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Fahrtenschreiber / Tachograph

A tachograph is a calibrated device for measuring and controlling the speed, the distance traveled and the driving and rest time of a car. This is why the tachograph can be seen as a mechanical or electronic driver’s logbook.

Your trailer and the driver’s logbook

Many cars with trailers in commercial use require a controlling device for the documentation of the driving and rest times. It basically counts when the trailer is used for the transportation of goods and the permissible total weight is higher than 3500 kg. This can be checked by simply adding the numbers on the vehicle documents.

The owner of the trailer has to get the functionality checked regularly at their own charge.

Since 2013 transporters require a digital tachograph if distances of more than 100 kilometres are traveled on a regular basis. For vehicles with a permissible total weight between 2 and 3.5 tons a tachograph is not obligatory. However, if the trailer does have a tachograph, it has to be used. Analogue tachographs with a tachometric disc are still partly allowed.

The tachograph obligation counts for

  • vehicles with a permissible total weight of more than 3.5 tons
  • busses with more than eight passenger seats
  • cars with tailers with a permissible total weight of more than 3.5 tons

Cards for the digital tachograph

  • driver’s card: every driver gets one, the responsible driving licence office provides the cards.
  • company card: every business is obligated to copy the trip data regularly (at least all four weeks) onto its card and to save them for at least two years.
  • garage card: The repair show responsible for maintaining and checking gets an own card on which several technical information are saved. The controlling device can only be calibrated and checked in this particular repair shop.
  • control card: This card has to be given to the police officer in a traffic control. It is for example necessary for checking the driving and rest times.

Regulations for the data to be recorded

There are analogue and digital tachographs. The driving and rest times are automatically recorded by a digital controlling device. These datas matter:

  • driving time per day (must not be higher than 9 hours a day)
  • driving time per week (must not be higher than 56 hours a week)
  • stops (normally obligatory after 4.5 hours for 45 minutes)
  • daily rest time (should be at least 11 hours a day)
  • weekly rest time (should be at least 45 hours a week)