European readers know all about the Working Time Directive and, in particular, the Road Transport Directive.
For those of you that don’t know about these, the directives stipulate how many hours a person can work, how long their breaks should be, etc etc. What’s somewhat strange is that the only people who cannot ‘opt out’ of the regulations are the truck drivers that already have legislation that covers working time in the shape of the Drivers’ Hours Laws – and no, the allowed working time, rests, etc in these rules are, of course, not the same as those in the RTD!
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Anyway whatever you think of it, with the RTD being five years old in April, any employers that introduced Workforce Agreements on or around this time now need to be renegotiated as they are only valid for five years.
RHA Employment Affairs Director Ruth Pott told Tachoblog, “Agreements were negotiated and secured between employers and employees when the regulations were introduced as a means of introducing some flexibility into specific operations. In general, employers and workers can agree to extend the reference period for the average 48 hour working time limit up to a maximum of 26 weeks and agree whether this will be monitored using a fixed or rolling method and be used to exceed the 10 hour limit for night work.”
She concluded, “Don’t delay the renewal of these agreements. They are absolutely essential to the efficient operation of your business”.