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European Commission continues tachograph regulations review

  • 17 January 2014
  • By Justin Stanton

In December, the final stage in the legislative process to amend tachograph regulation (EC) NO 561/2006 and to repeal (EEC) 3821/85 was announced, ready for the European Commission to adopt early in 2014, writes Tachodisc MD Karen Crispe.

At this pre-Christmas meeting, further clarification was given on some of the proposals, which we’ve summarised here along with the timetable.


  • New regulation to be adopted early 2014
  • Technical specifications for the new smart digital tachograph to be drafted by the end 2014 (deletion or/and implementation actions)
  • Technology to be endorsed and adopted by the end 2015
  • Introduction of new smart digital tachographs – 2018

Summary of the updates as at December 2013
Integrating GPS with the digital tachograph: integrating a Global Positioning System (GPS) with the digital tachograph is intended to capture data for at least the start and end of the working periods, and after three hours of accumulated driving time.

Roadside interrogation of the tachograph: wireless communication based on Dedicated Short Range Communication (DSRC) should be made a standard with control officers for the purpose of targeted roadside checks; but the equipment for enforcement officers will not be mandatory for 15 years following the introduction of the new tachograph. It is important to emphasise that this will not be a full download of a VU or a drivers’ card. Its purpose is more basic and will check that the tachograph understands that the vehicle is moving or a drivers’ card is inserted.

Proposed security improvements on drivers’ card and VU: security improvements are being proposed on drivers’ card and the VU. Because of these improvements, new versions of drivers cards will start to be used in 2017, but they will look identical. The new cards will work in current and new tachographs.

Vehicle weight information: there are three main ways to commit fraud, Overspeed, Overdrive, and Overload. As a result, more discussions will be held about the weight information stored in the tachograph.

Merging of Cards: the idea of merging the driver card and licence card is still under debate. A further study is being carried out, but not all EU members are on board with this.

Exemption Extension: non-professional drivers, who use their vehicles for carrying materials or equipment needed for their work, will be exempted from the use of tachographs within a radius of 100km from the base of their undertaking, provided the vehicle’s weight does not exceed 7.5 tonnes.

M1N1 (Range Rover, Land Rover, Toyota Hilux, pickups etc): the Commission will consider extending the period of validity of the adaptor for M1 and N1 vehicles until 2015 and give further consideration to a long-term solution for M1 and N1 vehicles before 2015.

Field Testing: the Commission will allow field tests of tachographs that have not yet been type approved to be tested in real life situations

Electronic Register: in order to ensure more effective scrutiny and control of driver cards, and to facilitate the tasks of control officers, national electronic registers should be established, and provision should be made for the interconnection of those registers. In effect, this will mean more cross border cooperation for enforcement authorities to help stop fraud.

To support this latest legislative summary, more detailed information on the final proposals can be found in Tachodisc’s White Paper titled ‘Change is on the Cards’ (vs. 2 August 2013), which is available to download.

In the next month’s Compliance Newsletter (February 2014), Tachodisc will also provide an update on the EU’s proposals for Roadside Enforcement.

  • For further information contact Tachodisc.
  • Commercial Motor’s Compliance and Best Practice Bulletin is sponsored by Tachodisc. To sign up to receive the monthly bulletin, go to the Compliance homepage.


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