Driver fined almost €2,000 after police officers in Norway determined his weekend visits to a truckwash were a violation of drivers’ hours rules.
The fine was issued back in August 2021, but only recently came to light when the truck driver who received the penalty was interviewed by Norwegian road transport website Tungt.no.
The driver says he is passionate about his profession, and that washing his vehicle is something he often does when he has time off on the weekends. However, the road transport inspector who checked his tachograph maintains that all maintenance on the truck, including washing, should be classed as other work.
The inspectors checked the trucker’s vehicle and tachograph after he had washed his vehicle on two weekends in August, one of which was to prepare the HGV for a truck fair. To do so, he needed to move the vehicle from the position it was parked up for the weekend. In the process of doing this, washing the truck and return to his original spot, the driver’s card was not inside his tachograph.
The police determined this as a breach of the rules, and besides issuing the a fine of 20,000 NOK (around €1,971), ordered the lorry driver to rest for 48 hours.
The officers justify their actions on the basis that the lorry had been moved a total of four times (twice every weekend) without the card being in the tachograph and without any other work being registered.
The trucker who was punished by the police nonetheless thinks the decision borders on madness and will only serve to put more people off the profession.
The lorry driver’s employer, Kaasa Transport, is also unimpressed by the authorities and is willing to go to court to defend the driver. It says that had the driver told officers he was on his way home, he wouldn’t have been fined. Therefore, in the opinion of the haulage company, he was simply punished for his honesty. The Norwegian Public Roads Administration’s external control group were asked to comment on the matter. Their spokesperson told Tungt.no that “the regulations for driving and rest time are strict and that the inspectors today have little room for maneuver.”