Are You Going to Use an EWD?

The question many truck owners and truck drivers are asking themselves is, are you going to use an EWD? Electronic Work Diaries are about to become a reality as the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator releases the draft Electronic Work Diary (EWD) Compliance Policy ensuring that heavy vehicle drivers using either electronic or written work diaries are treated the same.

 

Are You Going to Use an EWD?

 

“The policy outlines the NHVR’s requirements for meeting record keeping laws whether you utilise the technology or use traditional Written Work Diaries (WWDs),” said Geoff Casey, NHVR Safety and Productivity Executive Director. “For example, EWDs will record and show work and rest time to the nearest minute, unlike WWDs which use blocks of 15 minutes. This will be a benefit to many drivers who will no longer have to round down rest time, or round up work time, to the nearest 15 minute block.

 

“The EWD Compliance Policy will also make it clear that while an EWD must alert drivers of an approaching work or rest deadline, potential minor breaches of less than 15 minutes will not appear as a breach in the EWD Compliance View.

 

“Authorised officers who check EWDs will access the Compliance View of a driver’s work and rest times. Drivers will also have the ability to correct information prior to approving their work and rest times at the end of each work day.”

 

As EWDs may provide greater visibility of drivers’ records at the roadside, the NHVR said the requirements about recording and interpreting EWD information must be equivalent to a written diary in three key aspects

  • Drivers control their work and rest records entered into the EWD
  • Drivers can review and correct their information
  • Minor breaches of less than 15 minutes should not be sanctioned unless there is an immediate safety concern or a pattern of deliberate and repeated non-compliance.

 

Another aspect of the EWD is ensuring drivers will understand how to use them. As a result any approved systems must:

  • Guide drivers through information to be completed, step-by-step
  • Alert drivers to any impending breaches
  • Allow drivers to check the information before confirming the records for the day

 

Are You Going to Use an EWD?

 

Drivers must carry the previous 28 days’ work and rest records and give these records to their record keepers. All approved EWDs will automatically load drivers’ previous 28 days’ of work and rest records into the new EWD on login. Driver records are transmitted to the record keeper at least once per day. Drivers will be alerted about any communication issues that prevent this transmission.

 

In order to ensure the driver using an EWD is not worse off then a colleague using a written diary, the NHVR’s stated position on the use of EWD information is that drivers using EWDs should be treated fairly compared to users of a written diary. Requirements about recording and interpreting EWD information must be equivalent to a written record in three key aspects:

  • Drivers control their work and rest records entered into the EWD.
  • Drivers can review and correct their information.
  • Minor breaches of less than 15 minutes should not be sanctioned unless there is an immediate safety concern or a pattern of deliberate and repeated non-compliance.