Fatigue Management Tips


Managing fatigue, particularly within the heavy vehicle industry, is crucial to the success and safety of everyone involved.  The NHVR receives and answers thousands of questions from calls with drivers each year and we’ve included a few of the more common questions that may be of interest.

I work in a fatigue-regulated heavy vehicle on private property.  What rules do I have to follow?

All work performed in relation to a fatigue-regulated heavy vehicle is subject to the Heavy Vehicle National Law (HVNL), even if some of that work (for example, refuelling or unloading the vehicle) is performed on private property.

If work which would otherwise be subject to the HVNL is mostly or entirely performed on private property, an application may be made to the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR) for an exemption from its operation.

Drivers performing work within 100km of their driver base (whether on a private or public road), are not required to carry or complete a work diary for that work. However, the driver’s record-keeper still has obligations in relation to recording the work. Again, if the work is being performed mostly or entirely on private roads, an application may be made to the NHVR for an exemption from its operation.

I only work within a 100km of radius of my base.  Do I have to keep a work diary?

Under the HVNL, local area work is called 100km work.

A driver who is on a journey entirely within a 100km radius from their driver base, is not required by law to record activities in a work diary unless they are working under basic/advanced fatigue management accreditation (BFM/AFM) or an exemption.  Your employer is responsible for keeping these records, though you must provide them with relevant information to make records or make the records yourself if you cannot provide the information to your record keeper.

Drivers working within 100km radius of their base must still meet the maximum work and minimum rest requirements for their work and rest hour options.

Can I reset my 24-hour period by taking seven hours of rest?

Periods of 24 hours must be counted forward from the end of a ‘relevant major rest break’.   When applied to a 24-hour period a ‘relevant major rest break’ is the longest continuous rest break required for your hours option. You must start counting 24-hour periods from the end of that break.

You must count work and rest time for the whole 24-hour period following the end of a relevant major rest break. If you take another (subsequent) relevant major rest break during that 24-hour period, it does not reset the 24-hour period and you must continue counting work time for that 24- hour period after the break. You must count all work time before and after the subsequent relevant major rest break in that 24-hour period.

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