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Fatigue Management: Work and Rest Requirements

Fatigue Management: Work and Rest Requirement

Generally, all drivers of fatigue-regulated heavy vehicles must comply with certain maximum work and minimum rest periods. Parties involved in the supply chain must take acceptable procedures in preventing drivers to exceed these set limits. This is similar to occupational health and safety laws that means all drivers must be allowed to stop if they are to go beyond the limits and make alternative arrangements.

The Heavy Vehicle National Law has set three work and rest conditions:

  1. Standard Hours

    These are the work and rest hours that are allowed in the HVNL for all drivers who are not operating under National Vehicle Accreditation Scheme accreditation or an exemption. Standard hours are the maximum amount of work and minimum amount of rest possible without the need of additional safety countermeasures.Standard Hours – Work and Rest Requirements – for solo drivers

 

Time Work Rest
In any period of… A driver must not work for more than a maximum  of… And must have the rest of that period off work with at least a minimum rest break of…
5 ½ hours 5 ¼ hours work time 15 continuous minutes rest time
8 hours 7 ½ hours work time 30 minutes rest time in blocks of 15 continuous minutes
11 hours 10 hours work time 60 minutes rest time in blocks of 15 continuous minutes
24 hours 12 hours work time 7 continuous hours stationary rest time*
7 days 72 hours work time 24 continuous hours stationary rest time
14 days 144 hours work time 2 x night rest breaks# and 2 x night rest breaks taken on consecutive days

*Stationary rest time is the time a driver spends out of a heavy vehicle or in an approved sleeper berth of a stationary heavy vehicle.  #Night rest breaks are 7 continuous hours stationary rest time taken between the hours of 10pm on a day and 8am on the next day (using the time zone of the base of the driver) or a 24 continuous hours stationary rest break.

 

The below table applies to solo drivers in the bus and coach sector only.

Time Work Rest
In any period of… A driver must not work for more than a maximum of… And must have the rest of that period off work with at least a minimum rest break of…
5 1/2 hours 5 1/4 hours work time 15 continuous minutes rest time
8 hours 7 1/2 hours work time 30 minutes rest time in blocks of 15 continuous minutes
11 hours 10 hours work time 60 minutes rest time in blocks of 15 continuous minutes
24 hours 12 hours work time 7 continuous hours stationary rest time*
7 days 6 x night rest breaks#
28 days 288 hours work time 4 x 24 hours continuous hours stationary rest time

*Stationary rest time is the time a driver spends out of a heavy vehicle or in an approved sleeper berth of a stationary heavy vehicle. #Night rest breaks are 7 continuous hours stationary rest time taken between the hours of 10pm on a day and 8am on the next day (using the time zone of the base of the driver) or a 24 continuous hours stationary rest break.

The below table applies to two-up drivers.

Time Work Rest
In any period of… A driver must not work for more than a maximum of… And must have the rest of that period off work with at least a minimum rest break of…
5 1/2 hours 5 1/4 hours work time 15 continuous minutes rest time
8 hours 7 1/2 hours work time 30 minutes rest time in blocks of 15 continuous minutes
11 hours 10 hours work time 60 minutes rest time in blocks of 15 continuous minutes
24 hours 12 hours work time 5 continuous hours stationary rest time* or 5 hours continuous rest time in an approved sleeper berth while the vehicle   is moving
52 hours 10 continuous hours stationary rest time
7 days 60 hours work time 24 continuous hours stationary rest time and 24 hours stationary rest time in blocks of at least 7 continuous hours of stationary rest time
14 days 120 hours work time 2 x night rest breaks#and 2 x night rest breaks taken on consecutive days

*Stationary rest time is the time a driver spends out of a heavy vehicle or in an approved sleeper berth of a stationary heavy vehicle.#Night rest breaks are 7 continuous hours stationary rest time taken between the hours of 10pm on a day and 8am on the next day (using the time zone of the base of the driver) or a 24 continuous hours stationary rest break.

 

  1. Basic Fatigue Management

    Drivers that are operating under NHVAS with Basic Fatigue Management accreditation can work under more flexible work and rest hours. This allows drivers to work up to 14 hours in a 24-hour period. Basic Fatigue Management gives operators greater say when drivers can work and rest given that the risks of driver fatigue is properly managed.

 

The below table applies to solo drivers.

Time Work Rest
In any period of… A driver must not work for more than a maximum of… And must have the rest of that period off work with at least a minimum rest break of…
6 ¼ hours 6 hours work time 15 continuous minutes rest time
9 hours 8 1/2 hours work time 30 minutes rest time in blocks of 15 continuous minutes
12 hours 11 hours work time 60 minutes rest time in blocks of 15 continuous minutes
24 hours 14 hours work time 7 continuous hours stationary rest time*
7 days 36 hours long/night work time** No limit has been set
14 days 144 hours work time 24 continuous hours stationary rest time taken after no more than 84 hours work time and 24 continuous hours stationary rest time and 2 x night rest breaks# and 2 x night rest breaks taken on consecutive days.

*Stationary rest time is the time a driver spends out of a regulated heavy vehicle or in an approved sleeper berth of a stationary regulated heavy vehicle.
**Long/night work time is any work time in excess of 12 hours in a 24 hour period or any work time between midnight and 6 am (or the equivalent hours in the time zone of the base of a driver).
#Night rest breaks are 7 continuous hours stationary rest time taken between the hours of 10pm on a day and 8am on the next day (using the time zone of the base of the driver) or a 24 continuous hours stationary rest break.

Download the BFM daily work and rest hours planner for solo drivers.

The below table applies to two-up drivers.

Time Work Rest
In any period of… A driver must not work for more than a maximum of… And must have the rest of that period off work with at least a minimum rest break of…
24 hours 14 hours work time  No limit has been set
82 hours  No limit has been set 10 continuous hours stationary rest time
7 days 70 hours work time 24 continuous hours stationary rest time and 24 hours stationary rest time in blocks of at least 7 continuous hours of stationary rest time
14 days 140 hours work time 4 night rest breaks#

*Stationary rest time is the time a driver spends out of a regulated heavy vehicle or in an approved sleeper berth of a stationary regulated heavy vehicle.
#Night rest breaks are 7 continuous hours stationary rest time taken between the hours of 10pm on a day and 8am on the next day (using the time zone of the base of the driver) or a 24 continuous hours stationary rest break.

BFM Standards

There are six fatigue management standards that you need to comply with for BFM.

  1. Scheduling and rostering – scheduling of individual trips and rostering of drivers are to be in accordance with limits prescribed in legislation
  1. Fitness for duty – drivers are in a fit state to safely perform required duties and meet the specified medical requirements
  1. Fatigue knowledge and awareness – personnel involved in the management, operation, administration, participation and verification of the BFM option can demonstrate competency in fatigue knowledge relevant to their position on the causes, effects and management of fatigue and the operator’s fatigue management system
  1. Responsibilities – the authorisations, responsibilities and duties of all positions involved in the management, operation, administration, participation and verification of their operations under the BFM option are current, clearly defined, documented and carried out accordingly
  1. Internal review – an internal review system is implemented to identify non-compliances and verify that the activities comply with the BFM standards and the operator’s fatigue management system
  1. Records and documentation – the operator will implement, authorise, maintain and review documented policies and procedures that ensure the management, performance and verification of the BFM option in accordance with the standards.

 

  1. Advanced Fatigue Management

    To those who are operating under NHVAS with Advanced Fatigue Management accreditation adopts a genuine risk management approach in managing heavy vehicle driver fatigue. Instead of prescribing work and rest hours, Advanced Fatigue Management offers more flexibility than hours of Basic Fatigue Management in return, the operator demonstrates a greater accountability in managing their drivers’ risks caused by fatigue.

Risk Classification System

The NHVR assesses proposed AFM work and rest arrangements under a Risk Classification System (RCS). RCS helps review the levels of fatigue risk that is associated with combinations of work, sleep and rest. RCS is based on fatigue science and research. With it, it enables operators to submit work schedules with higher risk potentials (such as longer or frequent shifts) that are eased by offsetting key fatigue management principles (for example, increased work related breaks). The Risk Classification System Tool is utilised by the NHVR when assessing an AFM application and gives transparency on application decisions.

How the AFM Application Process and RCS Work

Applicants for AFM will determine their fatigue risk profile for common work schedules against a preset fatigue management principles.

A risk potential rank from baseline to high is set for each principle. By using the Risk Classification tool, you can see the risk potential ranking for any particular work schedule and can come up for a profile for your entire schedule. This information should be used in deciding what available countermeasures are there in your fatigue management system. The fatigue management system also must comply with the 10 AFM standards and must contain countermeasures to safely manage the fatigue risks.

If you are to propose multiple high or medium risk potentials, you may have to prepare a safety case that portrays how the fatigue risks are managed by the business practices as described in your fatigue management system. There is also an open option to amend your work tasks in case that work circumstances change.

Seven Fatigue Principles

The prinicples are grouped into 3 main categories:

  1. Work-related rest breaks
a. Reduce the time spent continuously working in the work opportunity
b. The more frequent the rest breaks away from driving, the better
  1. Recovery breaks
c. Ensuring adequate sleep opportunity in order to obtain sufficient sleep
d. Maximise adequate night sleep
e. Minimise shifts ending between 00:00 – 06:00
f. Minimise extended shifts
  1. Reset breaks (such as long periods of rest or extended leave)
g. Prevent accumulation of fatigue with reset breaks of at least 30 hours (and include two nigh periods, 00:00 – 06:00) between work sequences

 

Ten AFM Standards

There are ten fatigue management standards that you need to comply with for AFM.

  1. Scheduling and rostering – scheduling of trips and rostering of drivers must incorporate fatigue management measures.
  1. Readiness for duty – drivers are in a fit state to safely perform required duties.
  1. Fatigue knowledge and awareness – all personnel involved in the management, operation, administration, participation and verification of the AFM option can demonstrate competency in fatigue knowledge relevant to their position on the causes, effects and management of fatigue and the operator’s fatigue management system.
  1. Responsibilities – the authorisations, responsibilities and duties of all positions involved in the management, operation, administration, participation and verification of their operations under the AFM option are current, clearly defined and documented and carried out accordingly.
  1. Internal review – an internal review system is implemented to identify non-compliances and verify that the activities comply with the AFM Standards and the operator’s fatigue management system.
  1. Records and documentation – the operator will implement, authorise, maintain and review documented policies and procedures that ensure the effective management, performance and verification of the AFM option in accordance with the standards. Records that demonstrated the compliant operation of the AFM option are collected, stored and maintained to verify compliance.
  1. Health – drivers are to participate in a health management system to identify and manage fatigue risks.
  1. Workplace conditions – workplace environments and conditions must assist in the prevention of fatigue.
  1. Management practices – management practices are to minimise the risks relating to driver fatigue.
  1. Operating limits – operating limits will provide drivers and operators with the flexibility to effectively manage fatigue.

 

Pre-existing AFM accreditation

Operators who had pre-existing AFM accreditation on 10 February 2014 (prior to implementation of the RCS) are not required to re-apply for AFM until their current approval ends. At this time, operators will be able to transition their accreditation to the RCS.

If an operator’s previous AFM system is considered incompatible with the RCS, they can elect to have their current AFM system reapproved, if they agree to work with the NHVR to transition their current system to work under the RCS.

Transport ministers have set a timeframe for this transition period. AFM accreditation approved under this arrangement will end on the 31 December 2015. The NHVR is committed to working through all issues so that current AFM participants have a smooth transition to the new arrangements, and has begun working closely with those affected.

 

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