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NSW Driver Fatigue Work Diary Exemptions Expire Soon

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Published under Law Reform, News

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April 28, 2016

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From 1 May 2016 there will be changes to work diary requirements for heavy vehicle drivers. Drivers operating under Advanced Fatigue Management (AFM) and Basic Fatigue Management (BFM) will now need to carry and complete their work diary for all journeys.

What’s changed?

Previously in NSW work diaries only needed to be filled in when drivers travelled outside of a radius of 100 km from their base, or if they had made such a trip within the past 28 days.

This applied to all drivers, whether they were operating under Standard Hours, BFM or AFM.

From 1 May 2016 the 100km exemption no longer applies for AFM or BFM drivers.

These changes bring NSW in line with the other States and Territories under the National Heavy Vehicle Law.

What must drivers do?

If you are working under AFM or BFM you must now carry and complete your work diary for all journeys, irrespective of the distance travelled.

If you are operating under Standard Hours there are no changes. You need to complete your work diary if:

  • you are working outside of you 100km radius; or
  • you have worked outside the radius within 28 days; or
  • you have worked under AFM, BFM or exemption hours within the last 28 days.

All drivers are required to comply with the driver fatigue laws, such as work and rest times, for all trips. This is true even if you’re not required keep a work diary for the trip.

How can I prepare for the changes?

If you don’t have a work diary you should buy one as soon as possible. You can obtain the National Driver Work Diary from the Roads and Maritime Services or the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator website.

Failure to comply with the driver fatigue rules is a criminal offence. You could be given a fine in excess of $10,000. You could also receive demerit points for certain offences.

The driver fatigue laws are quite complicated. If you are unsure of anything, it is best to seek assistance. Our lawyers at Armstrong Legal have unique experience in Heavy Vehicle law (including an ex-RMS prosecutor) and can answer your questions.

About the Author

Sarah has a strong drive to use her legal knowledge to help people in times of difficulty. Her goal is to not only achieve the best legal result, but to also ensure that her clients understand each step, and what is required from them to achieve the best results. With her friendly manner she strives to ensure that he client's mind is at ease throughout the process.

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