Particular Aspects Regarding the Separation of Working Time from Rest Time for Offshore Workers Under Romanian Legislation in light of the Requirements laid down in Directive 2003/88/EC

Răzvan Anghel


Purpose. The analysis aims to clarify two practical and theoretical issues regarding the definition of working time from rest time that occurs in practice, particularly in the case of workers on marine oil drilling platforms, namely the issue of on-board rest periods and the issue of the time needed for workers’ transportation to the marine drilling platform and back to shore
Design/ methodology/ approach. The analysis considers some examples in Romanian national courts case law, examined in light of Directive 2003/88 provision and CJEU case law.
Findings. Offshore workers have a unique situation that determines the organisation of working time, which must be considered when dealing with a case involving these workers. If the issue of on-board rest periods appears to be quite clear in the national case law, then the issue of time required for workers to be transported to and from the marine drilling platform seems to still be problematic for national courts, especially since there is an ongoing scientific debate about whether and when travel time should be considered working time, according to CJEU case law.
Research limitations/implications. As of right now, there are too few cases regarding offshore workers, particularly cases that focus on the organisation of working time. The cases that do exist mainly deal with salary rights rather than the employer’s obligation to respect the maximum working time or the minimum rest time; thus, those issues are only dealt with incidentally.
Originality/value. This analysis contributes some clarifying details on the boundaries of working time and rest time for offshore workers. Furthermore, it emphasises the important distinction between the legal regime of working time for the purpose of health and security and the legal regime of working additional overtime for the purpose of salary rights determination.
Paper type. Issue paper.