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Rules on driver's hours will not be changed, says Government

By: William Hobson
25 November 2010

There are no plans to change the existing laws for domestic driver's hours, the government has announced.

Road Transport reports that Mike Penning, Roads Minister for the coalition government, has confirmed that he has no plans to alter existing restrictions and guidelines for drivers. However, he has revealed that the Department for Transport (DfT) is reconsidering the guidance notes given to operators and drivers concerning the regulations, indicating that commercial driver training could be slightly altered in the near future to ensure that staff are aware of their legal responsibilities when undertaking driving work.

According to Mr Penning, any further restrictions on domestic driver's hours would risk placing "unreasonable burdens" upon the industry. Changes to the domestic laws were expected by many following a recent review of the rules by the DfT, which looked to see if the UK could learn any lessons from regulations in other nations.

"The domestic drivers' hours are vital in ensuring the safety of drivers and others on the road but any further restrictions risk imposing unreasonable burdens on industry," said Mr Penning. "That is why I have decided not to make any changes to the existing domestic drivers' hours legislation."

Although commercial vehicles over 3.5 tonnes come under the scope of EU journeys, as do journeys made across several countries, the UK's domestic laws still cover a significant number of driving jobs within Britain. Under the current regime - and for the visible future - drivers working exclusively within the UK are permitted to drive a maximum of 10 hours, with employee's limited to a maximum of 11 hours of duty per day (both driving and other related work).

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