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Professional drivers

Exemptions to tachograph use

The law exempts certain commercial vehicles from using tachographs.


In a limited number of cases the installation and use of a tachograph is not required. These are usually lighter working vehicles such as vans, private not-for-hire minibuses, and vehicles that work in specialised areas such as within ports, on farms, and used by the Defence Forces. Some types of vehicles exempt include: 

  • a passenger vehicle constructed and equipped to carry not more than nine people, including the driver
  • a vehicle whose gross vehicle weight is not more than 3.5 tonnes
  • a vehicle with a maximum authorised speed not exceeding 40kph
  • a vehicle with between 10 and 17 seats (including driver’s seat) used exclusively for the non-commercial carriage of passengers. For example, a minibus owned by a sports club and used only to transport club members to and from sporting events. 

Exemptions & Derogations

Download and read our comprehensive guide to tachograph and drivers’ hours exemptions. 

Tachograph and Drivers' Hours Exemptions and Derogations Feb 2023 pdf | 155 KB

Drivers, operators and bus and truck owners will be prosecuted if they claim an exemption they’re not entitled to. 

Pursuant to Article 14(2) of Regulation (EC) No 561/2006, in response to the extraordinary crisis situation faced by Irish farmers due to prolonged wet weather, a temporary and limited relaxation of the enforcement of EU driving and rest time has been granted for the drivers of vehicles transporting animal feed and fertiliser. This temporary relaxation applies from 22nd April 2024 and will run until 5th May 2024.  Further details are available in RSA Notice_Temporary Drivers Hours Derogation_Transport of Animal Feed and Fertiliser.


How to apply for an exemption

 If you believe your vehicle is exempt from tachograph regulations you must declare your exemption by following these steps: 

  1. Download and complete the Tachograph Declaration Form (PDF) or ask your Commercial Vehicle Roadworthiness (CVR) testing centre to print a copy of the form which will be pre-populated with your vehicle details 
  2. Bring the signed form to your nearest CVR testing centre where the vehicle needs to be comprehensively checked to ensure it meets the exemption requirements 
  3. Ask the CVR testing centre to stamp the form in the box at the bottom of page two: ‘Stamp of authorised tester’ and then request that they upload the form to the test record on their computer system. 

Related documents

Guide to EU Rules on Drivers Hours pdf | 1932 KB

Related pages

Services Tachograph equipment

Digital and analogue tachograph equipment. Vehicles requiring tachographs and vehicles exempt. Vehicle units, data downloading, training and prosecutions.