LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – As The Trucker has previously reported, cellular telephone carriers are shutting down their 3G networks. The first announced sunset date is set for Feb. 22, when AT&T will complete the shutdown of its 3G network.
This means that many cellphones and other mobile devices relying on 3G technology will be unable to use data services.
This may also impact motor carriers if their ELDs rely on a 3G network to record hours of service (HOS) data and transfer it to a safety official.
Any ELD that requires 3G cellular connectivity to perform its functionality will no longer be in compliance with the technical specifications in the ELD rule after the 3G network it relies on is sunset, according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA).
“When in an area that does not support 3G, a 3G device will register a malfunction,” an FMCSA news release stated. “In accordance with 49 CFR 395.34, the carrier has eight days to get the malfunction resolved, in this case by replacement, unless an extension is granted.”
Motor carriers should be working with their ELD providers to upgrade or replace ELDs that rely on a 3G network, the FMCSA said.
What actions do motor carriers need to take now?
Confirm whether your ELD relies on a 3G network
If you are unsure if your ELD relies on a 3G network, contact your ELD provider. If your ELD does not rely on 3G, and meets all minimum requirements, no further action is needed.
Ask your provider for their upgrade or replacement plan
If your ELD relies on a 3G network, ask your ELD provider about their plan for upgrading or replacing your device to one that will be supported after the 3G sunset, and to complete the necessary actions as soon as possible.
FMCSA strongly encourages motor carriers to take the above actions as soon as possible to avoid compliance issues. See the announced dates listed below and plan accordingly to avoid service disruptions and compliance issues. Note that portions of carrier 3G networks will be unsupported in advance of the announced sunset dates.
3G sunset dates
The announced sunset dates are below.
- AT&T 3G: Feb. 22
- Sprint 3G (T-Mobile): March 31
- Sprint LTE (T-Mobile): June 30
- T-Mobile 3G: July 1
- Verizon 3G: Dec. 31
Many carriers, such as Cricket, Boost, Straight Talk and several Lifeline mobile service providers utilize the AT&T, Verizon and T-Mobile networks.
Sunset dates are subject to change. Contact your mobile carrier for up-to-date information.
Questions can be e-mailed to [email protected].
The Trucker News Staff produces engaging content for not only TheTrucker.com, but also The Trucker Newspaper, which has been serving the trucking industry for more than 30 years. With a focus on drivers, the Trucker News Staff aims to provide relevant, objective content pertaining to the trucking segment of the transportation industry. The Trucker News Staff is based in Little Rock, Arkansas.