Drivers whose digital tachograph cards have expired, or have malfunctioned, been stolen or been lost, and who have not yet received a replacement card because of postal delays, may continue to carry out domestic journeys providing that they keep manual records of their activities, the Department for Transport (DfT) has said.
A letter to stakeholders from DfT Divisional Manager, Road Freight Regulation Duncan Price on 22 December 2022 notes that DVSA will not take enforcement action against drivers in those cases. That is contingent upon the driver providing evidence of having made an application for a replacement tachograph card in sufficient time.
“In the case of a malfunctioning driver card, DVSA enforcement officers would expect to see proof of postage for the malfunctioning card and accompanying application form for a replacement,” states Mr Price. “In all other cases, we recommend using the online system, which will provide the driver with an email confirmation of their application.”
While DVSA staff will not take enforcement action in the above scenarios, Mr Price adds that DfT advises against international journeys for any driver that is without a valid digital tachograph card. Additionally, the approach taken by police officers is outside the DfT relaxation.
“The police also have the power to enforce the regulations relating to driver tachograph cards. Police enforcement policy and practice is a matter for police forces and their officers,” Mr Price notes.
DVLA is required to issue renewal driver digital tachograph cards before the previous card’s expiry date providing that the application is made no later than 15 working days before that. Where cards have malfunctioned or been lost or stolen, DVLA must issue a replacement within eight working days providing that it has been notified within seven calendar days of the card becoming lost, stolen or defective.
There is no suggestion that the temporary relaxation to enforcement policy relates to any delays in DVLA issuing new cards.