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Heavy vehicle drivers may get to squeeze an extra hour into their day

September 14, 2017

The National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) is looking at allowing heavy vehicle drivers to have an extra hour of driving in their day (or their day off) to address personal matters related to their work, such as finding suitable sleeping accommodation or restocking supplies for the journey ahead.

NHVR CEO Sal Petroccitto told a NatRoad conference audience in North Queensland that the Personal Use Exemption would allow operators some personal use of a heavy vehicle outside their regulated driving hours.

He said the agency has begun a one-month consultation period with industry on a user-friendly exemption for managing fatigue and driving a fatigue-related heavy vehicle for personal use.

NSW already exempts drivers for up to one hour during the driver’s day off. The consultation for the Personal Use Exemption forms part of the NHVR’s Focus on Fatigue.

“We continue to work closely with the heavy vehicle industry to provide flexibility around fatigue while still maintaining the highest safety standards,” he said.

All operators should note that current fatigue laws apply during the consultation process.

Use of work diaries

Mr Petroccitto said a work diary was still the correct way for drivers to manage their work and rest periods while at the same time helping operators to predict and assess a driver’s potential level of fatigue.

He warned industry that there would also be a number of coordinated compliance operations taking place across the country in the coming weeks that would target driver fatigue.

Concern for industry

Fatigued drivers are such a big concern for the heavy vehicle transport industry and its supply chain. But what else should you be concerned with under Chain of Responsibility (CoR) laws?

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CoR Adviser has tips, hints and downloadable tables and charts to help you navigate through this often misunderstood subject that is about to undergo further changes in 2018.

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