Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Truck Work Diaries And Log Books Legal Advice

By Guy McEntyre

Once upon a time the most dreaded situation for a truck driver was frying a turbo or blowing a steer on the Nullarbor. State and Federal legislation requires drivers to complete work diaries as part of their employment and the aim is to provide a structure for fatigue management, therefore making our roads safer.

Every day I hear from drivers who have failed to comply with this legal requirement; with the recording rules of the work diary on points that don't relate to fatigue, leading to the widespread feeling that they are a tool to generate revenue for governments.

There are still various interpretations as to what are and what are not the correct method of filling out work diaries and also when they should or should not be completed. This is despite the fact that these requirements have actually been around for some time now.

1. When starting work, you must record the following:

a. Name and current driver's licence number (including the state where licence issued).

b. The day and date of the week.

c. The address and time zone of your base (and if you have more than two employers, the base of each employer);

d. The address at which drivers records are kept.

e. Whether you are working as a solo or a 2-up driver;

f. The work rest option you are working under;

g. Your base's address and zone, including if you have more than two employers.

2. You must record the following immediately after each work and rest change:

a. The nature of the work or rest change;

b. The nature of the change.

c. The time and place of the work and rest change;

d. The registration of each heavy vehicle driven at the time of the change.

e. The odometer reading.

3. You must complete the totals of the work time and the rest time for that day before finishing work.

At the completion of work and prior to commencing rest time, you should be completing your work diary before leaving your truck and equally, at the end of a rest time and before starting work you should complete your diary. The other area attracting attention from authorities is the name spelling of places. It is a subject that is leading to the issuing of fines to drivers along with penalty points which does have implications for licensing.

Regarding fatigue management, make sure you are complying with the rules relating to recording in your work diary so that the next time your diary is inspected it is a far more enjoyable experience.

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