As part of European and US/Canadian regulations to reduce accidents, commercial motor vehicle drivers must follow regulations limiting their driving hours.

Lab tests have shown that most people can’t really estimate when they become drowsy; as a result, it became essential to regulate driving hours without depending on the drivers’ own judgment as to when they need to take a break.

Many countries have their own regulation mechanisms to limit driving hours for commercial vehicles, based on what they estimate would be suitable for their drivers. The most commonly known regulations are the DTCO for the European region, FMCSA for the US, and Commercial Vehicle Drivers Hours of Service for Canada.

At Cellocator, we ensure compliance with these regulations through an interface for transferring the data to the backend.

USA & Canada

To properly calculate and present hours of service according to its regulations, an Electronic Logging Device (ELD) is used in the US and Canada. This requires integral synchronization by interfacing with the commercial vehicle Engine Control Unit (ECU); in turn, this automatically captures engine power status, vehicle motion status, miles driven, and engine hours.

Most ELD applications require an ECU data collection device (Fleet Tracking Device) in order to obtain the information they need from the vehicle CANBUS to facilitate the hours of service application.

What is required from the Fleet Tracking Device?

  • Provide the necessary data required from the ECU - engine power status, vehicle motion status, milesdriven, and engine hours.
  • Large database of vehicle types and models for CANBUS parameter integration.
  • The device should be able to connect with the ELD directly, either through a physical interface, wired or wireless connection.

Since the HOS application, ELD and Fleet Tracking Device are usually an integral part of a full Fleet Management solution, choosing the right fleet device is critical as it relates to the entire system compliance, capabilities, performance and durability.

Cellocator, with its Cello-CANiQ product line for Intelligent Fleet Management (FMS solutions), receives the necessary and essential information to facilitate a full ELD application of HOS, as well as advanced features that support the special features and functionalities of a comprehensive FMS solution.

The BT Extender serves as a Bluetooth interface, supporting the wireless communication channels between the Cello-CANiQ and ELD device. Cello-CANiQ, together with the BT Extender, provides the right access to the ELD device and sends the relevant information to fulfill the regulation requirements.


The Digital Tachograph is a recorder of the professional drivers’ activities (including rest periods and driving hours). It provides trustworthy information to EU enforcers controlling compliance with Social Regulation (EC) No 561/2006.

The benefits of a digital tachograph include:

  • Increases road safety by controlling driving activity (limiting daily driving hours for drivers).
  • Ensures minimum working conditions standards for professional drivers.
  • Guarantees fair competition between EU transport companies.
  • Reduces management efforts and costs.

Connection between the digital tachograph and the on-board computer allows operators to read the driver card and the mass memory while the vehicle is out on the road. Advanced FMS systems warn both the back- office and the drivers in real-time if the permitted driving and resting times are about to be exceeded.


If the digital tachograph is connected to the CANBUS, vehicle-related data can also be registered and processed, in addition to trip-related data. This opens up the possibility to monitor fuel consumption and the drivers’ driving style.

How is it done?

The Cello-CANiQ unit uses the online information provided by the DTCO device (note that we have reviewed two DTCO device manufacturers: VDO and Stoneridge) for providing the Fleet Management application with sufficient data for DTCO based reports and alerts, such as:

  • Drivers status and working hours reports
  • Vehicle working hours and usage
  • Violation of working hours regulation alert
  • Over speeding alerts
  • Using measured vehicle information such as speed and odometer to enrich existing reports

Tachograph data forwarding

There are two sources of information via which the Cello-CANiQ device can receive tachograph data; direct from the DTCO (D8 connector) which is the rich information source, or via J1939 connectivity (according to FMS standards) to the vehicle ECU. The data transfer from the Cello CANiQ device to the backend is performed via Type 11 protocol.

Remote company card authentication and remote data downloading

(This feature is to be developed together with the Fleet Management back office platform)

As part of DTCO regulations, it is required to also support remote authentication and remote data downloading from the DTCO to the backend. The trigger for such a process can come from the DTCO itself or from the backend. For that purpose, the Cello CANiQ unit should be able to connect to the DTCO's CAN interface.

The protocol between the backend and DTCO via the Cello CANiQ unit is defined in the "Digital Tachograph Specification for remote company card authentication and remote data downloading Version 2.0" document.