Out-Law Legal News 17012023

Under the new rules, if a driver has been working on site for at least six hours and will be transporting workers on the rear deck of a lorry thereafter, an employer is required to provide that driver with a break of at least 30 minutes before being required to drive.

Employers must now appoint a ‘vehicle buddy’ for all lorries transporting workers on the rear deck, and ensure that that buddy has been fully informed of his or her role. The vehicle buddy should check that the lorry driver is fit to drive and remains alert while driving.

In a statement, Singapore’s regulators – including the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) – said that all lorries used to transport workers will be fitted with rain covers under the new regime. From 1 January, newly registered lorries must be fitted with rain covers on all non-enclosed sides of the canopy, and at least one of those covers must be transparent to provide a sufficiently lit environment. The rain cover requirement will come into force for in-use light lorries, which have a maximum laden weight of 3,500 kilograms, from 1 July; and for in-use heavy lorries, with a maximum laden weight exceeding 3,500 kilograms, from 1 January 2024. 

Mayumi Soh of Pinsent Masons MPillay, the Singapore joint law venture between MPillay and Pinsent Masons, said:” The newly implemented rules for worker safety are promising, and demonstrate increased emphasis on enhancing the safety of our migrant workers. Employers should take note of these rules and carry out the measures necessary for protecting their workers as well as ensuring compliance.”

MOM is encouraging employers to reward good driving behaviours, to deploy vehicular safety technologies to improve drivers’ driving safety, and to provide raincoats and rain boots to protect workers from bad weather.

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