If you’re an HGV driver that transports goods, then depending on the company you work for there’s a high chance that you may have to make an international trip at some point in your career – in 2021 alone, 2.4 million tonnes of goods were exported from the UK by HGVs.
Of course, if you are transporting goods to another country for work, then there are certain rules and regulations that must be followed. Read on below as we give our tips on the essential things to remember before undertaking an international haulage trip.
Carry the Necessary Documents with You
One of the most essential things to remember to take with you when making an international haulage journey is any and all necessary documents that are required of you. This will include:
- A valid passport
- A valid UK driving licence
- Your Driver Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC)
- Healthcare documents (e.g. EHIC/GHIC cards, insurance cover documents etc.)
If you are travelling to a country outside of the EU, then you may also need to carry a VISA and/or an international driving permit (IDP). In some countries, you will also need to carry a ‘green card’ as proof of insurance cover for the vehicle you’re driving (more information regarding this can be found here).
Comply with FTA Rules on Drivers’ Hours
Just as you will be familiar with using your tachograph card and complying with domestic rules on drivers’ hours in the UK, you must also familiarise yourself with and adhere to the UK-EU Free Trade Agreement (FTA) rules on drivers’ hours and tachograph if you’re driving a HGV vehicle within the EU.
As such, you must also remember to keep your tachograph charts, manual records and driver’s digital smart card (if you have one) with you at all times when driving your HGV abroad.
Check Cabotage Rules
As a UK haulier, you can carry out a limited number of cabotage and cross-trade jobs in an EU country – these must follow a journey where you have transported goods from the UK. If you plan on doing so, then you must follow the cabotage and cross-trade rules, which stipulate that you can carry out up to two haulage jobs within the EU after dropping off goods from the UK (only one of which can be cabotage).
You must also declare that you will be doing a cabotage or cross-trade job, and must carry the necessary documentation with you required for these.
If you work for or own a UK haulage company that has a fleet of HGVs, then it is important that these are regularly maintained and serviced to ensure that they adhere to regulations and to minimise business downtime.
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