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Tachograph Symbols

Tachograph Symbols – Standards

UK & European legislation established 4 main symbols used in these regions, with the aim of standardising and simplify the use of digital tachographs by drivers. While tachograph manufacturers make use of additional tachograph symbols, the 4 fundamental symbols will always be included in accordance with the regulations.

Tachograph Symbols Explained

Each of the 4 standard digital tachograph symbols are explained below. Details of additional symbols used on specific tachographs should be found on the tachograph manufacturer’s website.


Tachograph Symbols Driving

Tachograph Symbols – Driving

This is usually automatically selected on most digital tachographs whenever the vehicle is in motion and the driver is behind the wheel. This symbol is used to track the duration of driving time.

The ‘Driving’ tachograph symbol represents a steering wheel.


Tachograph Symbols – Break, rest or leave

Used to cover breaks in work and daily or weekly rest periods. Drivers may not carry out any driving or any other work. Break periods are to be used exclusively for recuperation. During a rest period a driver must be able to dispose freely of their time. Periods of annual or sick leave should also be recorded.

The ‘Break/Rest’ tachograph symbol represents a bed.

Tachograph Symbols – Other-Work

This should be selected to cover all activities defined as work other than driving, in scope of EU/ AETR rules. This includes any work for the same or another employer, within or outside the transport sector.

The ‘Other work’ tachograph symbol represents the use of tools.

Tachograph Symbols – Available

For periods of waiting time, the duration of which is known about in advance. Examples of what might count as a period of availability (POA) are accompanying a vehicle on a ferry crossing or waiting while other workers load/unload the vehicle. For mobile workers driving in a team, a POA would also include time spent sitting next to the driver while the vehicle is in motion (unless taking a break or performing other work, such as navigation).

The ‘Available’ tachograph symbol represents blocked-out time.

With tachograph symbols understood, drivers should be able to ensure vehicle units are recording their activities accurately, and operators can properly check the data downloaded from tachographs for compliant working practices.

EasyTac downloader lets operators meet the minimum legal requirements for downloading digital tachograph data, with no on-going charges and free technical support.

Stay up to date

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