service order and/or falsification citation. Drivers should review these events each day upon login and accept or reject as appropriate.

Make Sure All Applicable Documentation is in Order

Drivers should be aware of their recordkeeping responsibilities, including all documentation that must be organized and available during an inspection. Required documentation includes:

  • Valid driver’s license for the commercial motor vehicle being operated
  • Medical examiner’s certificate
  • The current day’s driver’s record of duty status (log) and supporting documents
  • Previous seven days’ worth of logs and supporting documents
  • AOBRD documentation: Instruction sheet, supply of blank paper logs, list of location codes
  • ELD documentation: User’s manual, data transfer instructions, malfunction instructions, supply of blank paper logs
  • Copy of annual inspection or annual inspection sticker
  • Hazardous materials paperwork
  • Permit credentials including the IRP cab card, IFTA license and decals, and any special/temporary permits
  • Bill of lading/shipping paper
  • Lease agreement

One More Thing…

As you prepare for this year’s Roadcheck event, remember that preparation is only half the battle. When it comes to minimizing roadside inspection violations and the subsequent negative impact to your Compliance, Safety, and Accountability (CSA) scores, ATTITUDE is everything. Coach drivers to remain calm, be respectful, avoid argument, and ask the officer to explain the violation(s). A driver who is professional, courteous, and cooperative may be waived through or experience a smoother inspection, allowing them to get back on the road sooner.

Ensure your fleet is Roadcheck ready, and provide the tools to help drivers prepare for the December 16, 2019 ELD compliance deadline with J. J. Keller’s 2019 Roadside Inspection Digital Resource.


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