Written by Mickael Vaillancourt on July 10, 2018 in News

You may have heard about electronic logbooks: some like them, others don’t. One thing is sure, no one feels neutral about electronic logbooks, and, more and more, they’re becoming the standard. Don’t know much about them and would like more information? Below, we’ll attempt to answer most of your questions.

How does an electronic logbook work?

An electronic logbook is an unmodifiable register, a tool that records every move a truck makes. It’s impossible to falsify data regarding driving and stop times, as they are established by GPS.

However, the driver must specify when the truck is stopped whether it is time tagged as work, rest or sleep (sleeping berth), as the logbook cannot determine this.

Is it a requirement?

It depends on the territory covered. A transportation company whose trucks remain within Canada’s borders is not yet required to equip its fleet with an electronic logbook system, at least not at the moment. However, the requirement will eventually be instituted. In the United States, a new regulation came into effect on December 18, 2017, for trucks over 10,001 pounds, or 4536 kg, with only a few exceptions. Starting in December 2019, Canada will follow suit.

Significant benefits

Electronic logbooks, also called e-logs, were initially designed to ensure driver safety. Indeed, they are work tools designed to prevent accidents that sometimes occur when a truck driver drives too long in a bid to meet a tight deadline and forgets to rest between two trips or during a long-distance journey. It also allows a driver to be “legal” since they must strictly follow the indications regarding driving time and rest. As a result, roadside checks will be less stressful for them than with paper logs since controllers know that it is impossible to alter electronically recorded data.

Once drivers have learned how to use e-logs, the job is made easier for the driver, the dispatcher and everyone at the company. Moreover, e-logs make everyone more efficient by reducing paperwork and chance of errors. The end tally is clear: fewer accidents and logging errors and less time lost equal lower costs for the company!

Should you make the leap?

Change is scary but unavoidable. While some trucker drivers initially adopted logbooks with a bit of reluctance, they ended up liking them a great deal! Likewise, a company that has integrated this system shows its concern for the safety and well-being of its employees, while also reducing its operating costs.

We hope this article was helpful to you.