The introduction of the digital tachograph (IDT) gave a major impulse to road safety by ensuring that professional drivers keep their driving and rest times.
However the implementation of European Union legislation was extremely complex for all actors: Member States and their national authorities responsible for card issuing, enforcement, policy implementation, and also related stakeholders from industry such as tachograph, card and vehicle manufacturers.
Since 1997, the European Commission has launched many projects to support EU Member States and AETR Contracting Parties in their efforts to implement Regulation (EC) n°2135/98. In October 2002 the Implementation of Digital Tachograph (IDT) Project was launched by the European Commission, in which national experts and future members of CORTE participated. Considerable efforts have been done to offer support to the Member States' authorities and to monitor, as far as possible, the implementation of the digital tachograph system. On the one hand, European regulations are extremely ambitious and extraordinarily complex to implement. On the other hand, Member States have to coordinate, if not harmonise, their efforts since road transport is a sector in which distortions of competition are very harmful and political issues can rapidly become very sensitive.
The IDT project provided significant support to Member States and helped them dealing with the following issues:
- Type approval of equipment,
- Card issuing (driver, control, company and workshop cards),
- Setting up a network called TACHOnet for Member States to exchange information about issuing of cards,
- Adopting adequate legislation on digital tachograph and data management,
- Adopting consistent legislation on new procedures for performing roadside and company checks,
- Preparing sets of new laws for workshop approval,
- Preparing national legislations on security policies,
- Assessment of all implementation aspects of Regulations n°3821/85 as last amended against the provisions of Directive 95/46/EC on the protection of individuals with regards to the processing of personal data and to the free movement of such data.