MCL Transport Consultants

Driving Limits

EU Rules are common for both HGV and PCV drivers. Where there are some variances within the GB Domestic and Mixed rules, we've laid out the rules seperately within the specific pages, here and the page for AETR they are combined.

'Driving time' is the duration of driving activity recorded either by the recording equipment or manually when the recording equipment is broken.
Even a short period of driving under EU rules during any day by a driver will mean that he is in scope of the EU rules for the whole of that day and must comply with the daily driving, break and rest requirements; he will also have to comply with the weekly rest requirement and driving limit.

Daily Driving Limit
The maximum daily driving time is 9 hours; for example

Maximum Daily Driving Time is 9 hours

The maximum daily driving time can be increased to 10 hours twice a week; for example:

Maximum Daily Driving Time can be increased to 9 hours twice a week

Daily driving time is:

Note: Driving time includes any off-road parts of a journey where the rest of that journey is made on the public highway. Journeys taking place entirely off road would be considered as 'other work'.
So, for example, any time spent driving off road between:

Key Information
Key Information
A fixed week starts at 00.00 on Monday and ends at 24.00 on the following Sunday.

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Weekly Driving Limit
The maximum weekly driving limit is 56 hours, which applies to a fixed week (see Fig.1 below).

Weekly Driving limit
Total weekly hours = (4 x 9) + (2 x 10) = 56.

Two-Weekly Driving Limit
The maximum driving time over any two-weekly period is 90 hours; for example:

Two-Weekly Driving limit

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The following is an example of how a driver's duties might be organised in compliance with the rules on weekly and two-weekly driving limits:

Combined weekly and two-Weekly Driving limit

NB: The following should be taken into consideration at all times as it will have a significant bearing upon the Rules within this part.

Unforeseen Events
Provided that road safety is not jeopardised, and to enable a driver to reach a suitable stopping place, a departure from the EU rules may be permitted to the extent necessary to ensure the safety of persons, the vehicle or its load. Drivers must note all the reasons for doing so on the back of their tachograph record sheets (if using an analogue tachograph) or on a printout or temporary sheet (if using a digital tachograph) at the latest on reaching the suitable stopping place (see relevant sections covering manual entries). Repeated and regular occurrences, however, might indicate to enforcement officers that employers were not in fact scheduling work to enable compliance with the applicable rules.

A judgment by the European Court of Justice dated 9 November 1995 provides a useful guide to how this provision should be interpreted. It can apply only in cases where it unexpectedly becomes impossible to comply with the rules on drivers' hours during the course of a journey. In other words, planned breaches of the rules are not allowed. This means that when an unforeseen event occurs, it would be for the driver to decide whether it was necessary to depart from the rules. In doing so, a driver would have to take into account the need to ensure road safety in the process (e.g. when driving a vehicle carrying an abnormal load under the Special Types regulations) and any instruction that may be given by an enforcement officer (e.g. when under police escort).

Some examples of such events are delays caused by severe weather, road traffic accidents, mechanical breakdowns, interruptions of ferry services and any event that causes or is likely to cause danger to the life or health of people or animals. Note that this concession only allows for drivers to reach a suitable stopping place, not necessarily to complete their planned journey. Drivers and operators would be expected to reschedule any disrupted work to remain in compliance with the EU rules.

Source - VOSA

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