The fleet tracking industry, as with any others, has been noticing dramatic shifts among how to go about business operations. In 2012, the MCP50 device launched as an “end all be all’ for ELDs. However, times have changed and dramatic transitions have taken place regarding service providers and their participation in the fleet management industry.
Sprint, the service provider to all Omnitracs MCP50s, is shutting down their 3G networks on December 31st, 2021. They reasoned this decision by issuing a statement, saying “We are retiring the older Sprint 3G network to free up resources and spectrum as we combine Sprint’s assets with T-Mobile’s to help us strengthen our entire network to deliver a transformative 5G network experience.”
In contrast to other service providers, Sprint will not be gradually taking down towers. On December 31, 2021 they will turn off all 3G towers at once, making all 3G access areas inaccessible simultaneously. This means that on the mark of 2022, every single MCP50 device will no longer be operable, without exception. All fleets being tracked with MCP50s will lose data and face potential fines from the Department of Transportation (DOT) and could be put out of service as a result.
ELDs offer exact time and location tracking, ensuring drivers’ aren’t overworked or working with unsafe conditions. With regards to the benefits and safety features, it is necessary to keep a working ELD in each vehicle within the fleet. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) requires an active ELD under the “ELD Rule.” There are many requirements under this law to ensure safe fleet practices, but with an advanced or high-quality ELD these requirements can all be met with a single device. Without compliance to the FMCSA ELD rules, not only do you have the potential to take personal losses, but you face federal fines that are certain if conditions are not met. These fines are extensive, including $10,000.00 per person not maintaining ELD standards. With a high cost fine, not following FMCSA regulations is undoubtedly enough to ruin your business’s bottom line.
For fleet companies all over the United States, it’s time to disconnect your MCP50. Although it may be challenging, there is no way around the fact that it simply won’t operate in the next couple months. We recommend replacing your MCPs as soon as possible with the Omnitracs 4G IVG. Although you may request a 4G ELD to replace your MCP50 before the December 31, 2021 deadline, these devices have limited supply due to high demand. It is important to reserve your units a healthy amount of time before you need them as it may take longer than usual to have products shipped to your business.
Here at Gentrifi GPS, we are working hard to carry out orders for our customers and trying to ensure the product is in the hands of fleet managers well before the shut-down begins. However, as previously stated, Sprint’s shut down will not come in phases and go into full effect on December 31, 2021. So if you have a MCP50, your fleet’s ELD will be impacted immediately without exception.
Although you may think you’re in the clear, it is strongly recommended to contact a Gentrifi GPS representative to find out if you have a MCP50 or if you’ll be affected by the 3G shut down. Our representatives will ensure that your ELD situation is secure, compliant, and convenient under your fleet’s demands. Don’t wait to replace your ELD, let Gentrifi GPS help.