Many employers ask drivers to spend their weekly rest periods in the cabs of their vehicles despite this being in breach of the EU’s driving and rest rules set out in EC Regulation 561/2006 regarding drivers’ hours and tachographs.
This practice came under scrutiny recently when one of the EU's senior judges at the EU's Court of Justice (CJEU) agreed with the European Transport Workers Federation (ETF) who point out that non-resident professional drivers are the main victims of this practice.
Advocate General Evgeni Tanchev was providing a legal opinion in a case brought by Belgium, Vaditrans v Belgium. The claim by Belgium stated that the terms of EC Regulation 561/2006 meant that the regular weekly rest periods referred to in that regulation must not be spent inside the vehicle.
The Advocate Generals legal opinion will now be taken into consideration by the CJEU when it gives it's final ruling later this year. Although The Court is not bound to follow the opinion of the Advocate General in the majority of cases it will do so.