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Jargon busting advice on the Road Transport
(Working Time) Regulations and an online Driver Hours Calculator.
Provided free of charge by The Working Time Guru.

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Glossary: Short explanations of the technical terms used
Mobile worker
A worker is anyone who provides work or services under a contract, express or implied. A mobile worker is any worker forming part of the travelling staff (typically drivers and crew, but also trainees and apprentices) who is in the service of an undertaking which operates road transport services for passengers or the movement of goods. Mobile workers include drivers who work for hire and reward companies or companies with own account operations.
examples include: Drivers, Porters, Draymen, Map readers, Drivers' mates or Drivers double manning.
Working Time
"Loosely speaking, covers driving and other duties normally associated with working. It does not include breaks or periods of availability."
Please also see the Working Time and Period of Availability example webpage.
Periods of Availability?
"A period of waiting time, the duration of which is known in advance."
Please also see the Working Time and Period of Availability example webpage.
Additional work
Any other driving or non driving work done for another employer or Employment business, including, driving, bar work, labouring, security work.
The people you work for and who pay your wages.
Working Week
The working week must start and finish at 00.00 hours on Monday morning. The starting point for calculating the average 48 hour and 60 hour weekly limits should always, therefore, be 00.00 on Monday morning.
Reference period
The period of time over which working time is averaged. The number of hours worked each week should normally be averaged out over 17 weeks. The reference period can be extended to 26 weeks by a collective or workforce agreement (relevant agreement).
Night Time
Night time is the period between midnight and 4am for mobile workers in goods vehicles and 1am and 5am for those on passenger services. Employers and workers cannot choose a different period.

If a mobile worker does any work during the night time period, they will be subject to the night work limit. The night work limit can only be exceeded where this is permitted in a relevant agreement.
Night Limit
Unless you have a relevant agreement, workers are limited to 10 hours' work (i.e. working time) over the 24 hour period. As with the other working time limits under this legislation, breaks and periods and periods of availability are not included in the 10 hour limit.
The 10 hours work per 24 hour period should not be confused with 10 hours night work per day. This rule prevents a mobile worker who does the maximum 10 hours working time, starting earlier on the next day.
Refers to in and around the vehicle, the employer's premises, and other places where the mobile worker might work (e.g. at the customer's site)
Relevant Agreement
These can be either a collective agreement or work force agreement.
In general, employers and workers can agree to extend the reference period for the average 48 hour working time limit up to 26 weeks and agree whether this will be monitored using a fixed or rolling method. Agreements can also be used to exceed the 10 hour limit for night work.
Collective Agreement
An agreement between an employer and an independent trade union.
Workforce Agreement
An agreement between an employer and the workforce. (If a worker has any part of their conditions determined by a collective agreement they cannot be subject to a workforce agreement).
The European Agreement Concerning the Work of Crews of Vehicles Engaged in International Transport.
Provisions in the European legislation that allow member states to introduce some added flexibility. In this case, extending the reference period up to 26 weeks for calculating the average working week and allowing workers to exceed the 10 hour limit for night work.
Self-employed driver
This is not the same definition as that used by the Inland Revenue or in other UK employment legislation.
"Self-employed driver" means anyone whose main occupation is to transport passengers or goods by road for hire or reward within the meaning of Community legislation under cover of a Community licence or any other professional authorisation to carry out such transport, who is entitled to work for himself and who is not tied to an employer by an employment contract or by any other type of working hierarchical relationship, who is free to organise the relevant working activities, whose income depends directly on the profits made and who has the freedom, individually or through a co-operation between self-employed drivers, to have commercial relations with several customers".
A self-employed driver must have an operator's licence.

The amount of control that the driver has over their work is a key point, as is their reliance on profits to provide them with an income.
If the worker is restricted (either implicitly or explicitly) from working for another client / customer, then they would be covered by all the requirements of these regulations.
In addition, most agency workers would not count as a self-employed driver because they are normally paid at a fixed rate. Once they accept a job, an agency worker is not free to organise their working activities.

Easy to understand and free advice on the Working Time (Road Transport) Regulations (WTRT) by The Working Time Guru. Please contact us with any problems, suggestions, comments or questions you may have using this form.
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Disclaimer This website should be read in conjunction with the relevent legislation and appropriate legal advice.

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