A new navigation and software update for Rand McNally’s line of mobile fleet management devices, including the HD 100, TND 760 and TPC 7600, is on the way that will provide not only a full map update and new navigation capabilities, but a supplementary hours of service (HOS) rules feature as well.

Specifically, the company said its software release includes an updated road network and more than 50,000 changes that impact routing, restrictions, and clearances. The release also features additional specialty HOS rules for tracking hours – including HOS for motor coaches, for trucks traveling from the U.S. into Canada (HOS Cycle 1), and intrastate rules in three states.

Rand McNally added that this update – announced during the National Private Truck Council’s 2014 Education Management Conference this week – is being made available “over the air” to existing customers and will be included on all new devices.

Other specific features within in this update include:

  • A new “Compare Routes” feature, which provides drivers with a primary route and a reasonable alternate on a map for quick review. This feature allows drivers to then select their route.
  • Speed limit updates across the U.S. and Canada.
  • More than 50,000 changes that impact routing – including updates to vertical clearance and weight restrictions, number of axels permitted, and low ground clearance railroad crossings (such as “hump” railroad crossings).
  • More than 2,000 updates to truck-relevant point of interest such as weigh stations, rest areas/welcome centers, and truck-friendly hotels; the update includes the addition of 157 rest areas and 77 CAT Scales.
  • Updates to state emergency contact phone numbers, and the latest information on truck trailer length information by state.
  • The addition of Motor coach HOS rules, Canadian HOS Cycle 1 rules, and intrastate HOS rules for Florida, Texas and California.
  • Support for the California Agricultural HOS exemption.

Customer Veriha Trucking offered an example of how Rand McNally’s new HOS feature can help fleets with tasks related to those regulations. Greg Hall, Veriha’s director of safety, said the carrier follows Canadian HOS rules yet manually tracking the differences between the Canadian and U.S. rules – 70 hours of driving during seven days in Canada vs. 70 hours of driving during eight days in the U.S., translating to 13 hours of driving time per day in Canada vs. 11 in the U.S. – is complicated and time consuming.

“Being able to convert their available hours within Canada and the U.S. at the touch of a button has been a big benefit to drivers that operate regularly in both countries,” Hall added. “Drivers can see precisely what hours are available to them in each country and develop an accurate trip plan with that information. Ultimately, an accurate trip plan results in better customer service, maximized earning potential, and the confidence of running compliant.”