A commercial motor carrier’s failure to ensure that a driver’s hours of service (HOS) records are accurate remains a top violation—even in the world of electronic logging devices (ELDs). And Department of Transportation audits shows that the ELD mandate hasn’t stopped some truckers from trying to falsify their driving records. Below is a review of what Investigators look for with a DOT Audit.  This article was published in the Bulk Transporter magazine, written by Cristina Commendatore.

Dave Osiecki, who is the president and CEO of Scopelitis Transportation Consulting and a 34-year transportation industry veteran, noted during the virtual Trimble in.sight user conference that when undergoing compliance investigations, it is important for trucking companies to know what to prepare for and what to look out for. Safety investigators refer to the Electronic Field Operations Training Manual (eFOTM), essentially the playbook for the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) and its state partners to conduct audits.

There are two elements by which the government audits ELD records for HOS compliance: A pre-investigation component and the actual investigation of records. During the pre-investigation stage, an investigator verifies that ELDs are indeed required to be used by the company. They also verify that the company’s devices meet the requirements under the federal mandate.

Investigators also confirm with the company that the ELD data can be retrieved electronically and can be transmitted to the investigator either on-site or off-site through an electronic portal between the company and FMCSA. Additionally, the ELD requirement determines which driver records will be audited.

If you are going to be undergoing an audit, it’s important to know which drivers and how many drivers will be selected for an audit. For more information on the investigation process and requirements before and during an audit, read the entire article “What Investigators Look for with a DOT Audit” in the Bulk Transporter magazine.

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