Chip shortage affecting some ELD providers

May 28, 2021

Mark Schremmer

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Jermaine Robinson received his own authority earlier this year, but the OOIDA member from Spring, Texas, has been home for the past several weeks.

Robinson says he signed a three-year contract with the ELD provider KeepTruckin in mid-April and planned to hit the road in early May, but a shortage of computer chips put his electronic logging device on delay. As of Thursday, May 27, Robinson said he expected to receive his ELD by the end of the week.

“I’ve been home this whole time,” Robinson said. “Everything else is in compliance. Everything else is up and running, but I can’t move because I don’t have an ELD.”

The global chip shortage has affected the production of everything from automobiles to smartphones. At least a few ELD providers also are being affected by the shortage. According to research from the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association, Keep Truckin said the chip shortage put the San Francisco-based company three weeks behind. Chicago-based Rand McNally told OOIDA it has encountered a sizable issue that could create delays throughout the summer.

However, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration said there are many ELD providers that still have devices in supply.

An FMCSA spokesperson said the agency is aware of the chip situation and that it is affecting some manufacturers, but the shortage is not widespread among the hundreds of self-certified and registered ELD providers. He advised carriers to do some extra planning before they integrate new units into their rigs.

Confirming that the provider has ELDs in stock before signing a contract is recommended.

Tom Crowley, a regulatory specialist in OOIDA’s Business Services Department, said that if a trucker’s ELD malfunctions and it isn’t able to be repaired or replaced within eight days to go to the FMCSA ELD support website and file an extension request per 49 CFR part 395.34 of the regulations. LL

Land Line Now’s Terry Scruton contributed to this report.

 

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Mark Schremmer, senior editor, joined Land Line in 2015. An award-winning journalist and former assistant news editor at The Topeka Capital-Journal, he brings fresh ideas, solid reporting skills, and more than two decades of journalism experience to our staff.