On Feb. 25, the Société de l’assurance automobile du Québec informed the Quebec transportation industry, through its newsletter Le Relayeur, that the use of electronic logging devices (ELDs) in Quebec will not be mandatory as of June 12.
However, Le Relayeur reports that work to harmonize provincial regulations with those of the federal government is still in progress, and that to make the use of the ELDs mandatory in Quebec, amendments are required to the province’s Highway Safety Code and the regulation respecting the hours of driving and rest of heavy vehicle drivers.
“The hours-of-service regulations are defined by Standard 9 of the Canadian Council of Motor Transport Administrators (CCMTA), a federal organization. But the regulations enforced by the police and road inspectors are provincial,” explains Normand Bourque, coordinator, technical and operational files at the Association du camionnage du Québec (ACQ).
“Although these regulations are based on [the] CCMTA standard, they are developed – and enforced – by each province. And the provinces have fallen behind in developing these new regulations.”
Since each province has its own hours-of-service regulation, it is possible the ELD mandate will be postponed by provinces, even if the federal enforcement date will not change.
“The new [federal] regulation on ELDs will therefore come into force on June 12, 2021, as planned, but there will be no one to enforce it [in Quebec],” Bourque continued.
Pending the update of provincial regulations, law enforcement will continue to enforce the current regulation authorizing the use of paper daily logs.
The announcement did not please the ACQ and its members.
“During the Board of Directors meeting on Feb. 25, the issue of ELDs was raised and several of the administrators reacted strongly and said they were disappointed that the provincial administrations are not yet ready for the enforcement of the Canadian ELD regulation on June 12,” said Marc Cadieux, CEO of the ACQ. “This issue is of a security and competitive nature. They are disappointed with this announcement as [member carriers] have invested heavily over the years in order to be ready to comply.”
Work to harmonize Quebec’s regulations with those of the federal government should be completed in 2022, said the SAAQ.