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In the latest Government response to the Covid-19 pandemic, as of 00:01 on 18 March 2020 until 23:59 on 16 April 2020 the Department for Transport has relaxed parts of the EU Drivers’ Hours rules for drivers of vehicles involved in the delivery of food, non-food (personal care, household paper and cleaning) and over the counter pharmaceuticals when undertaking the following journeys;
1) Distribution centre to stores (or fulfilment centre)
2) From manufacturer or supplier to distribution centre (including backhaul collections)
3) From manufacturer or supplier to store (or fulfilment centre)
4) Between distribution centres and transport hub trunking
5) Transport hub deliveries to stores
This exemption does not apply to drivers undertaking deliveries directly to consumers.
For the drivers and work in question, the EU rules can be temporarily relaxed as follows;
Drivers must not use relaxation ‘a’ and ‘d’ at the same time. The DFT also reminds drivers and operators that safety must not be compromised and drivers should not be expected to drive whilst tired.
If the drivers use this relaxation, they must record the reason why on the back of their analogue tachograph card or digital printout. We would encourage drivers to annotate on two printouts, with one being retained by them and one provided to the operator.
Whilst the EU drivers hours rules have been relaxed, there is no such relaxation for the Road Transport (Working Time) Regulations 2005 and drivers will still have to comply with the maximum 60 hour working week and 48 hour average working week over your reference period.
When the analysis of such tachograph records are returned, Operators should look to annotate the infringement reports that the driver was using such relaxation only if the driver has provided a printout/tachograph annotated with the reason why.
Also if drivers are engaged in international journeys, we would advise that they carry a copy of the DFT relaxation (copy can be found at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/temporary-relaxation-of-the-enforcement-of-eu-drivers-hours-rules/temporary-relaxation-of-the-enforcement-of-the-drivers-hours-rules-delivery-of-essential-items-to-retailers ) in order to provide to the relevant authorities if stopped.
We suspect that there will be more relaxations/changes of policy announced in due course and will endeavour to bring them to your attention as quickly as possible.
Please contact the regulatory team on 01254 828300 or firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.