The Split Rest Break

Another issue in all States except Victoria and WA is the split break. Under the HVNL, if you had to move the truck even a short way after commencing your seven continuous hour break, let’s say two hours after starting your break, you would have to record at least 15 minutes work time and then continue your rest time with the latter part of you rest break being six continuous hours (as per the HVNL). Cumulatively, your break then becomes eight hours. However if you were required to move the truck after three hours rest, the total break time would amount to nine hours off the road. The worse case scenario would be that if you are woken up to move the truck at the 5 hour mark. In this case you are off the road for 11 hours.

This effectively reduces that day’s work and drive time to13 hours and shows how important it can be when planning and scheduling trips. A safe driving plan and scheduled trip which is time critical is not going to work if there is any possibility of the driver being required to split his break.

On the other hand there are situations where the split break can work for you. For example, you stop work to have your seven continuous hours of stationary rest time, but after two hours you find that you can’t sleep. You then decide to drive on for another two hours and have a further six continuous hours of stationary rest time somewhere else. You have now fulfilled the requirement for a total of eight hours split rest break and are able to show that in your diary.

By the way for you to be able to use the split break provision you must not have had a split rest break in the previous 24 hour period. In other words, the split break scenario can only be used once every 48 hours.

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