Thursday 20 January 2022

European haulage rule changes on the way

Due to changes brought about by Brexit, certain goods transport journeys made in Europe by UK operators – whether in HGVs, vans or cars towing trailers – will need to be registered via an online service from 2 February.

The rules will apply in EU member states, as well as Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein. Journeys which involve the transportation of goods for commercial purposes between two points that are both within any of these countries – i.e. where goods are loaded at one such point and unloaded at another – will need to be registered.

Registering the journey is also known as a ‘postings declaration’, and from 2 February, drivers must carry digital or physical copies of the information registered.

The online service to be used for the process is currently being developed by the EU. Required information will include an operator licence number (if applicable), details of drivers and a transport manager or another UK contact, dates of drivers’ recent employment contracts or agency contracts, estimated journey start and end dates, and number plates of the vehicle and trailer.

From 21 May, further changes affect UK-based operators who transport goods with vans with a maximum authorised mass of over 2.5 tonnes up to 3.5 tonnes, and cars or vans with trailers with a gross train weight of the same.

From this date such oper-ators will require a standard international goods vehicle operator licence to transport goods in the aforementioned countries, as well as Switzerland, unless transporting on a non-commercial basis. Existing operator licence holders can add such vehicles to their current licences.

Full details of both forthcoming changes can be found on the gov.uk website.

DfT says the guidance will be updated when further details are available, and offers a facility on its website to sign up for email alerts when changes occur.

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