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Are you keeping on top of the tachograph?

By Holly Dempster October 25, 2022

Any business owner or fleet manager that operates with HGVs will be familiar with the tachograph. It is an integral part of the running of a heavy fleet. But it is much more than a simple chore or internal box-ticking exercise.

The tachograph is of enormous importance beyond the walls of any organisation. Failing to adequately manage driving time and rest periods or record vehicle and driver data can have severe consequences.

Fines for non-compliance are commonplace in the haulage industry, and in some cases operators even face prosecution. Yet despite these considerable consequences, many fleets are still struggling to meet their responsibilities. Fleet managers report errors in driver data along with common mistakes that take time and resources to fix.

In the modern business environment, with all the technology we have at our disposal, this should not be the case. Compliance should be as simple as scheduling and dispatch – and with the right tools and processes, it can be.

Understanding tachograph responsibilities

Keeping on top of the tachograph starts by understanding compliance legislation and responsibilities. These can be primarily grouped into two categories – driver responsibilities and operator responsibilities.

As the operator of a heavy fleet, it is up to you to ensure that tachographs are correctly installed, calibrated and inspected. You should also ensure that drivers are aware of all rules that apply to them and their vehicles.

HGV fleet operators must also:

  • Ensure tachograph charts meet EU regulations
  • Schedule all routes in line with EU driver hours and rest period rules
  • Download driver card data at least every 28 days
  • Download all vehicle unit data at least every 56 days
  • Take reasonable steps to prevent any falsifying or loss of records

On top of this, it is also up to your drivers to make sure that:  

  • The tachograph is correctly set to record their activities
  • The driver card is correctly installed at the start of every shift
  • All work is recorded – rest, breaks, other work etc.

Educating your drivers on common mistakes and how they can make the process much more time-consuming is also a good idea. Everything from forgetting to correctly block out breaks to incorrectly recording work can have significant consequences on efficiency and compliance.

When everyone in your organisation fully understands what is expected of them, managing the tachograph becomes less of a chore and more of a habit. And when you add digital tacho technology into the mix, meeting compliance responsibilities can be quick and easy.

How to get tachograph transparency

Digital tachograph technology can help you turn an obligation into a powerful tool. With a digital solution, you can schedule data downloads automatically and remotely, so compliance doesn’t have to get in the way of efficiency.

Integrating your digital tacho solution with GPS fleet management technology also allows you to see live tachograph status and driver information in near real-time.

This level of transparency allows you to make proactive decisions regarding driver rests and breaks, and with alerts when breaks are imminent or overdue, you can essentially streamline compliance, too.

Digital tachograph from Verizon Connect

The tachograph may be compulsory, but it doesn’t have to be complicated.

With near real-time data to hand, compliance can be easy, potentially saving valuable hours that could be spent on more business-critical tasks. By minimising the manual part of the process, a digital tachograph solution can help to improve the accuracy of records, reduce human error and support faster and better-informed decisions.

Verizon Connect’s digital tachograph and fleet management solutions can help you:

  • Keep vehicles moving  – download data remotely without requiring access to the cab.
  • See the bigger picture – View driver hours information alongside fleet data such as location, speed, start/finish time, route, and more.
  • Dig into the details – View driving time, speed, distance and rest periods in just a few clicks.

Want to know more? Visit our solutions pages to read more about how digital tachograph and fleet tracking can help your business. Or, if you’re ready to see the solution in action, book a free demo today.

Holly Dempster

Holly is the Marketing Specialist for UK & Ireland, Verizon Connect. With 5 years' experience in the IT Sector and a Journalism degree, her passion lies in the power of content. Holly's focus areas to date include, Digital, Channel and Consultative Marketing.

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