Notification of temporary derogation from driving and rest times pursuant to Art. 14(1) of Regulation 561/2006 by Sweden April 15th–May 31st

In response to the extraordinary crisis situation due to the pandemic of COVID-19 (Coronavirus), Sweden have adopted a temporary and limited relaxation of the driving times and rest periods for the drivers of vehicles transporting all types of goods and transport of passengers.

It is necessary to extend the derogation to all types of transports since it is a high probability that there will be a shortage of drivers during the excepted period due to sick leave, care of children etc.

The Public Health Agency of Sweden estimates that the peak of infected has not yet been reached, which also suggests that a broader exception is needed. It is essential to have a functional transport sector during this time, both for the transport of goods and persons, the latter in order to facilitate the needs to transport essential personal to and from work.

This temporary relaxation applies from 2020-04-15 until 2020-05-31. It will apply to all drivers, irrespective of their nationality, when operating in Sweden.

Sweden has made it clear that working conditions of drivers and road safety must not be compromised. Drivers should not be expected to drive whilst tired - employers remain responsible for the health and safety of their employees and other road users.

For the above-mentioned category of drivers, the following provisions will be temporarily relaxed as follows:

  • Derogation to Article 6(1) of Regulation 561/2006: replacement of the maximum daily driving limit of 9 hours with one of 11 hours;
  • Derogation to Article 6(2) of Regulation 561/2006: replacement of the maximum weekly driving limit of 56 hours with one of 60 hours;
  • Derogation to Article 6(3) of Regulation 561/2006: replacement of the maximum fortnightly driving limit of 90 hours with one of 120 hours
  • No derogation to Article 7 of Regulation 561/2006
  • Derogation to Article 8(1) of Regulation 561/2006: reduction of the regular daily rest requirements from 11 to 9 hours;
  • Derogation to Article 8(6) of Regulation 561/2006: in any two consecutive weeks a driver shall take at least one regular weekly rest period and one reduced weekly rest period of at least 24 hours. However; the reduction does not need to be compensated.
  • Derogation to Article 8(8) of Regulation 561/2006: possibility for the driver to take the regular weekly rest shorter than 45 hours in the vehicle, as long as it has suitable sleeping facilities for each driver and the vehicle is stationary.

The temporary relaxation of the rules described above reflects the exceptional circumstances stemming from the COVID-19 outbreak. Sweden wishes to emphasise that, as a general rule, we expect business to plan for and manage the risks of disruption to supply chains.

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