2018 News

09 March 2018

Relaxation of the EU driving and resting time rules in relation to fuel oil deliveries


                                          Weekly rest requirements

The temporary and limited relaxation of the enforcement of the driver hours rules covering the distribution of fuel oil, petroleum related products and domestic heating products is extended to cover the period 28 February 2018 to 11 March 2018.

The requirement to take breaks after 4½ hours driving and weekly rest remains and will continue to be rigorously enforced during the period of the limited relaxation of the rules.

The weekly rest rules require that each driver must, after six 24 hour periods from the end of the previous weekly rest period, take a regular weekly rest period or a reduced rest period. This remains the case during the period of the temporary and exceptional relaxation of the rules.

Recognising current difficulties arising from the recent weather event, the Authority will be taking a pragmatic approach during inspections in respect of cases where drivers take more than 1 reduced weekly rest period over a two week driving period. During these inspections, the history of the drivers and operators overall compliance with the rules in question will be carefully assessed.

Drivers should not be expected to drive whilst tired - employers remain responsible for the health and safety of their employees and other road users. The RSA wishes to make it clear that driver safety or other road user’s safety must not be compromised.

As previously advised, appropriate arrangements must be in place to record any extra driving time being undertaken by drivers resulting from the recent exceptional weather event including the particular circumstances. Drivers must record on the back of their analogue tachograph charts or print-outs the reasons why they are exceeding the prescribed limits.

Any deviation from the driving and resting time rules must be a last resort. HGV operators must put in place contingency measures to cater for emergency and urgent situations and this must be properly documented and retained for inspection. This should be agreed by operators and their drivers.



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