asked Her Majesty's Government:
Whether a self-employed lorry driver who spent four hours loading his lorry and then nine hours driving (with a mid-shift break) would:
- (a) be operating within the drivers' hours regulations; and
- (b) if exempt from the Working Time Directive be capable of driving a heavy goods vehicle safely at the end of a 13-hour shift. [HL4214]
§ The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions (Lord Whitty)
A self-employed driver of a lorry over 3.5 tonnes would be subject to the European Union drivers' hours rules. Under these rules, a driver would normally be allowed to drive up to nine hours a day but this can be increased to 10 hours twice a week. Drivers are also required to take a daily rest of normally 11 hours but this can be reduced to nine hours not more than three times a week. The effect of this is to limit the driver's working day—driving plus other work—to a maximum of 13 hours or 15 hours three times a week. But a driver working a 15-hour day would be required to compensate for the reduction in his daily rest period by taking an equivalent period of rest before the end of the following week.