With the Electronic Logging Device rule in effect for just over two years, I am still receiving questions about personal conveyance and how drivers can utilize it. As an example, a friend of mine was taking his 10-hour rest break, but the parking spot he was originally in was only a 6-hour spot. A law enforcement officer asked him to relocate his truck due to this guideline. As the driver relocated his truck, he restarted his 10-hour break. Neither the driver nor his company knew how to use personal conveyance to avoid this issue.
To help provide direction in scenarios like the above, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) proposed final guidance applying to any driver authorized to operate a commercial vehicle for personal or non-business reasons. As we know, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSRs) require drivers to document their hours of service (HOS) on records of duty status (RODS), identifying one of four duty status options:
Personal conveyance is the movement of a commercial motor vehicle (CMV) for personal use while the driver is off duty. Motor carriers, at their discretion, may authorize their drivers to use a CMV for personal use. When this occurs, drivers are required to document such use as off duty on their RODS, regardless of the method used to record the driver’s HOS (e.g., paper logs, automatic on-board recording device, electronic logging devices (ELDs), etc.).
The FMCSA's revised personal conveyance guidance focuses on the reason the driver is operating a CMV, without regard to whether the CMV is laden (loaded). It also provides a variety of scenarios as to when the use of personal conveyance is allowable and includes passenger carrier specific scenarios.
The guidance clarifies issues such as:
The ELD rule required ELD manufacturers to include a special driving category for authorized personal use, which includes personal conveyance. Drivers authorized to use personal conveyance may use this feature or remain in off-duty status. In either case, the electronic record should be annotated to explain the circumstances. Be aware that if you are using an electronic method, many systems require the motor carrier to turn on the personal conveyance option within their electronic system.