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The Rules on HGV Driver Hours

A lot of people know that there are strict rules on HGV driver hours but they may not be aware of what those rules are. In this article, we will discuss the rules and regulations relating to hours for an HGV driver. The hours HGV drivers do are split up to ensure drivers can remain fully focused. You’ll read about maximum driving hours, breaks and rest periods as well as uninterrupted periods of breaks and rests, regular daily rest period and more.

We’ll also look at how these can affect the trucking industry in general as well as individuals working within it and the breaks and rests which are required by law. L&T Transport offers HGV driver training in Yorkshire.

So, how many hours can an HGV driver work?

Driving Rules for UK and EU Drivers

Below are the current rules on HGV driver’s hours. We have listed the average working time as well as the maximum working hours.

Drivers are only allowed to be driving for a maximum of 9 hours a day. However, two days a week, this can be increased to 10 hours a day.

Drivers are only permitted to drive for 4.5 hours before taking a break, which is required by law, to be a 45-minute break.

Drivers can do 4.5 hours of driving all in one go or they can make up the time in shorter blocks.

There is a maximum of 56 hours of driving per week. As well as this, over a fortnight, a two-week period, there is a limit of 90 hours of driving.

hgv driver hours

Rest Periods

There are a certain amount of breaks allowed during HGV drivers’ hours. There is a weekly rest period and certain times when you need to take a break following the drivers’ hours rules.

There are many different ways HGV drivers can take their daily rest periods HGV drivers need a daily rest period of 11 hours. If this is taken in two periods, the first break needs to be uninterrupted for 3 hours and the second one must be an uninterrupted rest of 9 hours which comes to a total of 12 hours.

If entitled to, a driver can reduce their daily rest period to a minimum of 9 hours which needs to be uninterrupted. However, they can only do this three times a week. This is known as a reduced daily rest period. Any rest period under 11 hours and over 9 hours is known as a reduced rest period.

Drivers can rest for 45 hours a week which can be reduced to 24 hours, provided that one full rest is taken in a fortnight. Between weekly rests, there should be no more than six consecutive 24-hour periods.

To summarise the rest periods of an HGV driver, if they start work at 9 am on day 1, then by 9 am on day 2 they must have taken one of the following

  • A regular daily rest of 11 hours uninterrupted
  • A split daily rest period of 12 hours is taken in two parts. 3 hours and then 9 hours, both uninterrupted
  • A reduced daily rest, only if allowed, for a minimum of nine hours but shorter than 11 hours, uninterrupted.


There are many rules and regulations that HGV drivers need to abide by in order to keep themselves and other road users safe. It is important for everyone to be aware of these so that we can all share the roads safely.

To stay up to date with these rules it’s important to follow government guidance. At L&T Transport, we offer HGV driver training in Yorkshire so that our drivers are up-to-date with the latest legislation and best practice. Contact us today to find out more.

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About L&T Transport Training Services

Formed in 1986 and a family owned and operated business, L&T provides instruction for anyone wishing to drive a vehicle from C1 (7.5T) to CE (artic) and D1 (Minibus) to D (Coach).

We also train drivers in the transportation of dangerous goods (ADR) and the operation of HIAB plant, Forklift and we are a JAUPT Approved Centre for Driver CPC Periodic Training.

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