New time limit for parking: 25 hours parking restriction on Danish rest areas

The Danish government has recently adopted new rules regarding lorry parking at the rest areas along the Danish highways. The new rules are an implementation of the 2018 Finance Law Agreement, which impose a time limit of 25 hours for parking at the rest areas along the Danish highways.

Due to the 25-hour time limit, the international road carriages to and from Denmark will face new challenges. The rules on driving time and rest periods operate with different categories of rest periods. The required rest period is dependent on the length of the driving period. The new Danish rules may cause challenges to the execution of rest periods exceeding 25 hours.

The rules on driving time and rest periods distinguish between regular weekly rests and reduced weekly rests. Regular weekly rest means any period of rest of at least 45 hours, and reduced weekly rest means any period of rest of at least 24 hours and up to 45 hours. Especially when it comes to the reduced weekly rest periods, the new rules can cause challenges. Unlike the regular weekly rest periods, the reduced weekly rest periods may be spent in the cab of the lorry. This follows from a decision rendered by the European Court of Justice in December 2017.

The new 25-hour time limit makes it difficult for the drivers to carry out their reduced weekly rest, which drivers before the new rules could spend at the rest areas along the Danish highways. Now, the drivers can be forced to spend these rests elsewhere. The rules may cause challenges to the transport companies performing international transport carriages to and from Denmark.

In addition to the time-limited parking, the government has decided to raise the general level of fines for illegal parking at the rest areas from 510 DKK to 2000 DKK. Moreover, the fine for illegal parking at the exit ramps is now 3000 DKK instead of the current 1000 DKK.

The rules regarding time limited parking apply to all 90 state resting areas along the Danish highways and the rules are expected to come into force 1 July 2018. The raise of the general level of fines for illegal parking in rest areas are expected to enter into force on 1 January 2019.

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