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Tips for Roadside Inspections

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Roadside Inspection Card.

First published by J.J. Keller.

During a Roadside Inspection, many situations may arise in which officers have questions. Below are some scenarios and some talking points drivers can use in these situations. Above this article is a button for the Roadside Inspection Card which contains information on how to perform data transfers or use the display method for a roadside within the application.  This card is an in-cab requirement and should be with the driver at all times in the vehicle.

Missing Data in the Officer’s View of the Logs

Politely ask the officer to check the display in the roadside mode of the Encompass® ELD application to verify the data is actually missing. The data may be missing from the transferred data due to power down/power up timing compared to the entry time, but visible in the display (the missing data is in the device, it just wasn’t bundled with the data sent to e-rods due to the power down/power up timing).

  • Note: If the data is not in the transferred data and is also not in the display, it is missing and it is a violation.

Missing VIN

Politely mention to the officer that VIN is only required if the device is able to access it on the vehicle’s database (since it is not appearing in the ELD records, it was not available).

Missing Engine Hours/Miles

Politely point out to the officer that these entries are not required if the duty change took place away from the vehicle or the duty change took place when the vehicle was powered down.

Politely ask the officer to check the display as there are times it does not come through to the transferred data due to the power down/power up timing.

Location Does Not Match GIS Formatting

Politely point out that drivers are allowed to manually enter locations if the device cannot automatically determine the location.

The Officer is Unable to Receive Data

Determine if there is cellular/data connectivity.  If not, point this out to the officer and attempt to establish connectivity.

Politely ask the officer if he/she has connectivity and to verify that e-rods is functioning.

Politely ask the officer to check the display method in the roadside mode to verify all required data is present and to determine any missing data may have stopped e-rods from allowing the transfer to take place.

The Officer is Talking About Placing the Driver Out-of-Service Due to the Data Not Transferring

Politely point out to the officer that under the North American Out-of-Service Criteria, the only time a driver is to be put out of service due to the data not transferring is if the driver ALSO cannot provide the display to the officer. As long as the driver can present the display in the roadside mode, the officer should not place the driver out of service if a transfer is not successful.


McCraren Compliance can help you understand and comply with FMCSA, DOT and ADOT and ensure your drivers and your vehicles operate safely and efficiently.

Call us Today at 888-758-4757 or email us at info@mccrarencompliance.com to schedule your free FMCSA Compliance Assessment.