A very important topic, but not much discussed, is about the rights of truck drivers. First, as you may know, Brazilian truck drivers need to fulfill many requirements and obligations. Laws and regulations govern them, but they also have rights that are guaranteed by federal laws. However, not everyone knows these rights, which means that they are often not observed.
In search of ensuring compliance with the rights of truck drivers, many protests have been made by the category, as occurred in the strike of May 2018.
Instituted by Law 13,703, of August 8, 2018, the National Policy for Minimum Floors of Road Cargo Transport, popularly known as the freight table, formalizes the establishment of a table with minimum prices for the transportation of cargo.
The publication of the table, the definition of values, and inspection are the sole responsibility of the National Land Transport Agency (ANTT), taking into account the costs related to diesel oil and tolls.
Resolution No. 5,833, of November 9, 2018, establishes fines ranging from R $ 550 to R $ 10,500 for non-compliance with minimum freight prices. The agency is also responsible for monitoring compliance with this legislation.
Truck drivers who feel injured or pressured to fail to comply with federal law can file complaints through ANTT’s communication channels.
Established by Law No. 10,209, of March 23, 2001, the mandatory Toll Ticket was created with the main objective of allowing the exemption of the carrier from paying tolls, one of the main demands of autonomous truck drivers.
According to the law, the advance payment of the toll to the road carrier is mandatory and the responsibility of shippers or equivalent. The driver must also be provided with the respective proof of payment.
According to the National Land Transport Agency (ANTT), when it is found that the toll voucher is not paid in advance, the shipper or equivalent will receive a fine of R $ 550.00 per vehicle for each trip in which the anticipation of the mandatory toll voucher.
Law 13.103 / 2015, of March 2, 2015, also known as the Truck Driver Law, added to the Brazilian Traffic Code (CTB) the article Art. 67-C, which establishes the limits for the work hours of truck drivers throughout the country.
An eight-hour working day must be carried out, with the possibility of adding a maximum of two extra daily hours of work.
Article 67-C further states that the driver must rest 11 hours every 24 hours. Of this total rest time, at least 8 hours must be uninterrupted.
Also according to the law, every 6 hours when driving a cargo transport vehicle, the truck driver must rest 30 minutes. This time can be split, as long as the driver does not exceed five and a half hours uninterrupted at the wheel.
The driving time may even be extensive, as long as it is clear that the reason was the need to reach a place that offers the safety and care required by the truck driver.
Besides, overtime (in addition to the 8 hours devoted to normal working hours) must be paid with an increase of 50% over normal working hours.
According to the law, the driver is responsible for controlling the working day. The registration must be made through an instantaneous changeable speed and time recorder (tachograph), annotation in a logbook, a slip, an external worksheet, or by electronic means installed in the vehicle, according to the Contran standard.
Non-compliance with the driving time established by law subjects the truck driver to the penalties established by the Brazilian Traffic Code (CTB). These penalties range from the imposition of fines to the retention of the vehicle to comply with the rest time.
The Truck Driver Law also provides that it is up to the employer to bear the costs of health treatment related to the driver’s professional activity.
Therefore, if the driver develops a disease due to his work, the contracting company must guarantee his medical treatment.
End of charging on suspended axles
The Truck Driver Law also determines that cargo vehicles that circulate empty do not have to pay toll fees on the axles that they keep suspended.
With the end of the collection, there was a significant cost reduction for truck drivers, since tolls represent about 15% of the freight value.
The seven-axle truck (14 wheels), for example, the most used in the country, can suspend three axles when empty. This means a 43% reduction in the toll amount.
Electronic freight payment
Established by Law 11.442, of January 5, 2007 (updated by Laws 12.249, of June 11, 2010, and 13.103, of March 2, 2015), the payment of freight for road freight transport to the Autonomous Cargo Carrier ( TAC) must be made utilizing a credit account or other payment method regulated by the National Land Transport Agency (ANTT).
According to the law, the deposit in account or other means of payment must be in the name of the trucker and be identified on the bill of lading.
The registration of these payments can serve as proof of income for the autonomous cargo carrier.
Any other means of payment for freight is therefore prohibited. Besides, current legislation prohibits discounting any bank fees or fees for electronic payment of the amount due to the carrier. Following § 7 of Article 5, these fees are the sole responsibility of the person responsible for payment.
The maximum time for loading and unloading
Law 13.103 / 2015 also established a maximum period for loading and unloading trucks. According to Paragraph 5 of Art 11, the maximum period for loading and unloading the road cargo transport vehicle will be 5 hours, counting from the arrival of the vehicle at the destination address.
After this period has elapsed, the amount equivalent to R $ 1.61 per ton/hour or fraction will be due to the Autonomous Cargo Carrier (TAC) or to the Road Cargo Transport Company (ETC). This value should be adjusted annually, according to the variation of the National Consumer Price Index (INPC), calculated by the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE).
Also according to the law, the shipper and the recipient of the cargo are required to provide the transporter with a document proving the time of arrival of the truck at the premises of the respective establishments. Failure to comply with this rule is subject to a fine to be applied by the National Land Transport Agency (ANTT) and should not exceed 5% (five percent) of the cargo value.
PPE for truckers
More than a recommendation, Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for truck drivers is a truck driver’s right by law. This equipment is essential for preventing accidents. They guarantee the safety and health of the driver and everyone who crosses their way on the roads.
Regulatory Norm No. 6, of the Ministry of Labor, deals with the use of personal protective equipment required from professionals and employers in the exercise of their professions. It informs how the inspection is carried out and presents the mandatory items for each part of the body, depending on the function performed.
According to NR-6, it is the employer’s obligation to purchase PPE appropriate to the risk of each activity and provide it to employees. These, in turn, have an obligation to comply with the regulations on the correct use of the equipment.
Yet, the Brazilian Standard 9735/2016, from ABNT, is more specific and deals with the use of PPE in the transport of dangerous cargo, determining which is the minimum set of equipment that must be used by the driver and his assistants in their travels.
According to article 482 of the CLT, the lack of EPI for truck drivers may result in a fine, embargo, or interdiction of the company, for the employee, and warning and dismissal for just cause, in case of recurrence, for the employee, consisting of a serious fault.
As we have seen, the rights of the truck driver are regulated by law and must be guaranteed by everyone. These standards ensure decent working conditions and contribute to increasing efficiency and safety on the roads.
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