How to Complete a DOT Log

In this video, we’re going to review how to properly complete a DOT Log.



 DOT Logs are required anytime a driver works more than 14 hours or travels more than 150 miles away from their home branch. DOT Logs should be completed at the end of the day before closing out tablets as the tablet carries all of the pertinent information required for completing the log. Failure to complete logs or falsifying logs could expose you and the company to legal prosecution.

The DOT Logbook

To begin, we’ll locate our DOT Logbook from our bag and start by entering today’s date, the company name, the main address, which is always the Gary office, your branch address, truck number, trailer number (if applicable), the total mileage driven for the day. As we look to the bottom of the log, we’ll notice this is where we complete the From and To lines with our start time and end times. With the basic information complete, we’ll now need to grab our tablet to pull up our work history from the day. Completing these logs at the end of the day before closing out our tablet is important because once we log out, the history will be erased, making the log more complicated to complete in the coming days.


With our route history pulled up, we’ll be able to tap into each work order and view our stop times for the day. This information will help us fill out the ruler section on the driver log. Looking at the ruler section, we can see there are four rows. Off Duty, Sleeper Birth, Driving, and On-Duty. Off Duty represents time we were off the clock. Sleeper Birth is not applicable as our trucks do not have sleepers. Driving is the time we were driving the vehicle and On-Duty is time we were on the clock but not driving. Each increment on the ruler represents 15-minute time periods, starting at 12:00am all the way through 12:00pm.


Log Start Times

We’ll now begin to log our time for the day by adding our 30-minute lunch break, down time, and 2nd loads to the log. These times can be found on our cover sheets, whereas all stops times will be found on our tablet or work orders. Our 30-minute lunch break will always be logged as off duty (Line 1) on our DOT log. For our example, we added 30 minutes to the 10:30AM and 11:00AM notches on line 1 and then placed vertical lines from line 1 through line 4 on both ends to indicate our lunch break.


From here, we’ll run our pen across the top “off-duty” line, starting at midnight and continuing until our scheduled start time for the day. For example, if we had a 330am start, we’d run our pen across until we reached the 330am mark.


From here, we’ll need to drag our pen down into the “on duty” column. Knowing the first 30 minutes of our day was used to complete a pre-trip, we’ll need to slide over two notches, as each notch again represents 15-minute time periods. We will also drag the pen down into the open space where we will list the city and state we are working in while On Duty Not Driving.


From here, we will drag the pen from Line 4 On Duty Not Driving up to Line 3 Driving. We will need to access the time of the first stop by viewing the days’ work history on the tablet. As mentioned earlier, it‘s pertinent to complete our logs at the end of the same day. Again, if we log out, we’ll lose our work history and completing our log will be much more difficult.


Logging Stop 1

With the tablet openedto Mobile-Pak, we‘ll first click the 3 vertical dots at the top right corner of the screen which will present us with a drop-down menu where we’ll select History. This gives us access to all our current days’ work history. We’ll then select our stop #1 so the stop is highlighted in yellow and the right side of the screen shows the stops information. To get our stop time for the site, we‘ll need to look for the box on the right side of the screen titled Completed. If the box is not visible at first glance, swipe up on the right side of the screen until the Completed box is visible. Here we’ll see our stop time on site was 4:23AM. We’ll then mark this stop time our DOT log by rounding to the nearest quarter of an hour. Using our memory, we’ll recall this site took about 30 to drive to and another 15 minutes to complete while we were onsite. With this information at hand, we’ll work backwards from our stoptime by dragging our pen across line 4 to indicate the 15 minutes of on-duty we spent outside of the truck. We’ll then slide our pen up onto the vertical line and work backwards indicating our 30 minutes of drive time which happened after we did our pre-trip before leaving the yard.


Now that we’ve logged the time, we’ll need to write the city and state we were working in during this time. We’ll now continue to our log our second stop.


Logging Stop 2

With the first stop logged, we’ll go back to our tablet and click into our second stop by selecting it from the list to the left. We see that our stop time is listed for our second stop is 5:33. Rounding again to the nearest 15 minute increment, we’ll work backwards accounting for what we believe was the time on site to service the unit and our drive time. For this example, it took us 55 minutes to complete the work and 15 time of driving to get there. We’ll make those logs accordingly by starting with our time on site by marking it on line 4 and then jogging our pen up to line 3, accounting for our drive time. Lastly, we’ll list the city and state we were working in during that time. We’ll now continue this process as we mark our remaining stops. [Time lapse video with no talking]

Log End of the Day

Following our last stop of the day, we’ll have driven back to our home terminal and complete a post trip inspection as well as our end of day paperwork. Here we see that we completed our final stop at 5:02PM. We will drag our pen from Line 4 at 5:00PM up to Line 3 and across the notches to 5:30PM indicating our arrival at our home terminal. We’ll then drag the pen from Line 3 Driving, down to Line 4 and into the open space below to list our home terminal city and state and add the 15 minutes it takes to complete the post trip paperwork. From here we’ll drag the pen across the notch on Line 4 between 5:30PM and 5:45PM. Next we’ll drag our pen from the Line 4 up to Line 1 where we will then proceed to drag our pen across line 1 until we reach midnight on the log. Once finished, we’ll tally up the hours across each line to get our total hours for the day, remembering each notch is equal to 15 minutes. We then will combine our totals from lines 3 and 4 and write that number in the top right corner and circle it.