Road Transport Directive

Please note these rules are not the Drivers Hours Rules

The Road Transport directive is commonly known as the Working Time Directive and these are a different set of rules, which all HGV and PCV drivers must adhere to at the same time as the Drivers Hours Rules.
What is the weekly maximum?

The total number of hours worked cannot exceed 60 hours within any fixed week.

What is the maximum weekly average?

Over the WTD period, usually 17 or 26 weeks, you must average no more than 48 hours per week.

I.e. Your hours should be monitored each week for 17 weeks. At which point you add them all together and divide the total by the amount of weeks within the period. This result must be no more than 48 hours.

What are the daily driving limits?

You cannot work for more than 6 accumulative hours without a break. As defined by the Drivers hour’s laws, a break must be at least 15 minutes in length in order to qualify as a break.

If you are to work between 6 – 9 hours, then you must accumulate 30 minutes of break across your shift.

You can do this by taking periods of breaks at least 15 minutes in length or a full 30 minutes of break all at once. Just remember to not work more than 6 consecutive hours without a break of at least 15 minutes.

If you continue to work up until you exceed 9 hours of WTD, then you must take a further 15 minute break. So 45 minutes of break across the shift in total. Again, this can be taken in periods of at least 15 minutes or more, or all at once provided you do not breach other regulations.

You can take this additional break at any time throughout the day once your duty has begun, and it may also be included on the end of another break, but it must be no later than after 9 hours of total WTD.

Note – Please note that your required 45 minute break to comply with driver’s hour’s law can be used as the same break to satisfy the WTD rules.

What happens with sick days and holidays?

For the purposes of calculating your WTD, any single days of holiday you take will be recorded as 8 hours of work. If you take 5 consecutive days of holiday, then a full week is recorded as being 48 hours. Any Holidays which you take beyond your contracted entitlement (usually 20 days) will be recorded as rest days and do not add any hours for your WTD

Sick days are calculated exactly the same as regular holidays and add 8 hours for a single day, or 48 hours for 5 consecutive days.

Bank Holidays are free days which do not count towards you working time directive. This is of course void if you work at all during the bank holiday.
Yard Work/Office Work and Training – If you spend entire days of work in an office or in the yard. These hours will be towards your working time directive as normal. You would be expected to do this with a logbook or time sheets.

Also, if you attend any training which in mandatory, this will also count towards your WTD. This does not include training which you do as part of your personal lifestyle or in your free time.

Note –  Some Drivers have completed their Driver CPC Training in their own time and therefore this has not counted towards their Working Time.

Derogations of the Working Time Directive

There are certain derogations in place which results in some driver not being required to monitor their WTD. This is where an individual would not drive more than 10 times within a WTD period 26 weeks or less.

If a WTD period of more than 26 weeks is being used, then you can drive up to 15 times before having to monitor you WTD.

Note – However, this does not mean you are exempt from the daily WTD rules, and you must still take your breaks where required.


The detailed version of these rules can be found on pages 17 and 38 in the VOSA manual


For a comprehensive explanation of the Road Transport Directive and how it works alongside the Drivers hours rules get the Drivers Hours Handbook which fully explains all the rules with real working examples.