The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has announced it will allow drivers of short term rental trucks to use paper logs for up to eight days instead of electronic logging devices. The decision comes in response to the Truck Renting and Leasing Association’s application to exempt from the ELD requirement all drivers operating trucks rented for 30 days or less. TRALA had argued that ELD interoperability concerns will make it difficult to properly track and transfer ELD data, because the rented truck may have an ELD installed that is not compatible with the device the driver normally uses.
FMCSA believes that a limited exemption of up to eight days will provide enough time for a driver to replace or repair their usual vehicle while “minimizing any temptation to extend non-ELD operations.” The exemption can be used by drivers of short term rentals regardless of the reason for the rental. Drivers will be required to carry a copy of the rental agreement as well as a copy of the exemption notice in the vehicle and present it to law enforcement when asked. Evidence that a carrier is replacing one rented truck with another every eight days will be regarded as a violation and subject to the penalties for failure to use an ELD.